Chances are you’ve attended a webinar in the past 12 months. The popularity of this form of marketing is growing because it’s a proven form of lead generation. Part educational opportunity and part soft sales tool, webinars can be a great way to connect with your audience and build long-term relationships.
If you haven’t attempted a webinar because you’re not sure of the technology needed know that several companies offer free or low-cost software that is simple to use. AnyMeeting.com, for example, is free for up to 200 attendees. Or you can keep it small and host an online conference for up to 25 people via Skype.
If you can create a PowerPoint presentation, you can create slide to share online. And you can announce your webinar with your next Boomerang email marketing campaign. So what are you waiting for? Here are four benefits your company will reap when you host a webinar:
1. You establish credibility.
You have expertise in your field, and webinars give you an opportunity to share your knowledge with your current and potential customers. For example, if you own a home improvement company, you could host a webinar on five easy ways to winterize your home. Of if you own a video company, you could do a webinar on how to prepare for your next photo shoot.
The beauty is that you don’t have to worry about directly selling – you’re just teaching. Sharing this information puts you at top-of-mind when a customer is ready to hire.
2. You create a valuable form of content.
When you hold a webinar, you have the option of recording it. You can make it available at a later date for those who weren’t available to attend, or you can package and sell it as a standalone product.
Webinars also provide a great source of information for blog posts. Take your main talking points and write a short blog post about each one. Or use your webinar information as tweets and status updates across your social media networks.
3. You build your newsletter list.
When you post and promote your webinar information, you have the ability to widen your audience. That’s because webinars are considered valuable. They put the participant in a more passive role, allowing them to listen to information instead of reading it. They’re more convenient than meetings or conferences because you can participate right from your own desk. And there are no geographical boundaries; people can sign up from anywhere, extending your reach.
If you present a topic of interest, chances are your participants will share the opportunity with their network, and you’ll build your list.
4. You can drive sales conversions.
When someone signs up for your webinar, they’re showing interest and respect for you and your company. That means you’ll have your audience for 30-60 minutes. Leverage this opportunity to convert potential customers into paying customers.
The key is to put the emphasis on content and not on sales. It can be tempting to use the time as a 30-minute commercial for your company, but that will just turn off those you wish to convert. Instead, use a webinar as a relationship-building tool – a chance for customers to get to know you and hear your voice – and watch your sales conversions come when you send your next email marketing campaign.
Happy New Year from the Boomerang.com Team!! Cheers to 2014