Webinars have long been an essential part of an effective demand generation engine. They allow for live communication with your ideal customer personality on a large scale, as well as the ability to engage directly with your prospects and existing customers.
In fact, 73% of marketers and sales managers consider webinars to be one of the most trusted ways to generate quality leads. (Reuters Events, 2020)
However, last year the webinar landscape was turned upside down. Marketers have moved away from in-person events and, as a result, have invested their dollars in digital channels. Not only is it difficult to capture an audience, but the gloomy zoom, growing distractions, and heightened audience expectations also mean it’s even more difficult to keep attendees engaged.
The good news is that with the right approach, you can take your webinar productions to new heights by generating more engagement, leads, and revenue than ever before. Cvent calls this new production standard, Webinars redesigned.
Webinars have followed the same format for many years. Here are some telltale signs of the status quo to compare with your current webinars:
- Average length of webinar presentations ranges from 30 to 60 minutes
- The overwhelming majority of webinar attendees join from desktops
- Often present pre-recorded content
- Usually one or two hosts chatting on slides
- The speakers turned off their video cameras
- May include participant survey to boost engagement
Before the digital deluge, the status quo was enough. Today, these experiences of the status quo will erode engagement.
This status quo experience is not limited to your participants. On the presentation side, you’ve probably suffered from archaic user experiences, with limited abilities beyond running simple presentations or polls. Reports were limited to the number of people present and the length of their stay.
It’s time for the whole experience to be improved.
With webinars and digital events, your content IS your event. Make sure you create and personalize quality content that really speaks to your audience. You can consider a serial approach for your webinars by focusing on a basic webinar theme and then running multiple webinars on related sub-themes. Doing so will extend the attention and time spent with your brand through more foodie moments, with the added benefit of spending less time promoting your webinars.
Webinars are often static experiences that provide a unique experience for all participants. Break free from this template and tailor the webinar experience to suit each attendee’s role, interests, needs, and learning goals. One way to do this is to use an online participant registration and management system, such as Cvent and Cvent’s Attendee Hub. With these tools, you can send personalized promotions to specific audience segments with personalized messages and dynamic signups that will provide content recommendations that only resonate with them and flexible with the timing and duration of webinars. !
To meet the 8-second human attention span, reimagine your role as an executive producer, instead of just giving a presentation. By improving your webinar production game and keeping it fast-paced, you’ll bring content to life, engage attendees, and improve the overall webinar experience. New production tools let you control the presentation of your content in a much more visual and compelling way. This can include more crossovers, switching layouts, and speaker dynamics.
Encouraging participant interactivity will improve the overall webinar participant experience and keep them engaged. Improving participant interactivity will create a more complete webinar experience and make participants feel like they are part of the session and a larger community, rather than just outside observers. Consider using a webinar platform that allows attendees to enter live Q&A and vote on questions to prioritize speaker responses. Offering live polls throughout the webinar will also engage attendees, with the added benefit of collecting additional attendee data.
With new standards raising the bar for webinar programs, marketers can expect to capture the attention of your attendees for longer. This in turn will allow more in-depth information to be drawn on the basis of this commitment.
With a better plan for webinar engagement and information deepening, investing heavily in reinventing your webinars will help you create a clearer picture of interest, accelerate smarter follow-up, and ultimately prove greater business impact.