Last week I told you how to deliver an engaging webinar. This week, I’ll tell you how to set one up… and get it filled. Did I do it the wrong way around? Yes. But that’s just how I roll.
Now, this isn’t a definitive guide. Every webinar is different, as is every business, and you know your crowd (and what they’re likely to respond to) better than I do. All I can tell you is how we at DB Ltd. (and its various business units) do it.
But first, a quick recap for housekeeping purposes…
What is a webinar?
Quite simply, it’s a seminar or class that is hosted online. It’s typically broadcast live and can be either accessed online, or “dialled into” from a landline. You, the business, sets it up and promotes it, and your delegates access it remotely.
You can host paid webinars, or you can run them for free for engagement/up-cross sell purposes. For the purpose of this example, we’ll pretend that this one is free.
[clickToTweet tweet=”Every webinar is different, as is every business. All I can tell you is how we at DB Ltd. do it. ” quote=”Every webinar is different, as is every business. All I can tell you is how we at DB Ltd. do it. “]
Right, let’s get started.
#1. CHOOSE YOUR PLATFORM
Webinars are complex beasts. There are all sorts of things you can do with them, and different webinar platforms have different benefits over others. It’s important to establish what you want from your webinar before you pick the platform. Ask yourself…
- How many people do I want to attend?
- Do I need to sell anything from them?
- Do I want to track the attendees?
- Do I want to record it?
- Do I need a registration service?
- Do I want to host polls and surveys etc?
- How much am I willing to spend?
For more information on which platforms are available (and the various pros/cons and prices of each – some of which are free) there’s an excellent rundown available here. For simplicities sake, I’ll tell you why we use GoToWebinar, which is priced at $79/month (per organizer) for up to 100 attendees.
- It allows for a higher volume of attendees, therefore better suited for our (rather large) member community.
- It has a full registration service built in, which we use elements of (more on that later)
- It enables recording and archiving, perfect if you want to create and sell products without reproducing content
- It integrates with most landing page software and CRMs
Yes, it is one of the pricier platforms. However, it is one of most reliable and feature laden and allows for a greater number of attendees, so it suits our needs. Shop around, do your homework and don’t rush into it. The suitability of the platform is key to success.
2#. CHOOSE YOUR TOPIC
The first rule of marketing is: specificity sells. And that includes webinars (yes, even the free ones). Before you decide the when (or even the how you must first decide the “what”. What is this webinar about, and why are you running it in the first place? Here’s a few I’ve helped create/fill/run in recent months to give you an example…
- How to create your own podcast series
- How to sell your coaching services
- How to uncover the hidden profits in your business (funnily enough, that one is running today!)
A specific topic guarantees a specific result. Ask yourself: what result will the attendees (figuratively) walk away with? Once you have that result, you will also have the pains associated with not having the results. In the case of the example topics above
- Not having a way of actively and regularly engaging with your crowd/lack of leads/lack of authority
- Lack of sales/clients/revenue
- Having the revenue, but not having any profit/cash in the business
Having the above will make step #4 a breeze. But first…
#3. CHOOSE YOUR TIME
If you want a good registration (and, more crucially, turn out) rate, you need to get the timing right. Knowing your audience is essential for this step, which can be solved with one simple question…
“When will the audience be free to listen to my webinar?”
It’s possible to sit and passively listen in to a webinar with your headphones at a desk, but some of your delegates will either prefer to be fully engaged OR not have the luxury of a distraction free workspace. If your target audience are self-employed entrepreneurs or small business owners, business hours are usually deemed acceptable as long as plenty of notice is given. However, if your target audience is an employee (or simply unlikely to be the master of their own schedule) then choosing an out-of-hours time/day is advisable. Or perhaps a typical lunch time.
If you’re planning on making your webinar a series (or something more regular) it’s advisable to stick to a regular time and day. People are creatures of habit and, if your webinar works, they will plan their working days/weeks/months around them.
#4. REGISTRATION SERIES
There are lots of ways you can fill up a webinar, but here’s what we do. Now, one of the upsides to GoToWebinar is you can send potential delegates a direct registration link which means you don’t have to set up a separate landing page, although if you want a decent conversion rate it is strongly recommended.
Here’s one I made earlier via ClickFunnels…
The building of landing pages is a subject for a different blog, so we’ll stick a pin in that for now. Each webinar has a unique registration url. Integrate it with the form on Clickfunnels (or whatever software you choose – once again, shop around1) and every one you fill out will automatically register to the webinar. Easy peasy.
Now, this is where you draw on the power of your list. Select your targets, and build a simple campaign inviting them to register. Here’s a simple formula that I use for a fortnightly members webclass which turns over a predictable (and high) registration conversion each time.
Say, the webinar to be filled is one that regularly runs (fortnightly) on a Thursday at 12pm.
EMAIL #1 – 7 days before (Thurs) @ 9am – content led (subject of webinar) email with a CTA to register
EMAIL #2 – 3 days before (Mon) @ 3:15pm – direct call to register
EMAIL #3 – 1 day before (Weds) @ 10am – direct call to register
EMAIL #4 – morning of (Thurs) @ 7am – direct call to register – last chance
If you have already established the results and the pain points associated with the subject of the webinar, creating the copy should be easy. Just remember to clearly state the time and the date (and each instance if you reuse the same elements for another webinar) and make the call to action clear and concise.
Getting people to register is only half the battle. Getting them to actually show up is the next step… and arguably the most crucial. You’ve already convinced every registrant to register, so they have already been sold on it. But people are forgetful and compulsive creatures! Reminders are not only recommended, they’re a necessity.
Some platforms (like GoToWebinar) will have an automatic system built in, which will send every registrant reminders by email. If you chose a platform which doesn’t offer this feature, it’s still advisable to set up a similar system in your CRM, in which registrants are tagged and put in a separate “reminder” series.
Here’s a simple pattern to follow:
EMAIL #1 – 1 minute after reg – confirmation of registration
EMAIL #2 – 3 days before
EMAIL #3 – 1 day before
EMAIL #4 – 1 hour before
EMAIL #5 – 15 minute warning
And then, all that’s left to do is read Part I (again) and enjoy your webinar. And remember to record (if you can) and repurpose that content. We do it all the time.
If you’re curious about how our webinars work, the best way is to actually come to a few yourself. Luckily for you, we do loads of them! All you have to do to join in is be a Success Club member, which you can now try out for the princely sum of £2. Click the banner below (or here, if you fancy!) and see for yourself.