The Power User’s Guide To Successful Webinars

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This eBook provides webinar tips, tactics and techniques from some of the sharpest minds in B2B marketing to help you create, promote and deliver your best webinars.

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<ul><li>1.AeBookThe Power Users Guide To Successful WebinarsTips, tactics and techniques from the sharpest minds in BtoB marketingSponSored By</li></ul><p>2. The Power Users Guide To Successful Webinars2Interactive online webinars have emerged as the gold standard in BtoB DemandGen Report collected insights to address core areas including:marketing. Consistently ranking among the most reliable methods for BtoB Creating compelling webinar content;engagement and lead generation, the formats flexibility, functionality andconsistently strong track record of roI have made it a preferred media for delivering that content in an optimal fashion;most marketers. Experimenting with new short-form formats;Illustrating this trend, the 2010 Lead Generation Marketing ROI Studyconducted by The Lenskold Group and eMarketer, found 52% of Integrating social media into webinar strategies,respondents felt webinars are the most effective way to generate high Developing successful pre- and post-event campaigns thatvalue leads that are more likely to convert to sales. In that study, webinarssupport demand generation and engagement goals.beat out other vehicles in several measures.This ebook highlights webinar tips, tactics and techniques distilled fromHowever, because webinars are still a relatively new medium, some some of the sharpest minds in BtoB marketing. Insights from webinarcompanies still struggle to find the right formula for successful webinars. masters focus on maximizing registration, optimizing the attendeeTo help develop a blueprint for webinar success, DemandGen Report experience and employing specifically timed actions that yield betterinterviewed a group of power users, a mix of executives with extensiveprospects and more marketing qualified leads.experience in hosting webinars, as well as a track record for drivinga steady stream of registrants, attendees and ultimately engagedviewers. 3. The Power Users Guide To Successful Webinars3Creating Compelling Webinar Content Conversely, webinars targetingStart with your audience.prospects further along inCompanies get so caughtFrom a technology standpoint, webinar platforms are fairly mature.their decision-making process up in telling their story theyHowever, for many marketers the art (and science) of producing qualitywork best when topics matchforget that the audiencecontent is a dilemma that renews itself with each webinar project. A primepain points with solutions. Forshould be the focus. Makecause is insufficient planning in the pre-content phase. Webinar specialistsexample, a webinar titled 3agree that marketing objectives, profiling audience composition and sure that what youreContent Pieces That Doublepromotional tactics are top pre-content considerations. Web Site Leads is likely todelivering is of value.draw attendees with veryBefore you do any content development, determine what youre trying toMatt West,specific marketing needs.Senior Director ofachieve with the webinar, said Matt West, Senior Director of Marketing for Marketing, Genius.commarketing automation provider, Genius.com. Start with your audience. Whether the webinar objectiveCompanies get so caught up in telling their story they forget that theis broad or narrow, speakeraudience should be the focus. Make sure that what youre delivering is of selection is an importantvalue. Nobody wants to sit through your one-hour infomercial.decision. Experts agree that industry rock-star presenters are a goodinvestment, but are not a prerequisite for success. Its always best whenAs audience needs take shape, marketing objectives must be defined tothe presenter is seen as a subject matter expert, said David Lewis,meet those needs. For example, to drive lead volume, pair name-brandCEO of automation and lead management consultancy DemandGenpresenters with hot topics or notable research. This is where titles like 5International.Things Every Manager Should Know About are most effective, Westsaid. This kind of webinar is good for finding people that are above theLets say youre a software company and you want to showcase a newsales funnel. Theyll need to be nurtured longer before becoming sales-release, Lewis said. Its certainly appropriate to use the actual productready. manager as the subject matter expert. If the audience perceives that thepresenter is not in sales or marketing for that matter youre going toget more audience interest based on that persons credibility. 4. The Power Users Guide To Successful Webinars4 Webinar Content and Title Checklist:Since most webinars feature a presenter addressing accompanying slides,industry experts also stress that the visual content must be compelling. Use high-level thought leadership content to attract and engageAddressing PowerPoint issues, text-heavy pages, font choices, evocative a broad audience. Recognized industry experts, hot topics andvisuals, content/presenter choreography and other inherent hurdles areexclusive research tend to work best at this level.essential checkpoints for all presenters. Titles for thought leadership webinars should be strategic (i.e.,Sales and Marketing Alignment: New Infrastructure Concepts). After big-picture webinar attendees identify with certain painpoints, more tactical how to content gets into specifics. At thislevel, accentuate expertise by using credible subject matter expertsrather than rock star presenters. Titles for how-to webinars should address specialized prospectneeds (i.e., 4 Simple Steps for Optimal Lead Scoring). Offers and incentives for either webinar type should be valuable toattendees and hand-raisers. Free white papers that complementwebinar topics are useful and valuable; iPods and gift cards arenice-to-haves, but dont add to perceived expertise. 5. The Power Users Guide To Successful Webinars 5Optimizing The Attendee ExperienceQ&amp;A functionality can also gauge As people log on before ainformation recall in novel ways. webinar starts its a goodAudiences share common attributes whether they are seeing a concert,Neyland offered this example: idea to send out audience-attending a trade show or joining an online presentation. The ability to hold Near the end of a webinar wellwide chats like welcomeaudience attention using continuous engagement often decides the fate ask a question such as, Earlierto the webinar, well beginof reality TV shows and webinars alike. When used correctly, core webinar in this presentation we identifiedfunctionality like polling, chat, hand raising and Q&amp;A help insure desired in five minutes and heresthe biggest pain point of webinaroutcomes.the Twitter hashtag for thiscreation. The first person toanswer that question correctly discussion.As people log on before a webinar starts its a good idea to send outgets a free copy of the hottest Veronica Neyland,audience-wide chats like welcome to the webinar, well begin in fivenew marketing book. The idea Marketing Specialist,minutes and heres the Twitter hashtag for this discussion, said Veronica Citrix Onlineof engagement by incentive isNeyland, Marketing Specialist for Citrix Online, whose GoToWebinarappealing to viewers, and yieldsplatform has been a pacesetter in the online presentation space.useful data on content retention.Another really great way to use chat is to have the moderator tellInvolving the audience through polls has also proven a successful strategyattendees something like, we have a speaker dialing in from Boston andto keep an attendee engaged. Webinar viewers tend to get sidetrackedanother from Santa Barbara please type into the chat pane whereby their email and other distractions, Lewis noted. Having pollsyoure calling from, Neyland noted. We see a huge influx of replies fromcontinually throughout the presentation keeps them focused.little things like that.The prevailing wisdom is that polls should add value on top of whatsThe Q&amp;A pane is arguably the most-used webinar feature. Using thebeing presented. Its okay to do some up front, like asking What kind offirst name of the person asking a question is a simple Q&amp;A tip that takesmarketing automation system do you use and then showing those resultsengagement up a notch. It seems obvious, but can be overlooked in liveto attendees so they can benchmark themselves within the group,webcasts. 6. The Power Users Guide To Successful Webinars 6Lewis said. But he warned against self-serving polls that seek to qualifyattendees for sponsors without yielding any insights for attendees.Another best practice for survey presentations is to poll attendees with Using screen sharing technologythe same question thats being shown on-screen. Audience results are to show something other thandisplayed alongside the main study. This not only engages; it generatespresentation slides is a creativeinstant quantitative data thats enlightening for attendees and sponsors.way to liven the presentationReal-time screen sharing between presenters is another feature thatcontent and format and reducecan lessen monotony during a presentation. With real-time screen sharing,presentation fatigue.the presenter can use and show any application on the presenterscomputerfrom Internet web browsers to video players and photoprograms. A good presenter might choose to momentarily exit PowerPointand navigate to a web site or show a video to enhance and energize thepoint they are making in the presentation. Using screen sharing technologyto show something other than presentation slides is a creative way to liventhe presentation content and format and reduce presentation fatigue.When using audience interaction tools, the ability to measure how they areperforming is useful. GoToWebinars Attentiveness Meter is a dashboard-style feature that measures participation based on Chat, Q&amp;A and otherattendee behavior. It is a data visualization tool that helps moderatorsprevent attention decay in real-time by taking actions that refocus viewers. 7. The Power Users Guide To Successful Webinars7Experimenting With Short-Form WebinarsLewis recommends The 30-minute webinar is15-minute webinars with tight great for very focused topicsIn his recent webinar, Enchantment: The Art of Changing Hearts, author, storyboarding for clinics on its 20 minutes of content,speaker and former Apple executive, Guy Kawasaki, offered this simple spot topics that people can and 10 minutes of Q&amp;A.formula for webinars: 10 slides; 20 minutes; 30 point font. Kawasakisview at the start of the day,presentation actually totaled 62 slides, but the notion that less is more or while eating lunch. YoudJeanne Hopkins,was clear. There are new developments in webinar marketing that are use something very short likeDirector of Marketing,embracing such ideals, starting with duration. Hubspotthat to get a higher responserate. DemandGen InternationalThe use of 30-minute and even 15-minute webinars has been on theis testing a prerecordedrise. These short-form presentations are gaining favor as marketers12-minute format, whichconfront the twin issues of content overload and attention scarcity.extends to 22 minutes whenThe 30-minute webinar is great for very focused topics its 20 minutes done with a live presenter.of content, and 10 minutes of Q&amp;A, said Jeanne Hopkins, Director ofMarketing for inbound marketing solution provider, HubSpot. Too manycompanies try for 60-minute webinars when they dont have enough ofthe right content. And sometimes the speakers [in longer webinars] are notconscious enough of the audiences time.Lewis likened short-form webinars to a time-tested TV model. If you thinkabout the actual content of a sitcom 22 minutes it reminds you thatthe more you rehearse and refine your presentation, the more worthwhilecontent you can pack into shorter webinars, Lewis said. 8. The Power Users Guide To Successful Webinars 8Building Effective Promotional CampaignsWith todays marketingMultichannel promotion isecosystem supporting a vast a smart strategy, but emailemail remains the primary promotional tool for webinar enrollment. As a number of webinars each day, is the best tactic for webinarmarketing platform, webinars have matured while best practices for drivingcompanies are getting moreinvitations if you want toregistration have emerged.creative during initial outreach. reach the most relevantMultichannel promotion is a smart strategy, but email is the best tactic One expert noted a uniqueaudiences at scale.for webinar invitations if you want to reach the most relevant audiences at strategy for the invite phase ofscale, said Katie Martell, Director of Buzz for NetProspex, a provider ofa webinar. One componentKatie Martell, Director of Buzz,verified crowd-sourced prospect data. Just by regularly sending webinarwe added was an include NetProspexinvitations to targeted audiences, your brand will be perceived as a helpful, your ideas or questions inputvaluable partner thats ready to solve pain points.option, said Sally Lowery,Director of Acquisition andRetention at email service provider iContact. We invited registrants to Webinar Promotional Checklist:send in a few relevant points or case study items two weeks prior to the Use a compelling subject line (avoid too much marketing speak);webcast. Lowery said it turned out to be the largest webinar she hasdone to date, drawing more than 2,000 registrants. Make a clear whats in it for me statement with the invite; andMany marketers believe that intriguing subject lines compel the curious Develop an email template that has large headlines, easy to findto click. Phrases like Youre Invited can pull very well, Lewis said. Its registration links, and renders well on mobile devices.human nature to like being invited to things. If an intriguing e-vite comesfrom a person not a company Im going to open it to see what Iminvited to. Please join us, Wed like you to attend and This mightinterest you are all variations on this simple tactic. 9. The Power Users Guide To Successful Webinars 9According to the May 2011As for the technical formatting of email invites, some marketers choose Responsys study, Email onto use the customizable templates provided by the webinar solution.The Move: The Future ofOthers prefer text-only email invites for their casual style and to-the-point Mobile Messaging, thereappeal. The general guideline is to use the format most likely to resonate has been an 81% growthwith a particular target audience.in mobile email viewershipResearch from Marketing Sherpas 2010 Email Marketing Benchmark in six months betweenshowed 67% of people do not display images by default in their email October 2010 and Marchsystem, so HTML emails may not render effectively. Industry experts2011.recommend marketers do A/B split testing with both HTML and text emailinvites to see which performs better with their audience.The growth of mobile is also presenting new opportunities and challengesfor marketers. According to the May 2011 Responsys study, Email on TheMove: The Future of Mobile Messaging, there has been an 81% growth inmobile email viewership in six months be...</p>