As a powerful B2B tool that can capture, engage and nurture both prospects and customers, webinars have fantastic potential and when used effectively, can generate new leads and revenue.The best webinars sit at the centre of a campaign of activity that drives leads all the way through the marketing funnel.
Realistically, a lone webinar without this support will not succeed. A strategic campaign that appeals to the right people and delivers the right messages is a necessity and maximises the value of every touchpoint while driving prospect engagement.
73% of B2B marketing and sales leaders say webinars are the best way to generate high quality leads (Gotomeeting).
This blog will investigate the strategic pillars you need to consider when building a B2B webinar and how you can maximise the success of your campaign.
Create Clear Objectives and Measurable KPIs for Your Webinar
Before you do anything else, you must first identify what it is you want to achieve with your webinar campaign.
- Are you aiming to educate your audience with thought leadership?
- Is your priority top of the funnel lead generation?
- Can you use a webinar to push on with sales enablement and further develop sales opportunities?
Whatever the case, your objectives need to be carefully scoped out and the metrics agreed up-front.
This helps to outline how success will be measured and provides useful material to justify future strategic decisions.
To Deliver Great Value, You Need to Understand Your Audience
In the event you’ve conducted some level of customer segmentation and have personas at the ready, identifying your target audience for your webinar should be relatively easy. If not, then you need to think about the type of people you want to appeal to and how you can deliver genuine value to this group.
Once you have a clear view on who you’re targeting, you need to think about their key needs, the problems they regularly face and potential solutions. This will help identify which topics are likely to deliver value and play a key role in how you build your webinar campaign.
With an understanding of your audience’s challenges, you next need to evaluate your current relationship with them.
Do you have a set of target accounts and prospects you’re trying to engage with or are you aiming at prospects with whom you already have some form of relationship?
The answers to these questions will all influence how you deliver value and build the acquisition side of your campaign.
Develop a Value-Led Content Strategy
Your webinar campaign requires a clear content strategy that delivers value to your target audience.
The subject matter of your webinar needs to focus on the key challenges your audience regularly face while also helping to find solutions and overcome them. This focus on value needs to be reflected in every element of your webinar campaign, including:
- The theme you identify
- The topics that you choose to focus on
- The format / presentation of your webinar content
- The expert speakers you select
All decisions must be guided by a single value-focused content strategy. Once the details have been agreed you can then move onto making your webinar campaign content unique and take an approach that both delivers value and maximises engagement.
Without a content strategy, you’re running the risk of talking about a subject matter only you care about in the way you understand. This is risky as it assumes the audience will automatically be interested and that they will understand what you’re saying regardless.
Remember, your webinar campaign content strategy ensures you never forget who you're producing content for and why.
Perfectly Time Your Webinar for the Best Results
As a live event, the timing of your webinar will play a critical role in its success. Get the time wrong and you may miss your target audience, undermining your wider campaign efforts.
To ensure you’re timing the webinar correctly, you need to understand what works for your target audience and why.
While it’s of course different for each sector and persona, across the board, wider research suggests the best days for a webinar are Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.
On these days, the webinars held between 11AM and 2PM are often the most popular. With over 70% of webinars conducted in this time period (Gotomeeting), it’s clear that this peak is popular for a reason.
When choosing a time for your webinar:
- Avoid holiday periods and bank holidays
- Evaluate the unique circumstances of your target audience and their seniority when assessing their availability
- Depending on your relationship with the audience in question, consider reaching out and asking the best time for them
- If specific timing for the audience is unclear, use industry best practice - host on Tuesday/Wednesday/Thursday between 11AM and 2PM
Develop a Solid Webinar Acquisition Strategy to Maximise Attendance
Acquisition for your webinar is one of the most important pieces of the puzzle. Afterall, it doesn’t matter what you have to say if nobody is around to hear it.
With this in mind, it’s important to understand your audience and select the best marketing channel mix to maximise ROI and the quality of the audience.
The best webinar campaigns utilise a highly persuasive landing page that drives sign ups by giving away tidbits that allude to the value of the webinar.
This can make or break a campaign and highlights why you must understand what your audience is looking for. Emphasising the wrong messages can alienate your audience and severely hinder acquisition activity.
A good acquisition strategy should take advantage of both outbound and inbound channels to build the right audience for your webinar. But remember, whatever approach you use, it takes time.
Ideally you want to start your acquisition activity 2-3 months ahead of your event, unless you’ve already got a highly engaged audience. The last thing you want is a webinar with only a small number of people showing up as this has the potential to undermine your brand and your message.
Build a Post Campaign Nurture Strategy
Your webinar sits in the middle of your campaign, but once it’s been hosted, communications and activity shouldn’t end there. With a CRM full of leads, it’s important to continue those relationships.
A strategy is needed at this stage that helps to deliver value across these touchpoints after the event.
- How can you drive prospects to the next stage of the funnel?
- Where can you use marketing automation to minimise manual sales efforts
- What information do they need to know next that will deliver ongoing value?
- What offer or value-add can you entice them with to pull them into a sales conversation?
The answers to these questions should all be reflected in your post campaign activity.
This can be the difference between securing good ROI from your webinar campaign and no ROI at all, so it’s critical this activity is strategically planned.
Strategy - the Key to Webinar Campaign Success
Conducting a successful webinar campaign is reliant on a strategy that considers all relevant touch points throughout the funnel and focuses on delivering value every step of the way. It cannot be conducted as a single one-off event and must be considered the centre of a wider range of activity.
This activity should drive the right people to the webinar and generate regular engagement around the subject matter, before, during and after the event.
As a way of capturing prospects through signs up, nurturing them through regular content engagement and driving revenue through increased sales activity, a webinar campaign founded in good strategic thinking, has the potential to supercharge your business growth and position you as a forward-thinking thought leader.
Interested in learning more about how to run a successful webinar? Download our free guide: 10 Steps To Building The Ultimate B2B Webinar