How to Use Webinars for Content Strategy Success

Is your engagement lacking? Learn how to use Webinars for content strategy gains by using a more engaging and personal interaction with your audience.

Webinars for Content Strategy

Image Source: Zoom Webinars

What are webinars?

A webinar, known alternatively as “webcast,” “web seminar,” or “online event,” is where an individual, organization, or company broadcasts to a group of individuals via the internet. Webinars are available through computers, tablets, and mobile devices.

Located anywhere globally, the speaker at the webinar can share presentations, videos, web pages or other multimedia content with viewers. 

Webinars are typically made up of two components, audio and visual. The speaker or moderator can share the visible part via webinar software or an internet browser. The audio is broadcast through the device’s speakers.

Webinars for content strategy is a valuable tool as they allow direct interactions with the speaker by allowing questions in real-time through a messaging tool or email.

Why use webinars in your content strategy?

Webinars are a powerful tool in your content marketing toolbox. The aim is to use them as an integral part of the plan, not as an aside. Webinar marketing is a relatively new marketing tactic, and some businesses are unsure about including it in their strategies. 

This uncertainty can be an advantage as not everyone is adopting webinars; there is room for early adopters to proliferate their involvement.

With myths being debunked, it is time for businesses to embrace different types of webinars in their strategy and have them play a significant role in their marketing. By adopting webinars, you will benefit from a powerful medium to spread your message that could have substantial ROI benefits.

They are, after all, another great way to showcase your quality content and position yourself as a leader in your marketplace. Perhaps webinars are underutilized because there are many hurdles to jump through, from planning content to getting attendees. After all, no one wants to feel like they just hosted a party and no one showed up.

Are webinars a growth medium?

Webinars are still the poor cousin to video content in most companies’ strategic decisions. That perception leads marketers to disagree about the benefits of webinars. Although challenging to swallow for some PR and marketing teams, the reality is that studies are showing high conversion rates using webinars. One case study put the conversion rates in the 30-40% region. 

Now that the cat is out of the bag, companies are starting to look seriously at using webinars for generating new leads. And, of course, your webinar can always include video content to get the best of both worlds.   

How to Use Webinars for Content Strategy Success


1. Build an in-house database of customers and prospects

Content may be king, especially for webinars, but your database rules. Email marketing has long been the most effective method to inform people. 

Keeping a clean database of people you have already had interactions with is paramount to getting the best results. 

You will need a substantial list of potential attendees. Even with a list of agreed subscribers, the attendance record is only around 40-45%. You need to ensure that your marketing collects client data for later use across all channels with numbers like these. E-newsletter subscribers are a substantial source of attendees as they already trust the information you are providing.

Tip: Extend this practice to trade shows, in-person sales calls, and meetings by bringing physical (printed) copies of your newsletters and key online offers. As you deliver the physical newsletter, ask for the prospect’s email address “so that we can send you future issues by email.” This shows consideration while also being good marketing strategy — and you are building loyalty

Keep offering free newsletters or other content assets to build your database. With the average webinar attendee number being 260 and an attendance rate of 40%, you will need 650+ active subscribers to register for your webinar to meet the “average attendance” challenge. Time your webinar for weeks that your industry isn’t unusually busy, as 83% of attendees state they only view one webinar per week. 


2. Decide how to position your webinar financials

Suppose your webinar can provide real value – strategies, tips, news, insider information, or other engaging content that an attendee could use in their jobs. In that case, you may be able to charge a fee for attending. Do not underestimate the perceived value of having to pay for a service. FREE often comes with sponsors or advertising in marketing these days, which can put off potential attendees.

I once worked for a company giving away a high-value product on trial for free. It is challenging to convince people that free is free, and that it doesn’t come with a catch further down the line.

Provide a webinar program with valuable, helpful content to your subscribers. You might consider offering them a considerable discount or making it accessible to subscribers but charge a fee to non-subscribers. Whether you charge a fee or go free, remember that your attendees’ time is valuable to them. Ensure it is well spent absorbing engaging, educational content the whole time. If you waste their time, they will not return.


3. Keep the content tightly focused


Webinar attendees are interested in learning. They are giving up their valuable time to understand a subject better. It is best to drill down into a topic in detail rather than skim over the top of a broad subject matter.  

Run by a firm of accountants, one very popular webinar is only offered when there is new legislation that affects their industry. They go into great detail on its effects on the attendees’ clients, and because of this, it is attended very highly.

With most webinars lasting about one hour, followed by a question and answer section, there is not enough time to take on a broad topic and do it justice. So, ensure the script and the speaker go into detail and offer tips and strategies that have a real-world use in the industry they represent. There are some excellent webinar templates to help formulate your event to assist you on the correct path for an engaging webinar. For a business that is new to developing multimedia content, there are easy-to-use video editors for marketers to achieve high-quality results.

Also, check the PowerPoint presentation for errors and make sure that the speaker has rehearsed their presentation. Checking for mistakes may seem obvious, but a muddled presentation will not make the webinar cohesive. Remember, obvious errors in one webinar make it more difficult to increase or maintain attendance numbers in your future webinars. 


4. Always deliver high-quality webinars

Marketing departments often make the mistake of concentrating on “marketing.” Please do not use your webinar to plug or try to sell your product or service. It is a webinar, not an infomercial.

To ensure your viewers have a fantastic experience, do not neglect any technical issues that could spoil the attendees’ experience.

During the prep session, give yourself sufficient time to iron out any technical issues such as sound quality. Ensure your presenters and speakers are online at least 30 minutes before going live. Being online early will give them time to go over the flow of the presentation. Do not forget to put ALL mobile phones on silent for the duration of the webinar, as no one wants a telephone to interrupt the production.


5. Always deliver value 

When planning your webinar, look for five or six key points to benefit your attendees. These could be examples of what not to do, how to save money, do something better, or add value to the attendees’ clients and customers. 

What if you cannot identify these key points? In that case, your attendees will not remember them either, and the presentation will be weak. If you can isolate the key points and deliver them powerfully, it opens up opportunities later for promotional copy.


6. Don’t promote your webinar series as a “series”

If your attendees feel that they will have to commit to an entire series to get the full benefit, your uptake will take a nosedive. People don’t necessarily want to “commit” to that amount of time to be fully informed. 

Each webinar should be able to stand on its own. The adage “leave them wanting more” works for webinars. After completing one webinar, then tell your attendees that a second presentation is scheduled and tell them when. 

You are more likely to get sign-ups from fully engaged people. Eventually, during your “series,” they will look forward to the next chapter.

After a successful presentation, contact the attendees within a short timeframe, whilst you are still front of mind, and offer them an opportunity to sign up for the next webinar only.

By the way, this non-series “series” approach works best if it reflects your brand look. That means carrying your design through from your website to your promotional messages and your webinar graphics. Although that sounds easy, it’s actually a challenging project that takes complete focus and true design sensibilities. So for a successful, informative, and uplifting presentation on all digital fronts, you might want to begin your web design and webinar design projects at the same time with the same creative team.


7. Offer an on-demand and a live version

Due to time constraints and even worldwide time zones, watching your webinar live may not be convenient. On-demand availability offers attendees the option of convenience. 

An attendee may wish to sign up multiple people within an organization to watch at a more convenient time or use your webinar as a training tool within the office. Your technology provider should be able to allow paid-for on-demand links to be available after the original purchase date. You could even charge different rates for how long the subscriber would like access to the webinar.

Once you have built up a library of events, you could also sell full access rights to new subscribers who have not had the opportunity to view past presentations.


In Parting

A well planned and professionally presented webinar is a powerful tool for your future content strategy success. If you have a big launch or a significant non-series “series” coming up, and a budget to support it, it’s worthwhile to bring in a professional design agency to boost your impact. 

It can be daunting for a business to begin using webinars for content strategy, but the conversion percentages make it worth the effort. Still, you could always start small with a few select and sympathetic subscribers who could act as a viewers panel. They could provide meaningful feedback for improvement before taking your webinar presentation out into the wider world.

If you have some low attendance at your initial events, treat them as practice runs. Do not be disheartened, and keep improving.