You’ve seen the statistics and know that webinars are an important marketing channel in 2019. Maybe you’ve tried hosting a few webinars or meetings yourself. Were you impressed by the results? Did you experience some compelling webinar engagement with your attendees?
There are many reasons why a webinar could prove ineffective. One of the main ones is due to the lack of audience engagement. If your online event attendees aren’t interacting with your presentation, you won’t be able to use webinars to propel your business forward.
In this article, we’ll take a look at why webinar engagement is so valuable and discuss seven simple ways you can boost it during your next live broadcast. Let’s dive in!
The Value of Webinar Engagement
First things first, why is webinar engagement worth pursuing? Does it matter if your webinar attendees interact with you during your live broadcasts or not? Spoiler alert! Yes, webinar engagement does matter and is worth your time.
Why? Because engaged webinar attendees…
Buy More Products and Services
Webinars are a fantastic way to boost sales. DemandWave calls webinars one of the top revenue drivers for B2B marketers. But here’s the thing, webinar attendees only buy products and services from their hosts if they enjoy their webinar experiences.
If your audience tunes in to your webinar but doesn’t engage with it, two things will happen:
First, they’ll leave your webinar room and do something else with their time.
And second, they won’t buy anything from your company.
But when an attendee interacts with a webinar, things are very different. Not only will they watch your live broadcast until the very end, giving you more time to promote your company’s products; they’ll also be much more responsive to your offers and CTA buttons.
Why wouldn’t they be? They just had a great time consuming your content!
Sharing the Webinar Experiences
Word-of-mouth advertising has always been a marketer’s best friend. There’s nothing better than making your customers so happy that they share your company’s products, without expecting anything in return.
But once again, webinar attendees voicing their experiences on social media platforms, in blog posts, or to their colleagues at work are those who were amazed by the value provided by the webinar host, i.e. those who were fully engaged in the broadcast.
Well, that’s not completely true…
Folks who greatly disliked their webinar experience are also likely to share their thoughts online as well. This shows the importance of webinar engagement!
By creating an interactive atmosphere for your webinar attendees, you’ll make it much more likely that they’ll share positive reviews about your company rather than negative ones.
How to Boost Webinar Engagement
Webinar engagement can boost company revenue and make your marketing efforts easier, as we’ve just seen. Now, let’s discuss how to boost webinar engagement. The following seven tips will help create interactive webinar experiences that your attendees will love!
1. Create Great Content
It all comes back to great content. You could be the most dynamic speaker in the world and even broadcast from a professional and flashy production set, but if the information you share isn’t valuable to your target audience, it won’t matter. Your attendees won’t engage and you won’t experience any of the amazing benefits associated with webinars.
To create great content, you mustunderstand who your target audience is, what their likes and dislikes are, and at which stage of the buyer’s journey they are.
With this information, you can choose webinar topics that resonate with your ideal customers.
For example, if your company sells marketing software and your target attendees are marketing managers in their mid-thirties who are in the decision stage of the buyer’s journey (i.e. ready to make a purchase), you might create webinar content that explains the benefits of your offering.
If, on the other hand, your target attendees are in the awareness stage (i.e. still learning about the challenges they’re facing), you’d want to share more generalized marketing information.
2. Use Custom Visuals
Modern content creators, including webinar hosts, have a tough task to complete – we must create content that’s so engaging that people will choose to sit down and consume it rather than give in to the millions of distractions constantly bombarding them every day.
Fortunately, there are ways to cut through the noise and help your webinar attendees focus on and engage with the information you deliver during your live broadcasts. One of these ways is to create custom visuals that demand attention.
Customized charts and graphs that deliver relevant information will draw audience members in. Webinar rooms that offer Custom branding will add an air of professionalism to your broadcasts. And professionally draw illustrations will stick in the memories of your attendees.
Do your best to make your webinars visually appealing, and your audience will reward you with their attention and higher engagement levels.
3. Have a Conversation
New webinar hosts often make the mistake of “preaching” to their attendees rather than conversing with them. Don’t think of your webinar as a speech; think of it as a conversation.
Yes, you will likely be doing most of the talking as you share your content with the world. But don’t ignore your audience, or they’ll quickly lose focus.
Here are a few ways that you can start conversations with your viewers:
Q&A Section. Most successful webinars end with a Q&A session, in large part, because it’s a sure-fire way to get attendees to interact with hosts. Allow your guests to ask questions at the end of your broadcast, and you’ll see engagement levels rise.
Live Chat. It’s tough to have a conversation if only one person has the means to communicate. So ask your audience questions during your broadcast and respond to them in real-time via live chat. This feature will also give your guests the option to interact with each other, thus improving the webinar experience for all.
Polls and Surveys. Lastly, polls and surveys are excellent crowd engagers. You can use them to review the knowledge you’ve shared, find out the audience’s interests and challenges, learn how to craft better webinars in the future, and so much more!
To include live chat, polls, and surveys in your webinars, you need a software program that offers those features. ClickMeeting is a fully-featured webinar platform that makes it easy to have conversations with attendees via chat boxes and poll and survey options.
We briefly touched on this with our first tip about creating great content, but we want to expand on that a little more. Great content is actionable content.
After your viewers attend your webinars, they should be able to dosomething with the information you shared. If you only give them theoretical ideas and never relate to actionable advice, you’ll have a hard time keeping your attendees engaged.
One way to ensure the details you share are actionable is to prioritize value over sales. Unless you know that your next webinar will be completely dedicated to your company’s products and how attendees can purchase them, spend more time delivering relevant information than you do pitching your goods and services.
This strategy will keep your attendees interested and engaged. It will also make them more likely to buy from your company in the future because they’ll appreciate the value you delivered.
5. End with a Compelling CTA
Every webinar should end with a compelling Call-To-Action (CTA). But that doesn’t mean you need to pitch your company’s products at the end of every broadcast! CTA buttons can take many different shapes and forms.
For example, you could offer a free downloadable eBook as your CTA or invite your webinar guests to connect with you on social media.
Another option is to let your audience choose the CTA they want to engage with. You could give your guests the option to follow your company on social media, download an eBook, join your mailing list, andread a popular blog post on your website.
Then let them decide which option is right for them.
That being said, sometimes a sales pitch isthe right CTA to include. In such a scenario, make sure that the phrasing you use is enticing. Also, work hard to ensure the benefits of your offer are easy to understand. And finally, make your offer and its costs abundantly clear.
6. Post-Webinar Follow-Up
If your webinars are the only time you engage with your target market, you probably don’t have a very successful business. That’s why the post-webinar follow-up is so important!
By sending an email, asking your sales team to call, or connecting on social media, you’re extending the conversation you just had with your audience during your webinar. In most cases, this is where the real work of webinars is done.
Most attendees won’t buy anything from your company during your live broadcast. But if they found the information you delivered useful, there’s a good chance they’ll at least consider buying from you in the future, when they’re ready to make that kind of purchase.
Without a follow-up message of some sort, you run the risk of losing contact with your attendees and not achieving the sales you hoped for.
Always remember, webinar engagement shouldn’t end when your webinar does. In an ideal world, your live broadcast is just the first of many interactions between your company and the folks who attend your webinars.
7. Master Your Delivery
Our final tip for you today regarding webinar engagement is to master your delivery. People always engage more with charismatic speakers. But don’t worry if you’re not feeling comfortable in front of the camera. There are a few things you can do to be successful in this area:
Before you go live, know your content like the back of your hand and practice delivering it in front of the mirror. You may even want to record yourself speaking. This will help you discover ways to make your delivery smoother. It will also give you confidence knowing you’ve already run through the material and don’t have to “wing it.”
Have Confidence. Speaking of confidence, muster every ounce of it before your webinar and host your online event like the superstar you are! Your self-assured demeanor will lend your broadcast an air of authority and help position you as a tough leader in your niche, enticing your guests to engage more with you.
Put Your Audience First. At the end of the day, successful webinars prioritize the audience and put them above the immediate needs of the company. When you follow that approach, you’ll begin to feel more comfortable. After all, who cares if you stumble over your words from time to time if you are delivering quality information? No one!
A great delivery will go a long way towards enhancing webinar engagement. Fortunately, your delivery is something you can practice and get better at! As you begin to host more webinars, you’ll start to get more comfortable with the process, we promise.
More Effective Webinars
Engagement is crucial to the success of your webinars. Without it, you’ll have a hard time boosting revenue or enticing your attendees to share positive reviews of your broadcasts on social media and other outlets.
But you don’t have to worry about poor webinar engagement anymore! You now know seven ways to boost interactions during your live events. Simply:
- Create Great Content,
- Use Custom Visuals,
- Have a Conversation,
- Share Actionable Information,
- End with a Compelling CTA,
- Post-Webinar Follow-up,
- Master Your Delivery.
And don’t forget about ClickMeeting! Our powerful platform provides all the features you need to host amazing online events. From Custom branding options to poll and survey features to webinar recording capabilities, ClickMeeting will help you quickly boost engagement.
Try our webinar platform tool for free for the next 30 days and see for yourself!