B-to-B Webinar recommendations and resources

Content Rules bookMarketo blog, Pinpointe webinar, and Rally Point Webinars are main sources for this collection:

Webinars are ubiquitous; these recommendations relate to webinar promotion, its power as a lead generation tool, assuring that registrants actually attend, and the webinar potential as a content for future needs.

  1. I see more references to add Twitter # and LinkedIn group to webinars to allow attendees communication during and after the event. This approach can help to promote the webinar, engage the attendees, and also increase number of right audience as Twitter followers and LinkedIn group members. The only concern I see is the need to have a right Twitter account and LinkedIn group (account for the right audience, not the one used to publish job openings and press releases of unrelated topics). Marketo attributes growth in its LinkedIn group to active invitation of webinar attendees to join the group and access the presenters, other attendees, webinar slides. 
  2. Important to promote webinar more than just a week in advance (based on On24).
  3. Based on On24 analysis, email to house list is the most effective method of webinar promotion. Social media is not that effective as a promotional venue.
  4. Webinar topic: “Go big, or go tactical.”  MarketingProfs use a mix of “how to” webinars and strategic topics with big-name presenters.
  5. Pre-webinar article can be used to determine the best title for the webinar (email split test or web site testing can be used; by guess PPC A/B can be used too, but PPC programs have typically different objectives.
  6. Pre-webinar podcast: interview the speaker and publish the podcast on registration page/email.  Publishing the podcast on the registration page can increase the conversion.
  7. Promotion of the webinar 2 weeks in advance; strongest push 2 days before the event (sense of urgency); two most powerful words: “free” and “tomorrow.”
  8. It is possible to rent a list of targeted publication to invite prospects to the webinar who are not on the house list.
  9. Use a known speaker and borrow his/her audience (promotion of the webinar to the speaker’s followers).
  10. Design the webinar registration page as a landing page rather than an afterthought (what happens 🙂 ).
  11. Call attendees to remind them about the event to increase the attendance (the call can be automated) – I experienced it as an attendee – very impressive first time – and it worked – this was the only webinar I attended live during last several months 🙂
  12. Automation of webinar promotion and follow up emails with Eloqua cloud connectors
  13. Email webinar promotion: if any intensive is needed, business-specific intensive works better than iPod, etc. giveaway (based on Pintointe testing  of subject lines of webinar registration email).
  14. Email webinar promotion: short subject line works better than long and/or personalized one (based on Pintointe testing  of subject lines of webinar registration email).
  15. Email webinar promotion: possibly to re-send after a week to those who have not opened the email, what can be easily automated (based on Pintointe testing  of subject lines of webinar registration email).
  16. Email webinar promotion: try sending the invitation from an individual person’s name rather than a general address – testing possibility  (based on Pintointe testing  of subject lines of webinar registration email). 
  17. Industry average: 1% registration from an email list (beware of benchmarks – use your data 🙂 )
  18. Industry average: 50% of registrants will attend; 30% will watch the recording later (beware of benchmarks – use your data 🙂 )
  19. Industry average: 50% of the attendees participate in the polls (though can go down to 20%)
  20. Industry average: 20% of the attendees participate in the exit surveys
  21. Industry average: 10% drop off rate  (beware of benchmarks – use your data 🙂 )
  22. Industry average: 25% – short term leads (buy within 6 months); 50% – long term leads (buy within 6 months to 2 years)
  23. Engaging people during the event: asking questions through chat features quadruples the partidipation.
  24. Webinars with videos have 24% higher attendance rate and higher conversions
  25. Make the recording available as an on-demand webinar that can be used as a lead-gen tool.
  26. A free consultation as an offer after a webinar can be a good lead-gen technique
  27. On-demand webinars can be accessible/promoted on the home page of the site – it is a popular content.
  28. Provide PPT PDF…  people like printing them.
  29. Webinar transcript can be used as a web site or blog content (I am probably not the only one who thinks SEO at this point… 🙂 )
  30. Webinar Q&A can be a material for podcasts, blog posts, etc.
  31. Webinar poll can also be used as a material for the following blog post
  32. Carefully craft your final slide – it should include clear calls to actions
  33. Get feedback (use a post-event survey)
  34. In the follow-up email, beside link to the webinar materials, ask if the attendee had any questions that have not been unanswered: “Do you have any new questions… “
  35. Test resources area on the web site where webinar registration and/or materials can be found. Mail Chimp test featured in Which Test Won showed that “online training” button was more attractive to site visitors than “webinars” button…  It depends on the audience – tests are needed.

CATFOA – Hyper Island and the future of digital marketing

An interesting discussion with more questions than answers… or, rather no answers in the nearest future.  The perception of Hyper Island USA Managing Director Anders Sjostedt (@anderssjostedt) about the current (and future) state of digital marketing was quite clear – the future is unknown.

Hyper Island is a school started in Sweden in the beginning of digital revolution to prepare employees for the industry.  The school was started not by an educational institution, but by an organization that could not find qualified employees and resided it had no choice but to train rather then hire.  The result was a school with an unusual approach and growing popularity. The popularity contributed to the creation of a 3-day master course for agencies and corporations which is highly regarded in Europe and recently expanded to the US.

The “representation” of a school is also unusual – a video produced by the students and found on YouTube became the organization’s official video.

The main paradigm of the conversation – including questions from the audience – was probably “there is no map – explore…  everybody is doing the same.”

It is not digital what is important – the fundamental changes in the environment are important. Digital is just the “current” or “platform” that can be used to address these changes. But how?  Experiment.

A few questions from the audience hoped for a specific “formula” that can be used…  If you would create a brand-new agency now, what roles would the employees have? Agencies used to have certain structure and employees could fairly easily move around, now everything is different… and nothing is clear…  I thought about asking about a “brand-new corporate digital department”  🙂   The answer would have been the same – there are no answers… if somebody has an answer now, it will be outdated tomorrow.

Oh, our wonderful times of organizational confusion 🙂  The downside is unpredictability and constant change…  The upside is universal confusion – everybody face it, and no degrees or courses will give answers.  Hyper Island seems to try to teach how to accept the life of questions…