It goes without saying that 2020 was a year to forget, so don’t fret – I won’t be setting the scene to this blog post by writing what has already been said about a year to forget for just about all of us.
What I will say is that the past year has resulted in a drastic reduction in direct, face-to-face contact with clients and customers for thousands of businesses. Where once business, sales, relationships and check-ins could be conducted in person, be that in an office, a coffee shop or at a conference, 2020 torpedoed all of that and reduced us to sitting at our table at home, trying to squeeze in the meeting agenda before Zoom’s frustrating 40-minute time-limit was reached.
Many businesses saw the light relatively early on and jumped aboard a trend that would come to dominate and elevate businesses’ social media strategies last year: a webinar series. No longer did these businesses have to set up back-to-back-to-back meetings to check in with contacts, or mass send emails detailing their new offering in the hope that their database would open them. Instead, a webinar was scheduled, allowing them to gather dozens of existing customers, would-be clients and key figures in their sector, and recreate that one-to-one experience.
We at The PHA Group worked with a number of businesses last year to build, manage, execute and assess their webinar strategies to great effect: we constantly drew in noteworthy crowds, we generated interest and engagement through social media engagement, and, perhaps most importantly, we contributed to growth, helping our clients secure new businesses and renew with existing ones.
2021 may promise a return to normality that we are all yearning for, but that still appears to be at least a quarter or two away. For now, the time is still ripe to launch a webinar series of your own. Here’s 3 reasons why:
- It’s The Thought (Leadership) That Counts
One of the major reasons as to why people decide to tune into webinars is the value-factor: the chance to tune into an industry expert and engage with them and like-minded audiences.
With that in mind, our webinar strategies aren’t just focussed on sales or product promotion; we develop a series built around thought leadership and demonstrating expertise. We often build sessions around a panel of experts, featuring both figures from our client as well as prominent names from the wider industry. Such an approach builds legitimacy, qualifies your business as one that is worth tuning into, and ultimately creates a more engaging session featuring audience interaction, Q&As and discussion.
It is the feeling that a user is getting value simply from tuning into a webinar that retains their interest, keep them coming back to future sessions and potentially opens up a lead-generating dialogue afterwards.
- ROI That You Can Physically Measure
One of the key benefits of a webinar series is the range of stats and figures that can be measured. Starting with social media, our expert social team ensure that webinar promotion reaches your exact target audience through both organic and paid campaigns across all social media channels, be it a specific company, sector, or region. Next, our webinar software lets us measure everything from registration and attendance figures to the source channel they registered from, as well as engagement insights such as the time each user tuned in for and questions submitted. What’s more, webinars can be made available on-demand afterwards, further extending the shelf-life of each session and allowing us to promote further afield to your social media audiences.
Such reporting insights not only allows you to assess whether the webinar series itself was successful, but also lets you track the user journey from registration to attendance to follow-up, plus the impact of the campaign on your growth line.
- Build Your Database and Reap Rewards
Beyond the topic, the promotion and the actual live event, the real value of a webinar series for our clients lies in the data and knowledge that can be extracted. The registration process that we put in place means that you can be provided with a data-base of perspective clients and existing customers that can be incredibly valuable to businesses. Often, such databases can be used within follow-up email campaigns and sales team outreach, providing another chance to engage potential customers. In this data-driven world, such information can represent a gold-mine for those businesses looking to use webinar series to grow their business and reach new users.
There are of-course many more reasons as to why a webinar series should be a core communications strategy, from the boost it offers your social media strategy in the form of rich content and outputs, to the exposure it provides to senior figures at your company, but that is for another insight.
For now, if any of the above interests you, or if you want to talk more about how a webinar strategy could contribute to your business objectives in 2021, get in touch with one of our social team at The PHA Group.