Webinars have historically sat at the top of the marketing funnel. But new insights from an expert in the field of webcasting show it’s time for media players and marketers to rethink that approach.
During a year that has forced members of the media landscape to adapt quicker than any other, the humble webinar has been thrust into the limelight as a valuable weapon on the marketing journey.
Chances are, however, that many of us have been forced to dabble in webcasting for the very first time—and alongside reaching into a fresh media space comes failure, and pitfalls.
Whether that means learning how to avoid the awkward, unflattering double chin of notorious webcam fame, or how to kill the wordy slide, Tim Johnston, the marketing director for ON24, had all the answers in the recent ’10 Common Webinar Mistakes’ webinar.
Delivered in collaboration with B&T, the webinar (which you can watch back here) saw Johnston reveal how you can avoid 10 of the most common pitfalls of this new, lucrative webcasting space.
It also revealed that, aside from being a necessity when social distancing restrictions stop face-to-face interaction, webinars can play an important role in all stages of the buyer journey.
“Whilst webinars have traditionally sat at the top of the funnel,” Johnston explained during the webinar, “we believe webinars can be much more than that.”
Whether that’s at the awareness stage, at the start of the journey with you or right through to purchase, they can play an active role in helping educate and grow your customers.
But to do that, you need to deliver your webinars well—avoiding common pitfalls along the way.
Here’s a couple to keep your eye on.
Test, then rest
During 10 Common Webinar Mistakes, attendees revealed in a poll that their biggest fears, when it comes to running webinars of their own, are technical issues (65.4 per cent).
Johnston believes the best way to avoid issues of this nature is to test, retest, and test again.
“Depending on the platform that you’re using … there are a lot of things that you need to check, from the audience’s perspective and the experience that you’re creating for them, the presenters’ experience and making sure that all of your presenters are comfortable as well,” he said.
“You shouldn’t reserve this to the day of the webinar. That’s living on the edge a bit.”
This means checking videos, slides, and builds, checking the console layout, and checking links to content options and CTAs. (Handy hint: create a webinar checklist.)
Johnston added: “We start our QA process usually a week out from the live date, so that we’ve got plenty of time to correct anything.”
No Rockstar arrivals
One of the biggest mistakes Johnston comes across is having presenters rock up for a webinar, believing they can deliver on the spot.
But, as he explains, while this may work in person, the digital space is less forgiving.
“This is probably my favourite mistake,” Johnston said. “We saw this a lot earlier in the year where a lot of presenters were rocking up just minutes before going live because they’re used to doing this in the physical world.
“But this idea of Rockstar arrivals really doesn’t work too well in the digital space. You have to make sure you build in these check times.”
Embrace your background
And, if things go unexpectedly wrong, like, say, a cat or a dog jumps into your lap while you’re conducting a webinar at home, lean into it.
Because it all adds to the authenticity of working from home.
“There’s all sorts of moments that can turn magical, if you do find yourself fumbling or something goes wrong,” Johnston tells attendees.
For more insight into how to conduct, and deliver, the very best webinars, you can check out ON24’s 10 Common Webinar Mistakes, which is available for viewing here.
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