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Cision White Paper - The Wonder of Webinars
 

Cision White Paper - The Wonder of Webinars

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    Cision White Paper - The Wonder of Webinars Cision White Paper - The Wonder of Webinars Document Transcript

    • Webinars are interactive conferences that allow for real-time communication with an offsite audience. Most companies are using webinars externally to both educate and inform their audience of company and industry news, trends, and events. Product vs. Thought Leadership Webinars can be classified as product-related and thought leadership. Product-related webinars, webinars centered around a company’s specific needs, products/services and messaging, are important for current customers as well as prospects. These webinars give the company an opportunity to highlight its best features for the audience without the costs related to onsite demonstrations. Thought leadership webinars tend to focus on industry topics. For example, a recent Cision webinar “Leveraging LinkedIn for PR Pros,” focuses on how PR professionals can best utilize the social media outlet to generate business. How do you execute a lead-generating webinar? There are five key rules you should keep in mind The Wonder of Webinars: How to execute a successful event White Paper 332 S Michigan Ave., Chicago IL 60604 What can webinars do for YOU? • Sharing: Webinars allow a company the opportunity to share its expertise for little to no cost. At Cision we offer complimentary webinars in order to give our clients and prospects equal access to our thought leaders. By sharing your expertise on hot topics and industry trends, you are gaining invaluable credibility and adding to your brand’s appeal. • Engagement: Webinars are a great way to engage with your current customers and possible new customers. By answering questions and taking advantaging of the chat feature in most webinar software platforms, you are creating a personal, one-on-one experience for your attendee. Take advantage of it! • Knowledge: Webinars allow you to easily and directly gather important information about your key audience. By using polling questions and surveys throughout your webinar process, you get direct feedback from your most important and engaged customers and prospects. This is your chance to find out information like, “Where do you spend most of your time? Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter?” • Leads: Ultimately, we are all looking for a new or repeat customer. Webinars allow you to zero-in on who those prospects are and provides you with the perfect opportunity to reach out the them afterwards. A key feature of a webinar is its interactive elements -- the ability to give, receive and discuss information. Contrast with a webcast, in which the data transmission is one way and does not allow interaction between the presenter and the audience. us.cision.com  866.639.5087  Follow us:  Copyright © Cision, Inc. All Rights Reserved. 5/13
    • when planning for a year of attention-getting webinars: 1. Be organized and relevant When planning out your webinar schedule for the upcoming months, make sure you pick topics that are hot in the industry and that your audience wants to hear about. What is everyone else talking about? Is that topic being over-mentioned? What influencers in the industry can you get to co-host your webinar? Once you have an idea of what topics/speakers will be covered in each month, try to nail down dates as soon as possible. The sooner you do this the sooner you can begin promoting your upcoming event. 2. Create compelling promotions Once you have an interesting topic and expert speaker for your webinar, it’s important to have a compelling title, talking points and imagery that can be used in the promotion of your event. Key places to promote your webinar include: your website, intranet, external event sites, social media outlets and via email to your customers and prospects. 3. Utilize your outside audiences Having a guest speaker or webinar co-host? Great! Take advantage of their growing network by asking them to promote your webinar to their audience. You will get a new audience and the possibility for new customers. 4. Interact with your audience Don’t just talk at your webinar attendees. Interact with them through poll questions, surveys and pre- and post-webinar follow-up emails. Most importantly, make sure to engage as much as possible by “chatting” or replying to questions, even if you do not know the answer. For example, a reply stating, “Hi, Janet! Thanks for asking about social media sites. If we do not have time to answer this during the webinar, I will make sure someone follows up with you afterwards via email,” will make a huge difference to your attendee. 5. Follow-up If you say you are going to do something, do it! “At Cision, we always send a link to our webinar slides and the recorded version of the webinar. We also have a 4-5 question survey that pops up after the webinar to provide useful tips for our next webinar,” explains Vanessa Bugasch, Senior Vice President of Global Marketing at Cision. If you offer a free-trial of your product it is good to have a representative contact the attendee within 24 hours of the event. According to a survey done by responseaudit.com, “most companies throw away business by failing to respond to leads properly.” Answering a poll question, assuming you are asking the correct poll question, can determine whether a lead is hot, warm or cold. How can I capture information during a webinar? 1. Capture Information: Now that you have an audience, what do you want to know? Do you want to know where they spend most of their time? (LinkedIn, Twitter, or Facebook) This may tell you the best outlet to communicate to your audience. White Paper 332 S Michigan Ave., Chicago IL 60604 us.cision.com  866.639.5087  Follow us:  Copyright © Cision, Inc. All Rights Reserved. 5/13
    • Polling questions allows you to capture this key demographic information about your audience while you have their full attention. 2. Request Feedback: If you are going to spend the time and effort hosting an event, make sure you are giving the audience what they want. Ask things like, “Can you hear us?” and “Were your questions answered today?” Questions like these show your audience that their needs are your number one priority and helps you alter your webinar for the future. Most likely you will get more than just a one word response. 3. Gain Insight: You can also use webinars to gather insight on your future events. Ask your attendees what topics they want to learn more about and what influencers they’d like to hear speak. This saves you time trying to guess what your audience wants to hear and gives you direct insight as to what people are not getting from other resources. Those are the basics. Webinars can be one of your easiest forms of product leads. Put yourselves in your attendees’ shoes. What do you expect when you are watching a webinar, presentation or demonstration? And now do it better. White Paper 332 S Michigan Ave., Chicago IL 60604 us.cision.com  866.639.5087  Follow us:  Copyright © Cision, Inc. All Rights Reserved. 5/13