Like all communication technologies, you need to evaluate whether webinars fall in line with your brand’s strategic marketing objectives and if they meet the needs of your target market. Although webinars work well in some circumstances, they don’t in others. Therefore, you need to ask yourself some key questions before deciding to leverage this tool.
Crucial Questions to Ask Before Making a Decision
- Is your audience tech savvy? While most web conferencing providers do not require audience members to install software prior to joining a webinar, there may be supporting software, such as the most recent version of Adobe Flash Player, that your viewers may be prompted to download. As a result, you need to be mindful of leads, prospects, or customers who can barely open their emails, let alone register for and attend a webinar.
- Are prospects based across geographically dispersed locations? Depending on the type of business you run, you may have a very small client base located locally—buyers you can easily visit in a single trip. If that’s the case, then webinar marketing is likely not for you. However, if you’re attempting to reach customers globally, then this could be the perfect communication medium for educating and connecting with your consumer base.
- Are you desperate for an inexpensive alternative? When certain expenses, such as those involved in travel or face-to-face training, become too prohibitive, webinar marketing could offer your business a cheap and equally effective solution.
- Can you conduct your presentations within a reasonable timeframe? The average webinar runs for 45 to 60 minutes. If your subject matter requires extensive coverage, you may find it’ll be better suited to a traditional daylong training conference. Alternatively, you can split your topics and information into smaller chunks that would form part of a webinar series. Keep in mind when developing your webinar marketing plan that you’re likely to lose audience interest if your webinars are too long.
- Will your business need to conduct follow-ups after real-world events? If you consistently host large corporate events, seminars, conferences, tradeshows, or functions of a similar kind, think about using webinars as your communication channel for following-up and maintaining relationships with groups of people. You may find web conferencing is more effective than phone or email.
- Will on-going education improve sales, customer satisfaction, and ultimately lead to increased retention? If you believe you can leverage this tool to drive better engagement, enhance the value of your offerings with additional information, and help customers utilize your products and services more effectively, then webinars are definitely worth a shot.
- Do you have the necessary resources to create and host webinars? While this tool is still relatively inexpensive when compared to other options, there are still costs involved. If your marketing budget can handle it, then give webinar marketing a go.
If you’re still uncertain whether webinars meet your business needs, consider soliciting advice and feedback from others. Ask potential audience members whether they’d be receptive to online training, gather feedback from experts on the subjects you intend to tackle, and evaluate what competitors are doing. A little research can go a long way to helping you determine whether webinars are the right medium for your audience.
Does your business use webinars? What has your experience been like? Let us know by leaving a comment below.