Presented by Cvent
Audience expectations for webinars have changed. Do you continue? Just move on as industry experts come up with ten efficient and practical ways to revive your programs for success and inspire deep engagement and engagement from the audience.
Free access on demand here.
Laura Grandi-Hill, Event Marketing Manager at Airbase, Haley Hagerty, GM of Events at VentureBeat, and Patrick Smith, of Marvel, Moderator, joined by Stuart Rogers.
With the increasing importance of virtual events, attendees’ expectations have increased. They also want multiple ways to engage and network options when attending a virtual event, which has changed the way webinars look and feel.
“It’s important to be different now that there are so many in the market,” Haggarty said. “I like to say that stuff is queen. But you have to understand what your audience needs, then build content and then build a strong platform around it. It’s a win-win when you do that. “
It’s definitely about the stuff, Grandi-Hill agreed. In their case, they focused on targeting finance professionals. Realizing that these people do not have many ways to get advice and suggestions from experts on how to build their careers, Airbus decided to organize a career growth webinar.
“It wasn’t product-oriented at all, but about the needs of our prospects,” said Grandi-Hill. “We get really good feedback, because we provide value around a topic that is not really in place. It’s a way we can stand in the middle of the noise. It’s about having a great conversation. “
Experiment with webinar format
“Depending on what kind of content you’re presenting, the format is right for you, whether it’s a live interview, a fireside chat, or something more formal,” she said. “We’ve found that we have to match the format with the content and what it means most to deliver.”
During the epidemic they had to be very specific and thoughtful about how to shape the webinar series they wanted to offer. They started by thinking about where in the funnel every webinar should be targeting people. They tried to set the cadence, with each series offering new content on a regular basis, and each series having its own taste, specific to either the funnel stage or the possibility of a specific personality.
“We’ve found that if the content is very general, people aren’t engaged, but if we say, hey, we’re going to talk about the treasury function and how you can use the CARES Act, people come to it. “Because it is certain,” said Grandi-Hill. “It speaks to their needs.”
Short sessions are even more in demand, reduced from 45 minutes or an hour to 20 to 30 minutes of webinars with 20 minutes of content and 10 minutes of question and answer, Smith added.
“It’s bite-sized, hard hitting and I get a lot of value when I attend,” Smith said.
Their second successful format offers 20 minutes of content, and then features virtual networking with topics assigned in a video conference experience where you can talk live with panel members.
To keep viewers engaged
“The key is, webinars shouldn’t just be at the top of the slides anymore,” Smith said. “It’s the networking aspect, the chat you can do, and this personal networking is virtually where you see each other on the screen. It has been effective from our side. Expect to meet and network in a webinar, I’m not sure it was a few years ago. “
TV show ideas, not presentation, he adds. Instead of pointing the camera at just a few talking heads, think about adding dynamic screen layouts and graphics that capture the user’s interest.
“The good thing about most of these platforms, including Cvent, is that you can do it yourself – you don’t have to have a production team,” Hagarty said. “It’s important for people to know that. It’s partly about trial and error, but for me personally, do it all. Try it all. No one will say, oh, my eyes hurt, it was so amazing.” It was fun. “
Smith also suggested using video creatively before or during a webinar. For example, for viewers in the waiting room before the webinar starts, they may run an ad package promoting their user conference, or in the middle of the webinar, they will often play videos to increase the audience’s interest, because if they are watching something again, And as the screen changes, it is less likely to be zoned out.
“We’ve experimented a lot, this, get videos of puppies, because everyone loves puppies,” he added. “Sometimes we play something like that to get people’s attention. Even if it’s not related to the content. You can sometimes be fun and creative with some of these ideas. “
Rogers noted that attendees also respond to things like online conference bingo cards that he has taken advantage of for certain events.
“For example, if a pet walks on the screen, you can tick it,” he said. “We like it when pets walk on the screen. It really makes the webinar live, makes it more human. Full support. If you have pets in the house, make sure they jump in front of the camera.” “
Making the webinar interactive is another way to capture the interest of the participants and keep them away from flagging. If you are using an event platform that has the ability to break-out, Grandi-Hill suggests adding a very short one with a prompt at the beginning of the webinar to set the expectation that there will be interactive elements throughout. Webinars have good luck in voting, from testing their knowledge to getting opinions, because clicking on a poll to ask for an answer is not so big.
Smith agreed on the importance of chat. After Cvent’s virtual sales kickoff, many participants said they got more out of it than the live event of previous years, he said, because they can focus on on-screen content and chat with anyone in attendance.
“It’s created a very dynamic, funny, interactive element where you’re watching content, chatting about content, asking questions and people are joking,” he said. “It creates an interesting community of interactions and engagement that you don’t get in a personal event. I will not underestimate the chat. It is a great way to congratulate the winners, ask key questions, comment on things, have some fun.”
Don’t miss this VB Live event, free on demand, for more insights on how to make a webinar more attractive, how to measure success and how to move the needle, take advantage of your content after the webinar is finished, do the best market research and more.
See free on demand here.
You will learn:
- Tips for making sure your webinars are audience-focused
- Innovative ideas to connect with a virtual participant
- The best way to weave a webinar seamlessly into your event channel
- Laura Grande-Hill, Event Marketing Manager, Airbase
- Haley Hegarty, GM of Events, VentureBeat
- Patrick Smith, SVP and CMO, Cvent
- Stuart Rogers, Moderator, venturebeat