A Little Known Secret to Webinar Success

Want to know a secret?

By Eric Brown, BodyWorkBiz.com


I know that you’re reading this on the AnyMeeting blog, so I don’t have to tell you about all the great reasons to host webinars.

Whether it’s to generate leads and build your list, promote your products or services, or sell your expertise, webinars are an effective way to connect in a personal and powerful way with a targeted audience. But sometimes the process of getting sufficient numbers of people to your broadcast can be a daunting one:

  • You may not have a large network of contacts
  • You may not have the resources to reach the people you want to connect with
  • You may be an expert in your field, but you may not be great at marketing or selling

The bottom line: You need help getting audience members in your virtual seats.

Whatever your situation may be, the easiest way to overcome those obstacles and to get the viewers you need is by partnering with an individual or organization who already has a relationship with your target audience.

You can leverage your partner’s resources in a variety of ways to ensure your success. They’ve invested a great deal of time and money to develop and build a relationship a large network of customers, members, employees or volunteers. By partnering you can leverage those existing relationships and borrow the trust and reputation your partner has with their network. You don’t have to start from scratch.

Just because you’re leveraging their resources doesn’t mean that you’re using or taking advantage of your partner. The secret to a successful partnership, also called a joint venture, is ensuring that everyone involved comes away a winner: You, your partner and their network. There has to be value for all three parties.

Let me give you an example of how this works. A number of years ago I was working at developing leads for a web-based project. To grow our list fast, I looked at partnering with a large industry association. This association had an annual conference and I knew that the number of attendees had been dropping, so I offered to help them by hosting broadcasts of some of their top speakers. These broadcasts would be offered for free to their entire membership and they would give the association members a chance to get a taste for the topics covered. It also allowed some of their top presenters to showcase their knowledge with the goal of whetting the members’ appetite for more at the live event.

I offered to take care of all the logistics with the presenters and take care of the entire production of the webinars. All the association had to do was send several emails to their members. The emails promoted this free webinar series. Members could hear and even interact with some of the top industry experts at no cost. If someone wanted to attend all they needed to do is fill out a form with their name and email address and they were immediately sent the webinar details through an autoresponder.

The results: After just four one-hour webinars I had built an email list of over 3,000 people, all of who were prime prospects for my other offerings.

I did not have to send the promotional emails. I did not have to prepare the presentations or develop educational materials. The time I invested was minimal. All it cost was a couple hundred dollars to set up a small website and a small monthly fee for an autoresponder.

Everybody walked away happy. The association got some great promotion for their convention, the presenters got wider exposure, the association members got to hear experts they would not normally have an opportunity to hear and I grew my prospect list in a really big way.

So next time you decide to offer a webinar, think about utilizing partnerships to help ensure your success. Think about the individuals or groups that already have relationships with the people you want to reach and come up with ways to partner where everyone can walk away a winner.

What organizations could you partner with for your webinar? Share your ideas in the comments.

How USA Uses Social Media and Gaming To Gain Viewers

Catch the Hash Tag Killer and win

By Kate Croston, Internet Service

This is a special guest post by one of our AnyMeeting users. Want to write for the AnyMeeting blog? Get the details.

So you want to market your business with social media? You’ve tried to get started on Twitter and Facebook, and it has been modestly successful. But you just want that edge. That little push that’ll put your company over the competition. Something beyond ads and discounts; beyond reward programs and loyalty points. There has to be something more.

There is. Social media is just that- social. People want to interact, to become part of a community, to feel like a family. They want to know people, not robots, and want more than just information. They want to experience. But how can you do that?

One example of truly using social media to the fullest is USA’s (a cable network) experiment. Using the show Psych, a crime/comedy geared towards 18-30 year olds, USA is both overcoming an obstacle and strengthening their fan base. Using social media, they are breaking the marketing mould.

First of all, they had to overcome a huge obstacle for cable television. Their moderately popular show, Psych, was airing months later than it was supposed to. There were all kinds of reasons for that, but the point is they were going to lose viewers. How did the company fight the loss? In a truly ingenious way.

You would assume that they would run commercials promoting the new date and time for the show. And you’d be right. But beyond the creative (and funny) commercials, they knew they had to do more. Social media was the answer. But how do you get people onto your site to even receive the Tweets or wall posts? The answer was truly inventive.

You make a game. That’s right, a game. An online, weeks-long, crime-solving game. And you use the real actors from the show. Sure, it takes some planning, a lot of creative programming, and a little screen time, but it will pay off. Big time.

Using the actors gives the game a gravitas. A reality. The fans don’t just play a game; they interact with the characters they love. They become part of a community, joining together to find clues and stop the Hash Tag Killer before he strikes again.

Best of all, every time they play they earn points towards online and actual stuff. So they keep coming back. But to join the game they must sign in using either their Twitter or Facebook accounts. When they join, they give USA permission to post to their sites. So, not only does USA get their participation, they also get to solicit their friends and followers.

Marketing at its finest. The fans get something, the company gets something, and everyone goes away happy. Not only that, but USA expands its network without any more effort. A fun game equals word of mouth, and more people to come play. After all, who doesn’t want to be Sherlock Holmes?