50% of New Customers Attended a Webinar First

We often talk about how success companies host webinars regularly and share tips and tricks to help you grow your business and hold great webinars. But sometimes, we are the ones that learn from our customers who have found great success with their webinar programs.

Over the last 18 months, Jeremy Koenig, Creative Director, at MobileCause, a VC-backed mobile software firm for non-profit fundraising, has committed to investing in a webinar program for their mobile and online fundraising solutions to spur a new generation of donors. But it hasn’t always been easy.

“We’ve made every mistake in the book,” Koenig confessed. On top of making several mistakes early on, MobileCause also found that their leads were much more likely to download an infographic or an eBook than sign up for a webinar. On the surface, MobileCause’s webinars were not successful.

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It’s imperative when putting together a webinar program, that you know exactly what your goals are. Are you looking to increase your number of leads, shorten your sales cycle, reduce churn, or become thought leaders in your industry. Depending on your audience and the type of webinars you produce, your goals and KPIs should be specific.

MobileCause decided on a two-fold goal. They wanted to shorten their sales cycle and become thought leaders in the non-profit fundraising space. After committing to a webinar program despite their doubts due to disproportionately fewer leads than with other content initiatives they found that 50% of their customers who signed up in a month had attended a webinar first.

Selling, Without Selling

Webinars are a fantastic way to spread your industry knowledge and become an authority in your space. But few potential customers what to attend a Webinar where they are going to be sold a product. They attend because they want to learn and get better at their craft or find solutions to problems they have encountered.

In their webinars, MobileCause has been sharing expert in demand fundraising advice to nonprofits by being on the forefront of trends. “Answer the questions people are asking,” Koenig stated about how to pick a webinar topic. You can find what is being asked by looking through your website’s Keyword data, see what’s trendy on social media or even what other webinars in your space are talking about.

In MobileCause’s research, they found that Millennials are less likely to respond to traditional fundraising efforts, instead they are more likely to respond to SMS, Social Media or mobile friendly registration forms. They also were quick to see the opportunity that Facebook Live could present in the fundraising space, as it’s an easy way to host a worldwide event at zero cost. Teaching their audience about these methods, while showing examples that used their product helps create a more informed lead that felt they genuinely benefited from the webinar, whether or not they sign up for MobileCause.

Screen Shot 2017-06-16 at 12.32.09 PMIn one month, Koenig recalled receiving 6000 leads. Only 1000 of those leads were from Webinars, but 50% of those that became customers had attended a webinar. Their sales team reported having shorter conversations as the value of the product was clear to those that attended the webinars. This proved that MobileCause had met both of their goals, shortening their sales cycle and becoming thought leaders. Webinars are now a permanent part of their marketing stack.

Your Own Webinars May Not Be Enough

Putting together your own webinar program is a fantastic way to grow your business. On the AnyMeeting blog we have talked about about the importance and steps to securing guest speakers or improving audience engagement. However, there is one aspect of webinars that we haven’t touched on: Becoming a guest speaker yourself.

Jeremy Koenig shared that it can sometimes be very difficult to secure a guest speaker. This is no reason not to hold a Webinar. Though having expert speakers is an added benefit, you can also round up your internal team or be your own speaker. In the end, it’s the content that matters.

For MobileCause, and also for our team at AnyMeeting, one piece of the guest speaker strategy is seeking our customers with a success story. Koenig tells us that his team will reach out to several customers and maybe a few will agree to participate.

What often goes unspoken is the impact the guest speaking spot has for the speaker’s business. Koenig recalled one speaker who was relatively unknown, but after joining their Webinar with over 1000 attendees had begun to see growth in their own business.

Partnering with other businesses with a pre-existing webinar program could be a great way to launch your own webinar strategy to gain exposure and grow your business. It can also help validate any internal doubt you may have about launching a webinar program of your own.

 

Pick the Right Metrics and KPIs to Measure the Success of Your Webinar Program

In an ideal world, as marketers, after we host a Webinar, we’d be instantly inundated with a spike in conversion rates and new leads. It would be clear that our efforts had paid off and we would immediately begin planning our next Webinar to repeat the results. But in the real world, our databases and attributions are never as clean as we’d like them to be.

How do we know if a Webinar campaign is successful? How do we know if a Webinar strategy is something we should continue to invest in? At AnyMeeting, we believe the key to hosting a successful Webinar and improve your strategy is only as good as your metrics and Key Performance Indicators (KPIs).

We know there are many blogs and articles out there that discuss Webinar KPIs, so let’s break these KPIs into four categories; Conversion Goals, Engagement, Acceleration and Impact. You may not need to track every statistic or may track a few that aren’t listed below, but choosing the right measures will go a long way into securing the health and growth of your business.

Conversion Goals

Conversion Goals are very straightforward. Ultimately, you will want your Webinar registrants and attendees to perform an action, whether that is signing up for your product (or service), upgrading to a more robust plan or using a specific feature (or service).

Signs Ups / Upgrades

The most common metric measured is the number of sign ups you received for your product, if you are using Webinars as a lead generation tool. It’s important to be able to attribute these conversions to your Webinar. A few options include, providing a promo code through your Webinar, tagging all Webinar registrants in your CRM, or dive into the nitty gritty of first- and last- touch attributions.

Feature Usage

Do you have customers that do not utilize the full capabilities of your product? If so, you may do a Webinar to encourage usages of specific features or services. You may have found that some feature usage leads to a higher Lifetime Value of your customers, so it’s imperative that your customers are aware of everything you have to offer.

When Feature Usage is your goal, isolate attendees of your webinar by tagging them in your CRM or Analytics Tool to analyze their behavior. Then check if there was a spike in usage over 30, 60, and/or 90 days.

Number of Leads

There are numerous ways to categorize your leads. You may be interested in net new names to your database or subscribers to an opt-in list or be more concerned with qualified leads for your marketing or sales teams. Regardless, this is a number you will want to track in both its raw numerical value and in its percent change Webinar-to-Webinar. If you are finding that you are receiving less leads with each new Webinar you may need to improve your Webinars content or adjust your marketing outreach.

Engagement

Registered vs Attended

How many people who registered for your Webinar actually attendee? It may surprise you, but this number is not as critical as you think. However, if your attendance rate is low you will want to make sure you have a strong post-webinar plan. This may include emailing a recording of your Webinar to all of the registrants and making sure that information is available through your blog and other sources. You will also want to make sure that those who registered, but did not attendee, still have an opportunity to interact with you and ask questions.

Without measuring this KPI, you may either be putting too much or too little effort into your Webinar follow-up.

Questions Asked

There is no better indicator that you are providing value to your attendees than lots of questions. This shows that your attendees have learned something new and found your Webinar engaging enough to want to dive deeper and achieve a higher level of clarity.

Pro Tip: If you do not receive questions, have a co-presenter with some prepared questions get the ball rolling. No one likes to be the first person to speak up! You can also use this allotted time to ask additional polling questions of your audience instead of letting the time go to waste and awkwardly ending your Webinar 10 minutes early. Remember, if recording your Webinar to play again at a later date, you will want to make sure you have a smooth ending.

Support/Sales Requests

Though you may not be able to get exact attribution, having an open dialogue with your sales and support teams to see if there is an uptick in tickets or inquiries after you have conducted a webinar. Make sure your internal teams are gathering information from these request to understand what motivated them to reach out.

Acceleration

Length of Sales-Cycle

Forgive the cliche, but time is money. Webinars are a great way to help shorten your sales cycle and to supercharge your customers’ knowledge of your product and it’s value prop. If it generally takes a customer 30 days to decide to purchase or upgrade to a paid service once they become a lead, hosting a webinar within the first 30 days may decrease the time it takes to convert.

Time-to-convert can often be overlooked in favor of new leads, but it can have a tremendous impact on your bottom line.

Pro Tip: Research what triggers your customers to convert and build a webinar around this topic. In AnyMeeting, you can pre-record this webinar to add it to an email drip or host in a monthly cadence so you can continually benefit without frequency becoming a major disturbance.

Cost Per Lead / Acquisition Cost

Along the same lines, is the Acquisition Cost of new customers or leads in your database. To know if you Webinar strategy is successful, it will benefit you to look into any connections between your Webinar costs and other marketing/sales tactics in terms of both raw number of leads/customers and time it takes to convert. If you can speed up your sales cycle, you can spend less money marketing towards your prospects.

Impact

Not all results from hosting a Webinar may be obvious or as tangible as a purchase or the number of people who register for your Webinar. There can also be an overall increase in your business being considered an authority in your field, increase of word of mouth recommendations and brand awareness. Choosing the right KPIs to correlate with this phenomenon is imperative when justifying your Webinar Program to a superior that may only been interested in hard data.

Views of Recordings/Associated Articles on your Website or Social Media

Because you can record your Webinar with AnyMeeting, Your Webinar becomes content that you can use over again or post through a variety of channels. Monitor the engagement of this derivative content, if you see an increase in views, likes and shares you may be building your business’s level of trust.

Registration Link Shares

If you are conducting Webinars regularly, you probably will not have a brand new list of people to share with every time. If your past attendees have enjoyed your Webinar and view you as a trusted authority they are more likely to share the link to your Webinar with a colleague or their professional networks.   

Content Planning

From an internal perspective, Webinars can be a great basis for planning content through the month, quarter or year. Webinars may take a bit more effort to produce than a post on Twitter, but they can fill your content pipeline for months. Look into internal metrics like the number of additional content pieces you were able to create, having publications posted on time, etc. While any conversions as a result may be difficult to tie directly back to your Webinar, it will be clear that your Webinar strategy is important to the overall growth of your business.

Those are just a few of the KPIs you can use to measure the success of your Webinar Program. It’s important to figure out which metrics are the most actionable for you and your team. Metrics shouldn’t be numbers that sit in a spreadsheet, but instead become the inspiration you need to iterate on your program to make them a greater success.

But none of these metrics mean anything if you aren’t hosting Webinars. That’s what we are here for.  Start your 14-day free AnyMeeting trial now to grow your business. AnyMeeting has pioneered small business Webinars by offering a completely free, full-featured, and easy-to-use webinar and web conferencing services tailored for small business users.