Webinars are appearing all over the Internet today, so it makes sense to drive higher quality leads into your purchase funnel with these virtual events. But the webinar and the concept of free training is not new. It has been around for decades.
Are webinars that effective? The answer is Yes. Even multi-billion dollar companies focus on providing free training webinars today.
According to digital marketing entrepreneur Neil Patel, free training webinars usually aim to attract more quality top-of-funnel leads. This makes perfect sense because new customers are not ready to spend money yet.
What’s even more eye-opening is that more than half of B2B (Business-To-Business) has moved to webinars. The Content Marketing Institute’s 2019 benchmarks survey shows 64% of B2B has moved to the webinar as their marketing tool and 32% of B2B will maintain webinars as their trusted marketing tool.
Why? The answer is simple. According to the top research team of Insidesales.com, 73% of leads come from webinars.
Three companies, Apple, Huawei, and Cisco, have launched free training webinars and are an example of how you can use the three pillars to drive quality leads into your purchase funnel.
But first, let me define webinars so that we have the same understanding about the different formats of webinars:
"A webinar is presenters giving talks online. The speech can either be live or pre-recorded. And it comes in different formats like presentation, speech, interviews, or discussion. Presenters can also interact with audiences either in real-time or delayed." - Forbes
During the launch of the iPhone 11, Apple spent more time presenting the camera feature. Apple pointed out they were dedicating 800 staff members just to improve the camera.
They were focusing on generating quality top-of-funnel leads. They also knew participants were interested in what the iPhone 11 camera does. In today’s market, customers want high-end cameras in smartphones, so Apple wanted to target participants who wanted to purchase high-end cameras. Apple also knew interested participants would interact with or listen to the webinar.
Huawei’s latest webinar talked about how their solution impacts industries like:
Intelligent campus (for example, malls, schools, airports and metro stations)
Artificial Intelligence (AI)
Their solutions are what businesses are expecting to hear from a webinar. These businesses want to be aware of how Huawei's solutions can fix their problems.
Huawei has generated quality top-of-funnel leads from these webinars because of the relevant content of their webinars.
Cisco provides lots of free training webinars meant to target quality B2B leads throughout the purchase funnel.
Their webinars address topics such as:
Preparation for today's security threats
Security enhancements that deliver best-in-class detection, response and remediation
Denying malware a place to hide
These topics generate top-of-funnel leads and address the problems B2B leads currently have. They also have webinars that generate middle and bottom-of-funnel leads for audiences who are more aware of Cisco's products and services:
Aironet 4800 Access Point
Cisco ISE: Wireless
Hands-On Cisco DNA Center Platform
These webinars show how the product works and the steps to set it up.
Now let’s deep dive into the 3 pillars that generate quality leads for your purchase funnel.
Free training webinars are like precision-focused snipers. Other mass marketing tactics like cold calling behave like a shotgun, randomly choosing leads and prospects.
Webinars are laser-focused when it comes to closing deals because they focus on a specific topic. They're designed to attract a specific crowd.
This is different from cold calling, when you are calling people who are not even interested in talking to you.
Webinars are able to act as a slippery slide by quickly moving participants from the top of the funnel to the bottom.
The webinar gathers names of participants who are interested in the talk. Most of the heavy lifting to get participants to listen to you has been done before the webinar has even started!
As a result, you have already got quality leads for your top-of-funnel.
Once the talk starts, you may focus on building their awareness of your company background. Then explain the problems they are facing and show them the solutions.
At the end of the talk, you can follow up with the participants. Follow-ups may include downloading the webinar materials or answering their questions.
At this point, you will already be seen as the industry thought leader. Since the trust has been established, you will already have your middle-of-funnel before you know it.
Finally, if the customer is interested in buying the product, then your customer has moved to bottom-of-funnel. You can send in the sales team to close the deal.
But if the customer is not ready to buy yet, you still have a quality lead. Keep the lead warm by sending more webinars. These webinars may include the success stories of your existing customers. You may also include product demonstrations.
Now, you see how the slide moves participants from the discovery stage to the buying stage!
When participants attend free training webinars, they are expecting to interact with an expert. During the interaction, gather all of their concerns and objections.
Now you may use this information to your advantage. You can send more webinars based on the topics that customers are interested in.
This method will create more quality leads for your future webinars. This information may even move your middle of funnel customers to bottom-of-funnel.
During the launch of Apple Arcade, Apple brought in partners such as Konami and Sega to their webinar.
By doing this, Apple leveraged its partners. Now fans of Konami and Sega will also attend Apple’s webinar.
The purpose of a free-training webinar accomplishes the following:
Explains problems and solutions
Attends to participants' concerns and objections
Prompts participants to buy
Your webinar can serve one or more of the above purposes and get you more quality leads in your purchase funnel.
Every webinar needs a landing page for its participants to register themselves.
This means if your landing page does not attract your audience, the webinar is a total failure before it even started!
What determines the success of your landing page:
Compelling title and description. When participants do a Google search, the search result will need to catch their attention within seconds.
Social proof. You need proof to reinforce your claims.
The speaker’s credibility. Participants only trust speakers with a transparent background.
Content which is benefit-driven. Providing actionable content will give instant gratification to participants.
Creation of urgency or scarcity. Participants wouldn’t want to miss a webinar they are interested in.
The guidelines above are just the basics of designing a successful landing page. If you would like some help on your purchase funnel, click here to consult with our landing page professionals.
Chow Chin Wah is a copywriter in copywriters.com. He only writes for what he believes in. Because the purpose of his writing is to make the world a better place. He strives every day to provide value to society. Chow has an IT background as a Network Engineer and has an interest in computers from an early age.Hire Chow