A webinar is an online event that is broadcasted to a select group of individuals through computers via the Internet. It is a way by which organizations project their message to a large audience, without asking them to spend time or money to travel to a particular location in order to get this information. Conducting a webinar is a very cost-efficient initiative to an organization as opposed to conducting a traditional seminar.
In short, a webinar is a seminar conducted online. The speaker sits in a location with a PowerPoint presentation and various multimedia components, which is broadcast through a web-conferencing tool and people from different locations, log in to join the webinar. The speaker can present the webinar directly, or use a pre-recorded presentation and make his appearance only during the Q&A session. The webinar attendees can ask questions pertaining to their real-time experiences during the webinar either through phone or through the messaging option that is integrated in the web-conferencing tool.
However, a webinar is NOT a sales presentation; it is a method of subtly establishing the company as a thought leader and improving the brand image through education and advice to prospective and existing customers. Successful webinar programs will also result in enormous grassroot level demand generation and tremendous sales during the short term as well as in the medium term.
The main objectives of developing a webinar
Webinars play an important role, especially in organizations that are striving to build stronger customer relationships or trying to prepare their staff for success on the job while adding to customer services. Webinars greatly help in building grassroot level demand for products and services through education.
Conducting trainings or meetings, calling employees, customers and prospects in person is an expensive initiative when compared to conducting them online. While cost cutting is an important purpose of online training, the main objectives of developing webinars are given below.
1. To educate customers and prospects: Webinars are a good source to stay in touch with clients as well as attract new prospects. Organizations are able to procure business only when they get in touch with prospects and clients and create awareness in them about the organizations’ products and services. Through webinars, organizations can educate their customers and prospects on the latest trends in the industry, on the usage of certain products and introduce them to new products. However, it is important that the webinars focus on educating the customers rather than promoting or selling the products and services of the organization.
2. To provide thought leadership: Standing out against competition in an over-saturated market is crucial for any organization’s continued and successful survival. By conducting webinars on topics that are relevant to the industry, organizations can establish themselves as thought leaders and carve an image as experts in their field. This gives them credibility as customers and prospects look up to them for solving industry-related issues.
3. To generate leads and procure continuous business: Webinars are an excellent tool for lead generation procuring more business from existing clients. Information gathered from filled-in registration forms is a good source to identify the topics their customers and prospects are interested in, and provide them with relevant details. In this way, organizations can convert leads to clients and procure more business.
In my next blog, I will share how to develop a webinar.