How to get started with running a marketing webinar

…..And why you cannot afford not to be running one!

This week I am please to include a guest blog by Virginie Chasseriau from A Cup of Learning.

Everyone loves webinars! They are time-saving, cost-effective and easy to connect to! All you need is an Internet connection and that’s it.

Nowadays, 2,000 million people a month are connected to Facebook, 328 million a month to Twitter, 700 million a month to Instagram and 467 million users on LinkedIn (source: © Statista 2017). How many are your prospects? 20%? 10 %? Even 1%?

# your prospects Facebook Twitter Instagram LinkedIn
20% 400,000,000 65,600,000 140,000,000 93,400,000
10% 200,000,000 32,800,000 70,000,000 46,700,000
1% 20,000,000 3,280,000 7,000,000 4,670,000

Social media have removed all barriers and it’s never been so easy to connect. Today, the power lies with technology. How well do you know it? How well do you use it? Website, emails, marketing campaign are powerful tools to raise awareness about your product or service. But how do you engage the discussion with your prospects? To stand out from the crowd, to be noticed among such a busy environment, a marketing webinar is the mean to use.

A webinar is a seminar over the web. With a webinar, you engage in a conversation with prospects. You give them valuable information and they can react, ask questions and get an answer. A webinar is a cost-effective and time saving mean to engage a conversation with prospects in order to convert them as customers.

Is a webinar for you?

Yes, if:

  • You sell a product or a service
  • You are passionate about your business and you are an inexhaustible source of information
  • You want to grow your business without compromising time with friends and family

No, if:

  • You are too specialized and only targeting a “niche” community (but is it really a narrow local niche?…)
  • You target an older generation not used to technology

Running a marketing webinar is not costly (only a monthly fee for the webinar platform is required) and therefore your product does not have to be expensive to be worth a webinar. With the potential to target thousands of people, there is a multiplicative factor to generate a big return on investment. And it is also the opportunity to develop subscriptions and loyalty programs. As you engage the conversation with your customers, you want to create that special relationship with them.

What do you need to get started?

A little bit of gut and:

  1. An appealing landing page with an easy registration process. 60% of people interested in a webinar give up on the registration page as it is too complicated or too long.
  2. A structured engaging presentation to deliver a crystal-clear message and, at the same time, engage a conversation with participants. Engaging means that participants are physically doing something to eradicate all distractions around them. Distractions that could stop them from listening to you.
  3. A webinar platform: there are several platforms and you should choose yours based on your budget and expectations. And, regardless of your choice, it is important to get familiar with your platform before delivering a live webinar. Technology is not always our best friend so make sure you know:
    1. How to get your microphone on
    2. How to mute the audience
    3. How to use tools such as chat area, video, polls, sharing screen…

If technology is not your thing, or if you do not have time, it may be a clever idea to work with a webinar producer. A webinar producer removes all the hassle before, during and after the webinar, so that you can only focus on what you do best: talking about your product or service, talking about your passion.

Furthermore, a webinar producer will:

  • set-up the platform to fit your needs,
  • introduce the webinar and polls,
  • manage any technical issues (such as if participants cannot hear you, cannot log-in) or manage questions that could be answered without asking the presenter (e.g. When will the recording be made available?),
  • keep participants active.

A webinar will save you time in marketing… really?

Even if webinar platforms are more and more powerful with a broad range of possibilities, there are still a lot of human participation needed to prepare a webinar. You’ll need time to structure your message and build a presentation, to design a landing page, to learn how to use the webinar platform and to rehearse.

But, once this is done, you can deliver your webinar many times over. Since webinars can be recorded, they can be easily integrated to your marketing strategy. And you can still reach people who have registered but haven’t turned up.

Once your webinar is ready, there will be no more preparation, saving you time to spend for what really matters to you: children, husband, spouse, family, friends, your hobby… Everything is allowed!

 

Author: Virginie Chasseriau from A Cup of Learning.

Virginie is an experimented trainer who has worked for 15 years in a Corporate environment. She has extensive experience in delivering webinars and implementing blended learning strategies. With her company, A Cup of Learning, Virginie supports self-employed and small businesses to develop and run engaging marketing webinars that convert.

Like her Facebook page to be kept posted with webinars and training programs.

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Email – the dreaded ‘delivery status notification (failure)

This week I am welcoming my first guest blogger – Holly Thorne from Virtual Angels

UNDELIVERABLE: your email

Imagine: you’ve spent ages composing an email. Pressed send and then… in a matter of seconds, back comes the dreaded ‘delivery status notification (failure)’.  That’s not so bad if it’s just one email, but what if you’ve just sent your latest email campaign and it’s not just one bounce but a large percentage of your campaign list.  You might be losing out on valuable customers.

Contact details can be wrong for many reasons; the details were recorded incorrectly; the person has moved roles or companies; or maybe they’ve changed their name.  These are just some of the reasons but what can you do to keep information up to date?

Set up a Database

Create a database or consider signing up to a CRM system that’s suitable for your business.  If your contact details are all in one place, you’ll know where to find them. Many CRM systems can now integrate with your emails or other marketing tools to make updating contact information even simpler.  With a contact database you can make notes or create tags so that you can record information such as when you last contacted someone, their preferred name or where you met them.

When choosing a system, consider if you require restricted access (e.g. logins with password access), multiple user logins or customisable fields. If using an online CRM system, check where your data will be stored and how it will be kept safe.

Your contact database should be your ‘single source of truth’ when it comes to contact information and if you have other team members, you need to ensure they know this too. That way, if you’re off sick or a member of staff leaves, the rest of your team can still find relevant information – so contacts are still contactable.

Back it up!

If you’re keeping an electronic database, back it up at least once per week. Ensure the backup is secure and cannot be accessed by people who should not have access to it.

Maintain and Update

It’s really important that you regularly review and update your contact database, also known as ‘data cleaning’. The best trick for this is little and often – spot check contact records and as soon as you become aware of any changes, update them.

If someone’s email bounces, make a note of it the first time. If it bounces again, try contacting them in a different way to see if they are still using that email, or if they have an alternative one they would like you to use.

Ultimately, you can have the fanciest CRM system in the world, but it you don’t have good quality data you may as well have a carrier bag messily stuffed full of business cards!

Finally – The Data Protection Act 1998 outlines your legal obligations when you hold information. This includes keeping personal data accurate and up to date. If you’re unsure of your obligations, check out the ICO website for more information.

If you would like to learn more about setting up a CRM system, Holly would be happy to chat with you.  Her email is holly@virtualangels.co.uk.

So what shall I post today?

How long have you been sitting looking at your computer screen, totally lacking any inspiration?

Constantly thinking of new content to post onto your social media platforms can be daunting if you are not great at planning ahead.  You want to keep your followers engaged whether on your Facebook page, Twitter, LinkedIn or in fact any social media.

Don’t worry help is at hand. Here are six ideas to get you kick started.

  1. Images – people love visual content. This is a great way to showcase your products or services. Photographs will increase visibility and help potential customers get more familiar with what you offer. Think – is there a picture you can take today and post?

Not everything has to be specifically related to your company’s product or services.  Do a google search for something inspirational that would be relevant to your audience.  There are some great free photo editing websites that allow you to overlay text on an image – perhaps add a quote or thought for the day.  I really like PicMonkey and Canva

  1. Guest posts – how about a collaboration? You can swap posting with people for a day so that you have the opportunity to get in front of a different audience.  Think about some people you could approach who would complement your business.
  1. Questions – do you ever ask a question or ask for feedback? It is a great way to get audience engagement and increase your reach.  Recently I saw a friend posting about the launch of their new website and asking for feedback. She was inundated with comments, likes and the post was shared several times.  Is there something you could ask?
  1. Links to your blog – if you invest time in writing a blog then you want to get the maximum mileage out of your content. Look back and see which blogs are still relevant and share again.  Have you posted them onto LinkedIn as an article? This has the benefit of then appearing on your profile.
  1. Events – are you hosting an event? Have you set up an event page on Facebook? This automatically generates a post and you can share the link on other platforms.  If you are attending an event give it some visibility by sharing the event information, using the event hash tag etc.
  1. Don’t forget to regularly check out your incoming social media updates. Retweeting on twitter is a quick way of posting.  Can you add a comment or reply?  Sharing a post on Facebook is easy and shows you appreciate what people are posting.  You are more likely to then have your posts shared too!  Take a look at your page feed with posts from pages you have liked. Is there something you could share right now? Remember it is nice to like content too and add a comment!

Hopefully this had given you some fresh ideas for posting on social media.  Obviously it is not an exhausted list.  Check out my previous blog  https://littleacornmarketing.wordpress.com/2015/06/11/help-i-dont-know-what-social-media-content-to-post/ for some more ideas. Do you have any other suggestions for things that have worked really well for you?

To discuss how to generate a social media content calendar please get in touch on 07988 676219 or karen@littleacornmarketing.co.uk

Back to basics – Communication

Get back to basics and communicate!

Get back to basics and communicate!

Over the years it has been fascinating to see how communications have changed and how we use language to communicate. I can remember spending many hours getting very frustrated with mail merge, printing off letters by the hundred and stuffing envelopes ready for post office. Now using systems such as Mailchimp we can send out correspondence to hundreds of contacts at the click of a button.

Even how we communicate with friends and family has changed. Once upon a time we would set aside time to write to a friend, probably having spent a lot of time at some point choosing just the right paper and envelopes. Now we send short text messages in ‘text’ speak, or quickly comment on or like a Facebook post. We even send birthday and Christmas cards electronically.

So have we evolved?  Sometimes I think we have abandoned traditional communication methods not necessarily for the best

That is why I am pleased to see that week commencing 21-27th Sept is National Thinking of You Week. The objective is to encourage people to ‘think’ of people they haven’t been in contact with and reach out to them. Do you remember the last time you sent a handwritten card or letter?  How do you feel when one arrives at home addressed to you? I bet you smile and feel just a little bit excited.

This doesn’t just have to be about friends and family. Think about your business – are there people on your database you have not interacted with for ages? Why not use this special week to focus a handful of contacts and connect back with them. Not by bulk email. Be daring – pick up the phone and talk! You really might be surprised at the results.