How to maximize webinar conversions

Part of our "how to maximize..." series, we're focusing on increasing conversions from your webinars, regardless of how many show up.

Webinars can be a powerful tool for marketers and business owners to build trust and generate revenue.

They also allow you to reach a large audience and provide valuable content in a convenient and engaging way for your viewers. But what if your webinars aren’t converting as well as you’d hoped? 

There are many variables that can affect whether your webinar registrants turn into customers. Like our other “how to maximize...” guides, here, we’re focusing on 7 ways you can convert more webinar registrants into customers, no matter how many show up.

7 Tips To Maximize Your Webinar Conversions

1. Optimize your registration process 

A registration form for Game Changers by sequel.io

An optimized registration process is one of the most important steps in ensuring lead conversion after a successful live event. You want to know you’re attracting the right registrants. Here are a few tips to help you optimize your registration process and increase conversions: 

  • Keep the registration form on your website. Don’t use third-party tools for this.
    Moving domains is confusing to your audience, and it may keep them from registering at all. If your webinar platform integrates with your CRM, you can use it to capture registrations. Otherwise, build your registration form in the tool you use to organize your contacts and leads so you can triage your registrants and target the right leads. 
  • If you use hubspot forms, you can automatically pre-populate the form fields with known leads information. Make it easier for known prospects to register. You can enhance it even more by adding a marketing intelligence platform to pre-populate the fields for unknown leads once they enter their email address. 
  • Make sure the registration form is short and easy to complete.
    The less information you require from registrants, the more likely they are to complete the form. A short registration form makes an integration with your CRM all the more important. 
  • Include a clear call to action on the registration page.
    Tell registrants exactly what you want them to do, such as "click here to register." 
  • Provide an incentive for registering early.
    Early bird discounts are a great way to increase registrations, but for attracting the right leads, make sure that early bird special will add value for your target audience. The right incentive will be valuable to your prospects while deterring less qualified registrants.
  • Follow up with registrants after they sign up.
    A personal follow-up email can confirm their spot in the live event and remind them of the date and time, but it can also serve to solidify their commitment to attend or download a recording. 

Following these tips can optimize your registration process to attract the right registrants and increase conversions down the road.

2. Maintain your leads' interest and excitement with an engaging welcome sequence

As soon as someone registers for your webinar, they should receive a confirmation email. This email should include the date, time, and topic of the event and a link to add the event to their calendar. You might also include a brief overview of what attendees can expect to learn, and what might be most interesting to them, based on your understanding of their segmentation.

A few days before the event, send a reminder email. This is an excellent opportunity to share additional information about the event, such as a list of speakers or a preview of the presentation. You might also want to include a promotional code for any products or services that will be mentioned during the presentation.

On the day of the event, send a final reminder email. It should include a link to participate and any other relevant instructions or reminders. Also, include a customer testimonial or success story related to the topic. 

Finally, just before the event starts, you'll receive a final notification with any last-minute announcements or changes. Thanking attendees in advance will make them feel appreciated. You can also use this message to preemptively answer a commonly-asked question at any webinar: “Will this be recorded?”

Following this welcome sequence ensures that your leads are prepared and excited, which in turn leads to higher conversions.

3. Start with a Strong Intro

The first few minutes of your live event will set the tone for the rest of the presentation, so it's important to make a good impression. You want to establish yourself as a calm, assertive driver of the conversation, setting expectations for everyone’s behavior on the stream. 

Your introduction is the first opportunity to capture your audience’s attention and get them interested in the rest of the webinar. Here are a few tips for crafting a strong intro:

Start by introducing yourself and your topic. Give an overview of what attendees can expect to learn, and set expectations for how they can interact with you and each other during the webinar. This will ensure everyone is on the same page and engaged.

Next, provide some context for your presentation. Why is this topic important? What are the benefits of learning about it?

Finally, give a preview of what you'll cover in the webinar's main body. This will help to pique attendees' interest and encourage them to stick around for the rest of the presentation. 

If you take no other tips from this piece, please, please make sure you take this one: jump in to your webinar at the start time. As the leader of the webinar, you are in charge of when the webinar begins, not your audience. Put these words to bed: “Just waiting for a few more people to join.” That’s what the recording is for.

With the right introduction, you can set the stage for driving engagement with your attendees and maximize lead conversions. The most engaged participants should also be your strongest leads. If you give them permission to interact with you and your content, the most qualified leads will raise their hands and tell you who they are. Then, using engagement and intent information from your webinar platform, you’ll know which attendees to follow up with after the event to boost your conversion rates.

4. Share the Visuals from Your Presentation

A graphic from a presentation from the Prequel by sequel.io
Don't miss screenshotting this outstanding graphic!

If you're looking to increase webinar sales conversions, one of the best things you can do is use visuals throughout your presentation and make them available to your attendees. It may seem unrelated, but sharing visual information is a great way to gather intent behavior from your audience. With the right intent behavior, you can target the right leads and increase conversion rates from your webinar. For example, you can share an infographic on the screen, and then promise, “you can download this infographic through the platform,” providing useful information to your audience and precious intent behavior data for you. 

If your webinar platform doesn’t enable file sharing, you can provide an external link to a file or prompt your audience to take a screen capture. If nothing else, you’ll be recapturing your audience’s attention by telling them, “come back! This is something valuable that you’ll want to pay attention to.” 

While we never recommend stalling the beginning of your webinar, it is perfectly acceptable to stop mid-presentation to say, “I’ll wait here so you can find the webinar tab. You’re going to want to take a screenshot of this.” It’s a great way to quietly nod to the distractions that threaten your attendees’ attention and bring them back in to the content you’re sharing.

Including visuals throughout your presentation helps keep viewers engaged and makes it more interesting to watch. People are far more likely to understand and remember information they see than information they only hear. But it also helps to recapture the attention of attendees who might be a great fit for your product or service but weren’t paying attention at the moment you were sharing what would draw them in. You know what points out a hot lead? Someone in the chat saying, “Could you go back a slide? I missed getting that screenshot.”

By incorporating images, charts, and other visuals into your presentation, you'll be better able to communicate your message and more likely to make a lasting impression on your audience. Additionally, visuals help break up the monotony of a traditional slide-based presentation. 

If you're getting bored with your own material, chances are your audience is feeling the same way. Adding in some visual interest can keep people's attention focused on your message. 

And finally, don't forget that people love free stuff! If you can offer attendees something tangible that they can take away from the event (e.g., a downloadable PDF), they'll be much more likely to convert into paying customers.

5. Engage Webinar Participants Early and Often

This point is so important that you may have noticed we mentioned some element of attendee engagement in every other tip we’ve shared so far. If you want to increase sales conversions, you need to pinpoint the right leads to follow up with, and to do that, you need to engage participants early and often so they can tell you who they are with their behavioral data.

Again, we recommend integrating your attendees’ behavioral information from your webinar platform into your CRM so you can automate notifications to your sales teams when someone is raising their hand as a hot lead. Don’t just tell your sales team that a lead engaged; tell them how they engaged so their follow-up is relevant to the lead’s interest.

The key to engaging participants is ensuring they are involved from the start. This means providing an outline of what will be covered in the event, setting expectations for how you want to interact with your attendees and ensuring there’s dialogue between the presenter and the audience. 

Invite your sales team to join the webinar so they can engage with their prospects during the webinar. Provide them with some seed questions to drive conversation in the chat. You could even invite someone to the stage to provide their insight on a given topic or share an example supporting your presentation.

It is also important to keep the presentation focused on the topic at hand. Straying from your topic most often signals poor preparation to your audience, even if you prepped really well. Once participants start to lose interest, it becomes very difficult to regain their attention.

Some other ways that you can engage your audience:

  • Ask your audience questions: in your presentation; through a poll; directly in the chat
  • Invite willing attendees to the stage to ask or answer a question

If you want to increase sales conversions, remember to keep your participants engaged from start to finish. By doing so, you will create a much more successful webinar overall.

6. Recap What Was Learned at the End

A good recap at the end of your presentation highlights key takeaways that participants should remember, can address participants' questions during the presentation, and highlight which additional resources you should share for further learning.

This is another great opportunity to let your attendees show their intent. Ask which slides your audience would like to see again, or what surprised them to learn during the session.

This invites participants to teach each other the key takeaways from the event, makes it more likely that they'll take action on what they've learned, and tells you which leads who don’t take immediate action are the most likely to convert with a bit of 1:1 interaction from your sales team. 

A bonus feature of asking your attendees to recap the session for you: it tells you how effective your presentation was. Pay attention to what’s standing out most to your audience to refine or adjust your messaging until your presentation is perfect.

7. Create an Irresistible Offer to Your Participants

Finally, if you’re using your webinar to sell, you want to provide an irresistible offer to your participants to increase your sales and create a lasting relationship with your audience.

Make sure the offer you’re making to your participants is rewarding the right behavior. Discounts on products may serve to attract a price-sensitive customer rather than a value-driven one. Add value to your participants by offering additional services at a lower price point, bundling your services with a guests’ product, or offering an extended trial period. 

To ensure you’re driving value with your offer, think about how it will help your participants achieve their goals. Be sure to include these details in your pitch. 

Finally, ensure that your offer is easy to understand and follow through with. No one wants to be left feeling confused or frustrated after making a purchase.

By following these tips, you can maximize webinar conversions with an offer that's too good for your participants to resist!

8. Follow up with your leads post-webinar

It's important to follow up with your leads after a webinar. Doing so can increase your sales conversions and build relationships with potential customers. 

There are a few key things to keep in mind when following up with leads post-webinar.

  • First, make sure to send a personalized message. A generic message will come across as impersonal and may not get your lead's attention.
  • Secondly, the email should either thank them for attending or acknowledge they were not able to attend and include a link to the recording in either case. 
  • Then, explain how they can learn more if they want to. Direct them to useful information on your website or a contact form where they can connect with your sales team.
  • Finally, include the irresistible offer you made during the presentation with clear instructions on how to get it.

We recommend following up with your leads within five business days after the event to solidify your relationship and get them to purchase. And if they don’t, move them into your general list and continue nurturing the relationship.

Another way to follow up is to individually reach out to highly engaged attendees. This could be done via phone or email. You can look through the attendees' list and see who interacted the most during the presentation

Your attendees with the highest in-session interactions are more likely to be interested in your product and are more likely to convert into paying customers or point you towards new sales opportunities. Following these simple tips ensures that you're making the most of your webinar leads.

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