Webinars are one of the most popular digital tools used to share knowledge with an online audience. They can be very useful in your marketing and sales strategies: here's how and why.

The Internet has really changed the way we do things. 

Do you ever think about it?

Everything is now just a click away. Sometimes it is so obvious that we don't even realize it!

From shopping, to food delivery, to payments--we don't even have to get up from the couch and can even use just the phone.

But that's not all: from home we can also attend events, take online courses, and you name it.

In fact, guess what is one of the things that has been most depopulated in the last period?

Yes, the very ones, the webinar!

They are now like parsley (i.e., everywhere): they are increasingly reducing and replacing the number of meetings face-to-face, due to their convenience and ease of use.

But what are they really about and how can you make the most of them to grow your business?

Let's see it now!

What is a webinar 

The word "webinar" is a neologism born from the union of two English terms: "web" and "seminar." It is basically an online, educational or informational (but also, as we will see in a moment, promotional) seminar that you can access from any device connected to the Internet.

It is a virtual event, which can be broadcast live or recorded; in the former case, it includes a communicative exchange between the speaker and participants. It allows sharing the pc screen, presenting slides, sending messages in a chat room, and so on.

It is an interactive, visually stimulating, engaging and data-rich experience.

Thus, the main feature of live webinars is interactivity: participants can ask questions and discuss in real time, all in the comfort of their own homes. In the case of a recording, on the other hand, the advantage is of course to have it available at any other time.

Whether free or paid, it is the fastest-growing tool in the field of online training, but not only; to date, it is used by many in digital marketing to achieve various business goals: communicating, training, selling and networking.

If leveraged in the right way, in fact, it is a powerful strategy that allows you to connect with your audience, offer valuable content and position yourself as an expert in your field. The webinar can function as lead magnet, boost your brand loyalty and generate profits; it can allow you to launch a product creatively or conduct paid online courses from the comfort of your studio.

All that is needed to accomplish this is a computer, a webcam or video camera, perhaps a good microphone, and nothing else. Likewise, those who participate need only a device that allows them to do so and an Internet connection.

Precisely because of this ease of access, it paradoxically manages to gather almost more people than a physical event: thus, alongside lower cost and organizational effort, it also allows more guests to gain access.

Why to use them

Well, now that we have clarified what this is all about, let's look at several reasons why webinars are such an effective communication tool worth considering:

#1 They are educational

Webinars are about sharing information. People interested in a particular topic can participate to learn something new; the ability to interact in real time through various tools with the speaker and the discussion with other participants as well creates a unique learning experience.

#2 They are. border-free

Webinars have no space-time boundaries. Anyone from anywhere in the world can take part: all you need is a PC, tablet or smartphone with an Internet connection and voila, you're in. No need to move, travel, organize. They make it possible to bring many people together virtually. Not only that: in case delayed recording is also made available, so they can watch (or rewatch) at a later time.

webinar

#3 They are easy and convenient

For both those who make them and those who attend, they require minimal organizational effort and low costs. There is no need to secure a venue, plan, prepare an event, and invite participants to physically reach it. Moreover, any electronic device is all that is needed to access it. This "ease of connectivity" makes participating in webinars from anywhere at any time a stress-free experience.

#4 They are engaging

Unlike a classic video on, for example, YouTube, the advantage of the live webinar is precisely the opportunity it gives people to interact, both with the speaker and with everyone else. This increases engagement and connection with the target audience, who are not just mere spectators, but proactive participants.

#5 They are creative

Webinars also allow you to be more creative in the way you present. Being a digital medium, you have a range of options on how you present it: live streaming, pre-recorded, whiteboard, slides, etc.

How to leverage them in your business

Okay, all very interesting, right?

But you may be wondering, though: how can I use concretely Webinars in my business? Why should I need them?

I'll explain it right away.

From the point of view of connecting with people, webinars shorten the distance with your audience: it may seem paradoxical, because they actually replace a face-to-face meeting. But think about it: nowadays anyone who wants to promote themselves online does so very often through written content, addressing many people indiscriminately, for example on social media or via e-mail. The so-called relationship one-to-many. On the other side of the screen, people therefore always relate to a digital version of yourself that is extremely intangible and distant.

Even in the case where you post videos, perhaps on your YouTube channel, it is still a one-way communication: those who watch and listen to you do not have the opportunity to reply or tell you theirs.

Instead, the moment people can interact live with you and ask you questions, they realize that you are a live person, with a certain way of speaking and gesturing, who is offering and sharing his knowledge and experiences. They can counter, expose themselves, ask for your opinion on what they are interested in.

Webinars make you an expert, a trusted and unique source of information in your industry. They allow you to share your expertise with your target market. You can personally provide solutions to problems and clarify doubts about your product.

This will only increase the perception of your authority, improve the positioning of your brand and ultimately gain you more trust from your current and potential customers.

The important thing, of course, is that you provide quality content, which give value directly to a desired audience.

From a more "practical" point of view, here is how you can use them:

  • As a tool for promotion and sales: for example, to launch a new product or publicize a new service that you will make available to your customers;
  • As a lead generation tool: one of the most common uses is to offer a free pre-recorded webinar on a specific topic, whereby all that is required of attendees is to register with their e-mail address; this is a classic strategy for acquiring new contacts to add to one's list and then to leverage for other goals (i.e., converting people into buyers);
  • To do interactive interviews: you can virtually invite a guest to take part and perhaps offer a live question-and-answer session from even a selected audience-an exclusive opportunity that you can reserve for certain types of customers;
  • To train your team remotely: whether live or recorded, you can show your employees how the latest adopted software works, what new operating procedures have been introduced, or update them on the latest industry news;

Online webinars thus enable you to build authority, credibility, and become Thought Leader in your industry-that's why they should be a crucial part of your strategy.

Conclusions

So what do you think?

If you had never considered offering webinars to your audience, I hope this article has made you want to try it.

Regardless of the type of business you do, whether offline or online, I am sure they will prove to be a most useful tool for connecting with your customers, establishing your competencies and achieving your sales and business goals.

If you are inexperienced, you are likely to feel a little self-conscious at first, but don't give up: as that saying goes, you only learn by doing. True, doing a webinar definitely takes requirements (time, organization, use of tools, strategy...), but these are super doable things that you can learn as you go. You'll quickly figure out what you need and what aspects of your presentation you can improve on.

What really matters, as always, is to offer something that makes a difference: always try to give all that value that your audience demands of you.

Photo by Samantha Borges on Unsplash