The Internet has given B2B marketers access to millions of potential buyers 24/7. It has also inundated buyers with a massive amount of information choices. The moral of the story is B2B marketers HAVE to be ready to compete. Webinars – online conferences in which participants can present, collaborate and share information – are essential tools to achieve this objective.
The Webinar is a fantastic vehicle for the following:
2. Thought leadership
3. Quantifiable lead generation
4. Lead nurturing
But, it’s not an “if you build it, they will come” product. Like anything on the Internet, Webinars have some basic fundamentals that I believe you need to focus on (of course, neatly organized in the “ABC” format). Before I go any further, I want to point to a Webinar form August 18 from Citrix. Click here to see the full landing page, a snapshot of which is below. Citrix’s Webinars are a model for vendors leveraging the online conferencing tool in their lead-generation process. Kudos to them and thanks for the inspiration.
A: Always be helping. Remember today’s buyer has the power. If they can participate in a forum that teaches them about a tool or product that could improve their day-to-day job responsibilities, they will choose that versus a vendor pitch. When you are creating a Webinar, take a educational perspective in every sense of the word. Let’s analyze the Citrix Webinar for some key points:
1. Use a third-party thought leader as your main speaker, NOT your product marketing manager. Look at the main publicized speaker for this Webinar: he is an expert on presentations, NOT on Citrix. I was interested in hearing what he had to say. Leveraging a presenter like him tells me, the buyer, that I am not going to be sold – I am going to learn something of value.
2. Be sure your topic is educational, while still being compelling. The topic and landing page does not sell Citrix at all. It is focused on the value of the speaker and the topic which, by the way, looks like something that ANYONE who does presentations would be foolish not to watch.
B: Be provocative but not offensive. This Webinar has one of the best subject-line topics I have seen in the last few years. When I saw that topic, I said, “Citrix is going to kill it on this Webinar.” Need I say more:
1. People love lists; see my previous George Carlin post as an example. Lists work for a couple reasons: they give the prospective viewer the idea that the content will be easy to consume and to-the-point. As well, lists give an impression of authoritativeness, since they usually describe the best or worst examples in a given field.
2. Provocative topics work. The “lousy pitch” or “worst” wording will capture four times as many people versus a title with a positive spin. Brilliance, I mean it.
C: Content please, the remarkable kind. There are a couple essentials for remarkable content:
1. Make it valuable and memorable. Content is king on the Internet and in the case of this Webinar, even the landing page is remarkable. People will remember it. Create content which the buyers will thank you for and more importantly, REMEMBER you for.
2. Make it simple and efficient. There were six bad habits in the Webinar. This is a fail-proof equation: Simple presentation + easy to understand = easy to consume.
Again, thanks to Citrix for the inspiration. We can all learn something from each other.