Audience fatigue and disinterest are a marketer’s worst enemies during a webinar, but there are ways to keep them engaged, argues Shootsta’s Christine Pang.
The COVID-19 pandemic has given rise to the use of virtual solutions, and among them are webinars. Invitations for dozens of webinars are already flooding our inboxes as marketers recognise their significance as an easy-access tool for data collection and lead generation. The result is a new phenomenon we’re all experiencing, ‘webinar fatigue’, a new phrase coined to describe the overall feeling of disinterest towards the over-saturation of webinar offerings.
We all know what a bad webinar looks like – it is no longer simply passive intake of information. But good webinars leave positive lasting impressions of the initiative as well as the brand. So what makes a good webinar? There are many ways marketers can engage audiences and. Rather, there has been an increasing initiative to encourage interactive, two-way consumer-initiated contributions.
We have experienced the frustrations of video-lag or grainy videos due to unstable internet connection at home or in the office, leading to a bad viewer experience. And when it happens, we can’t do anything to fix it right away as it is not within our control.
The solution: pre-produce your webinars. Pre-produced webinars do so much more than just enhance viewers’ experience. Marketers can re-take as many times as needed to correct out or edit their mistakes, and add in special content such as photos and graphic effects to amplify their key messages and make the presentation more interesting. Best of all, pre-produced webinars can be repurposed as many times as needed for future webinars or for participants to view at their own convenience.
Having the right video content facilitates more engaging customer service initiatives and enables companies to connect on a deeper level with their customers. Global insurance company AXA has invested in video content at scale, as part of their communications strategy. AXA partnered with Shootsta to produce content such as taking customers through the journey of using the portal and app, as well as taking them through FAQs – for instance, how to file claims in different video styles and
Best of both worlds: combining live and pre-produced webinars
Your webinar is not a presentation, it’s a dialogue. By making the most of webinar platforms, you can always control the narrative while making the session more lively. Live polls, Q&A sessions and Live Chat are great means to make your event more memorable and engaging.
Audiences are especially inclined to stop listening if the webinar host makes the mistake of ‘lecturing’ to them. Hence, if you do want to conduct your webinars live, they should include interactive elements to encourage your audience to stay engaged throughout the webinars.
It also helps to include pre-produced content in your live webinar, as they serve as a form of edutainment, and audiences will be able to grasp more through videos and visuals than just a host presenting a set of slides. It’s like watching a YouTube show, but for professionals and with real-time interaction.
In Shootsta, we utilise live-streaming and pre-produced content altogether. We launched The Shootsta Show this year, a non-webinar TV-like show where we cover a series of topics running from all you need to know about making your own professional video, to learning from thought leaders on the future of working. In each episode, we tend to start off the show live and end it with a live Q&A, everything else? It is mostly pre-recorded.
However, do keep in mind that many people who register for webinars have the intention to watch them on-demand at their own convenience. This means businesses should be prepared to deliver as much value in the recording as they would with any other resources. This gives businesses a higher chance to potentially have their registrants turning into a potential qualified lead.
Putting best practices to work
“Planning a webinar is no different from planning a physical event when it comes to planning, marketing, event design and execution. And as one would expect at a live event, the key to a successful webinar is audience engagement.” – Tay Ling, General Manager, TBA Hong Kong
At Shootsta, we have helped our clients to successfully communicate across regions through the power of video. With the death of classroom practices, viewing all the speakers in a tile format for an hour can be a drag. Thankfully, our clients have now found a new way of educating their stakeholders across regions while cutting corporate expenses.
If anything, remember these three takeaways when conducting a webinar:
- Leverage on your strategic partners to broaden your audience beyond your database.
- Don’t bore your viewers with a presentation that lasts for an hour. Instead, be creative and utilize video tools to communicate your key messages into a one-minute video. After all, we are known to have short attention spans – even more so when in a home environment.
- Engagement is key. Always try to fit in a short, casual conversation with your participants during your live webinars. This allows you to learn more about your participants – who could potentially be your clients – which tends to be easier for your sales team to start a conversation with them.
Even though it has steeped due to the pandemic, marketers are starting to see the benefits of webinars – which means virtual events are likely to stay around longer. So if you are planning to leverage on webinars, do them well.