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Are webinars still relevant? Do they actually work in today’s environment? What’s the balance between teaching without over delivering, while also selling without pitching your face off? Can you host webinars without the schmucky tactics?
If you’re curious about the answers to these questions (and you have plans to host webinars within the next year), I created a 3 part series to teach you how to create a webinar that feels good, provides value to your audience without compromising sales. I’ll also share scripting secrets you can use for crafting authentic and effective webinars.
In the first episode, you’ll learn:
- the real definition of a webinar
- why ‘swipe, copy and paste’ culture is hurting your brand
- 4 distinct shits to start making now to make your webinars less fluffy and more effective
Episode Show Notes:
What actually is a webinar?
A webinar is an online training designed to address your ideal customer’s most pressing problem, help them understand why the problem persists (ie., why it happens, why what they’ve tried isn’t working) and then show them what they need to do to achieve their desired outcome.
Why we need to move away from ‘swipe, copy and paste culture’
❌ It’s no longer about plugging your content into templated slide decks and fill in the blank scripts (if you want sales AND your audience to feel good about it).
✅ Those who flourish on these virtual stages are the ones who UNDERSTAND HOW to connect, serve and lead their audience to the next step.
If I give you all of the ingredients for exactly how to sell on a webinar or exactly how to speak on stages, what’s going to happen is you’ll try to take exactly what I did and swap pieces for your content, but it just would not work in the same way.
Filling in the blanks is easy (and let’s be real, we all want EASY), but getting the right message to resonate requires next level understanding.
You must learn HOW to communicate to your audience in a way that connects to them exactly where they are and persuades them to take action.
Value isn’t about telling your audience what to do, but rather showing them what’s possible and a clear path on how to achieve it.
4 Shifts If You Plan on Hosting Webinars Next Year
1. Recognize that your turn offs are NOT those of your audience.
If you’ve been feeling turned off by certain marketing tactics (inside or outside webinars), and find yourself feeling a little “over” marketing, this might not be the same for your audience.
There’s a saying, “we’re drawn to what we focus on” and it’s actually rooted in the part of the brain known as the Reticular Activating System (RAS)
This part of the brain helps us filter the information we take in every single second, prioritizing what it thinks is important or relevant to us.
If we have narrowed in on our own annoyances or preferences around marketing, our RAS will serve up more information to back that up.
How does this apply to webinars?
Let’s say you don’t like it when someone uses a Fast Action Bonus on a webinar, or tells you to “turn off all distractions”.
Note your own “turn offs” as a guide to question how you want to show up, but don’t be so fast to dismiss tactics or annoyances thinking that your audience thinks and feels the same as you.
Your audience is not you and you must remember that YOU are much further along in your journey.
As you approach your webinar, be sure that you are really considering the perspective of your audience and not just your own preferences.
2. Stop shunning or shaming your audience for NOT showing up live.
Marketing stats show that conversion rates with a live audience is typically higher than those who watch the replay (or don’t watch it at all). That’s the motivation behind a push to get people to attend webinars live.
And even if you do a big push, the average live show up rate is about 25%, with high conversion rates at 35-45%.
So while you can (and I encourage you to) do everything possible to get more people to show up live, I believe that those who ignore the rest will struggle.
TIP: don’t crap on the experience for the people who don’t show up live (which will be the majority).
It’s time to start thinking how you can also create an exceptional experience for people who don’t show up live.
Start asking yourself: how can I improve the non-live experience?
Here’s a few ideas:
- Cut your replay recording down so there isn’t 10-15 minutes of dead air at the beginning.
- Address those who are watching the recording later as you speak. Like you would do on a live stream for those watching the replay.
- Be sure your follow up sequence is strong, and encourage them to watch the training replay
- Turn on the control buttons and let people watch at a faster pace / or skip pieces of content (GASP).
These are things you can TEST with your audience to see what works. Sure, some of these ideas (especially that last one) could mean that someone doesn’t hear your whole pitch. But do you want to be held captive to someone’s training? Or do YOU want to be in control of how you consume content?
You don’t want them to feel any less seen and connected to your content just because they weren’t there live. This is an area I’m seeing many marketers play with and I’m excited to see where this goes in 2022.
3. Focus on context not fluff.
We’ve been to webinars where it feels like there is a lot of fluff. That’s why I want you to ask yourself this question: What is the context that your audience needs to know? What do they need to truly believe in order to get results and be open to your solution?
How to make your webinar more effective not fluffy
Before you launch your first webinar, here are a few things that you must keep in mind:
- Identify a specific pressing problem from your audience
- Know why is this problem persisting
- Give context to provoke your audience thinking
- Provide examples and tied them to your audience pain points and solution that they desire
- Show them the path of how to actually achieve the results that they want
In my experience, many entrepreneurs are sick of the fluff on webinars. So they skip straight to giving away the meaty tips, but the challenge is that their audience doesn’t have context.
Their problem is often the tip of the iceberg.
Help them understand the context of their problem and WHY what they’ve tried isn’t working.
4. Appreciate, respect and value your audience.
Do you ever feel burned out because you’ve been stuck on the hamster wheel of content creation? You’re putting out all this free stuff and it’s not paying off? Notice if you feel a tinge of resentment when people continue to show up and learn from you for “free”.
Shift to appreciating and valuing your audience.
Remember that your audience doesn’t owe you anything. They’re giving you their time and attention. That is one of the most valuable things and whether or not you can help them completely solve their problem or transform their lives, that’s not up to you to decide. They get to decide how deep and far they go with your content.
Denise Duffield Thomas, author of Chillpreneur: The New Rules for Creating Success, Freedom, and Abundance on Your Terms, shares to keep perspective by remembering the 1% rule.
About 1% of your audience will buy from you.
You can choose so see this as a depression number, or an empowering one. It frees you from feeling like a failure if you “only convert” 2-3% (which is industry standard).
You have a platform to share your message and you have every right to get paid. But also remember that to reach that person that your offer can best benefit, you must be willing to share and keep showing up because the majority will NOT be a buyer.
If you’re not okay with that, tough love here, I think you’re in the wrong business.
In your webinar (and in all of your marketing) your job is to keep reminding them you’re their partner. You’re here for the long game. You’re not just here to make a sale, but you really want to help them in their journey.
Listen to the full episode where I go into these topics deeper (audio embedded above. And check out the other 2 parts of this Webinar Selling Series: