If you read the first half of this article, 8 Mistakes You’re Making On Your Webinars — And How You Can Solve Them, you’ll know that the difference between a great webinar and a snoozefest can be a few simple errors, such as scheduling your webinar at a bad time or bringing in a not-so-engaging guest speaker.
But, we’re here to help you solve all your accidental errors and elevate your webinar to greatness. Read on to discover 7 MORE mistakes you’re most likely making in your webinars and the solution to each one.
Mistake Number 1: You’re Selling, Not Helping
Unless your webinar attendees are among the few people who love staying up at night for late night infomercials (yes, they do exist), do not try to sell them anything. Too often, marketing webinar hosts are so eager to get leads and make sales that they instantly jump right into pitch mode and try to hard sell their attendees on their fabulous “must-have” product.
This is a surefire way to ensure no one will come back or buy your product.
The solution: Share quality information first. Webinars are often free, and people sign up to learn some kind of insider secret or information from an expert. And you should do just that. The majority of your webinar should be aimed at building trust and teaching something valuable. Then, you can position your product as part of the solution that your webinar is trying to solve (this helps people, rather than sells them).
For example, if you sell fitness guides, you might host a “30 reasons why you’re not losing weight” webinar. Reasons 1-29 should all be incredibly useful and valid tips. Number 30 can be, “You’re not pushing your body enough because you’re using the wrong exercise combinations. XYZ fitness guides are designed by professional trainers to solve this problem…” By the time you got to number 30, you’ve built trust and provided information that isn’t just a hard sell, making your pitch feel more useful than money-grabbing.
Also, do not (I repeat, do not) bait and switch your attendees by providing very short and surface-level information before jumping straight into an in-depth pitch.
Mistake Number 2: Your Audio/Video Is Terrible
It doesn’t matter how amazing your content is — you could be revealing indisputable evidence that aliens really do exist — and if your audio or video is grainy and unclear, it won’t matter. If people can’t hear you or see you, they won’t be able to follow along and they’ll probably just drop off. They have better things to do than hear you crackle in and out and strain to hear you over the hummm of the lawnmower outside.
The solution: Get a quality microphone and webcam (you can find our favorites here). Also, make sure to turn off all noisy devices, such as the washing machine, air conditioner, fan, etc. NEVER use a speakerphone on a device, such as your cellphone, for your audio. And, speaking of your cellphone, make sure it is on silent (or better yet, in another room entirely) BEFORE you go live.
Mistake Number 3: You’re Not Engaging Your Audience
Want to know a surefire way to make your webinar boring? Treating it like an on-demand video and just lecturing the whole time without providing any way for your audience to interact. Part of what makes a webinar so enticing to viewers is the opportunity to chat with the speaker/other attendees and interact throughout. It creates the sort of relationship that you just can’t achieve on any other medium (even Facebook Live has interaction limitations that webinars don’t).
The solution: Utilize engagement tools on your webinar platform. WebinarJam allows hosts to insert polls, chat with users over an interactive live chat and bring attendees onto the virtual stage via attendee spotlight. You can even create a form of social proof interaction between attendees by highlighting when someone buys one of the products you’re selling, directly within the webinar. Aim to have some sort of interaction every 10 or so minutes and a Q&A session at the end.
Mistake Number 4: Your slides are a text-heavy ugly mess
Have you ever been to a presentation where the slides were covered with a mass of text that made you glaze over halfway through reading? Or how about a presentation where the speaker spoke directly off the slides? Pretty cringe-worthy, huh? Yet, you’d be shocked to learn just how many people do exactly that on their webinars.
The solution: Your slides should be complementary to your presentation, not a transcript. If you must have bullets, make them a brief summary of your points, but they should never be a teleprompter. In fact, Steve Jobs was famous for his brief slides, using images instead of words to ignite what he was going to say… and well, let’s just say he was very successful at selling.
Mistake Number 5: Your Call To Action Is Unclear
If you’re running a marketing webinar, you generally have one of two goals: lead generation or doing more sales of your product/service (or, in many cases, those are both goals). However, often times many hosts don’t include a Call To Action (CTA) at all or, if they do, it’s unclear. This leads to poor conversions, resulting in lowered self-esteem, resulting in that lonely guy or gal sitting alone at the end of the bar for hours on end (just kidding, but only kind of).
The solution: Want your users to download a report? Send them the file directly in your webinar and tell them to download it. Want them to buy your product? Give them an exclusive discount code and direct them to your product page with an active offer in WebinarJam. Want them to sign up for your next webinar? Send them directly to your registration page. And follow up with them after the fact with an email, reiterating your CTA.
Mistake Number 6: You Tell People About Your Replay Too Early
One of WebinarJam’s many awesome features is its ability to create replica replays that look exactly like the original webinar. And they are made automatically so you, as the host, don’t have to remember to hit record. This is amazing, but you shouldn’t shout it out to the world… at least not early on. If your registrants know there’s an on-demand replay available to them, whenever they feel like watching, they may just decide that they’ll skip your live event. This stinks for your attendance rate, but would be (mostly) fine, except on-demand webinars have an average drop-off rate of 42 minutes (13 minutes shorter than live webinars).
The solution: Don’t mention the replay option until the end of your live webinar. The people who are online with you have already stayed for the majority of your presentation. And the people who skipped or left early? Well, you can send them an email letting them know what they missed, but they won’t have been absent just because they had that as an option.
Mistake Number 7: You’re Not Studying Your Analytics
So you ran a webinar and you thought it went amazing… but did it really? WebinarJam provides detailed analytics that allow you to see how many people visited your registration page, how many registered, how many people actually showed up, how many people viewed your replays, how long people stayed for, etc. And you’re making a huge mistake not carefully analyzing these statistics.
If you have a high drop-off rate at between 12 and 15 minutes, perhaps it’s time to go back and look at what you were saying at that moment. How can you make that content more interesting? If you’re getting a ton of registration page visits, but not many registrants, your webinar title might need some tweaking. And so on…
The solution: Improve your webinars by carefully reviewing your webinar analytics. Make small adjustments and see if they improve your conversions and results.
You’re Ready To Host An Amazing Webinar
Whew! If you made it through the first eight mistakes, along with these seven, you are in GREAT shape to host a fabulous webinar. And if you didn’t already notice, most of the solutions offered are pretty simple to implement.
Out of all 15 mistakes we mentioned in the two posts, which one resonated the most with you? Comment below!