This is a guest post by Livestorm, the browser-based platform that easily connects teams on the device of their choice to create powerful communication strategies. With Livestorm you can promote, host, and analyze your events in one place.
One of the biggest challenges faced by webinar organizers is perhaps the most basic: encouraging guests to attend in the first place. Even if you can successfully garner a good number of clicks, views, and registration sign-ups, it’s not uncommon for only a fraction of registrants to actually attend the event.
In order to address this problem, AB Tasty has teamed up with video communication platform Livestorm to share some of the industry’s best tips and tricks for improving your webinar attendance rate. Keep reading to learn how you can use landing page optimization, strategic webinar promotion, and on-demand demos to engage registrants and attendees before, during, and after your online events.
Build landing pages that convert
When it comes to webinar attendance rates, few things are more important than your webinar landing pages. Unlike other website pages, which tend to be more informational, webinar landing pages exist for a singular purpose: converting visitors into registrants. If your landing page conversions have taken a bit of a dip lately—or if you’re new to the wonderful world of video conferencing, and need a place to get started—here are the best tips we’ve found for improving them.
Simplify your registration form
First, let’s talk about what is arguably the most important part of your webinar landing page: the registration form. The registration form is essentially where all your hard work pays off; the spot where visitors convert into registrants. There are two basic ways to optimize registration forms; the first and most crucial step is to minimize the number of blank fields visitors must fill out.
Many studies have found a definite, negative correlation between the number of contact form fields, and the number of form submissions, so it’s wise to limit the number of fields to five entries or less. For most webinars, a customer’s name, professional email, and job title should suffice.
Optimize your registration form placement
The second best way to boost registration form conversions is to place them “above the fold.” You may already know that this phrase, originally coined by the print news industry, refers to the literal area above the fold line in a newspaper, which was visible to potential customers. Newspaper publishers quickly realized that the best way to improve sales was to place the most eye-catching, attention-grabbing headlines there.
While the days of print newspapers are rapidly fading, the underlying logic still applies to your registration page: by keeping your most valuable information front-and-center, with no scrolling required, you’re much more likely to grab—and hold—the attention of indecisive users.
A/B test your CTAs
If the above headline seems like a bunch of alphabet soup, don’t worry; it’s actually fairly simple. A/B testing is the act of publishing a slightly-tweaked version of an original version (landing page, product page, navigation bar…) in order to discover which version yields the best outcome. “CTA”, meanwhile, stands for “Call to Action”, and refers to any action you want your website visitor to take. A good example is the small brief plug at the end of a piece of sponsored content, which urges the reader to do something (like “call now,” “click here,” or “sign up.”) To get some ideas for CTAs that are typically very effective, check out some CTA examples here..
A/B testing CTAs is quite easy via experimentation platforms like AB Tasty’s. Simply use the drag and drop editor to make the change you want to see on variation B. Maybe you want to test the wording, the color, the shape or the location of your CTA. Then, decide what amount of traffic you want to expose to the test, and let it run! You’ll get a clear answer on whether your original or variation version performed better for your chosen KPI.
Promote your webinar strategically
This is another tip that’s fairly common-sense, yet surprisingly overlooked: if you’re planning an upcoming webinar, make sure to promote it as much as possible! There are many ways to do this, but in the interest of brevity, we’ll focus on three main strategies: website optimization, email outreach, and leveraging strategic partnerships.
Optimize your website
The easiest way to promote an upcoming webinar is to simply place a promotional banner ad at the top, or in the sidebar, of your website landing pages. You can place it in key places on every page, ensuring as many site visitors will see it as possible; or take a more subdued approach, and place it on your main “home” page only. Another good place to promote your upcoming webinar is in the “help chat” feature.
Plan your email sequence
While most conversion rate optimization tips apply to your webinar registration page, there are some other ways you can increase your registrations. Good old-fashioned email remains one of the best ways to reach and engage audiences. Schedule a series of reminder emails to encourage registrants to watch the event. Make sure you A/B test your email subject lines in order to identify which greetings lead to higher open rates. The ideal email sequence before your webinar involves sending a registration confirmation, a reminder email an hour before the webinar begins, and a reminder email right as the webinar starts. You can customize this sequence based on the needs of your audience.
Build professional partnerships
Part of promoting a webinar includes creating strategic partnerships with similar brands in your industry, which you can then leverage to promote one another’s events. Obviously, you and your direct competitors probably won’t be interested in helping each other out, but if your target audience tends to consume two services or products at the same time, it might make sense to team up. Be creative, and try to think about the personality of your brand more than its practical functions. Once your partnership is in place, you can both promote each other via social media, email, and more.
Keep optimizing after your webinar
Even if your webinar event doesn’t generate the number of attendees you may have hoped for, it doesn’t mean that the event was a waste of time. You can—and should!—continue to use the content you recorded to engage people who didn’t attend; drive more leads to your products and services, and maximize your ROI. Below are a few ways to keep your webinar working for you long after the live event is over.
Some registrants sign up for webinars with no plans to attend them because they are only interested in receiving the replay. So, if your attendance rate wasn’t as high as you hoped, don’t despair! The number of registrants that watch the replay should be noted when considering attendance rates. Make sure that your replay is sent automatically to everyone that registered for your webinar, whether they attended or not. Recording and sharing live events in this way is an excellent way to engage no-shows. By sharing a recording of the show with these stakeholders, you can remind them of your expertise and relevancy, and stay top-of-mind for their next purchasing decision.
Convert your webinar into an on-demand demo
You can keep using your webinar replays to increase your ROI long after your event is over. By gating them behind a form you can turn them into on-demand webinars. On-demand webinars are pre-recorded webinars that are accessible all of the time. They can be hosted on a website, blog, or anywhere a link can be embedded.
Create evergreen content
Just as evergreen trees stay fresh and vibrant all year long, evergreen content can be reused over and over with minimal changes. This has the obvious benefit of increasing the number of eyes that see a piece of content, boosting your ROI for it, and putting your marketing dollars to good use. Your webinars can be easily repurposed into other formats, like infographics, newsletters, tutorials, and ebooks.
Improve your optimization processes with AB Tasty
That’s it—our best advice for boosting your webinar attendance rate. If you need help with A/B testing CTAs or anything else we’ve mentioned in this article, be sure to check out how AB Tasty can help you improve customer experience. AB Tasty’s solutions for marketing, product, and engineering teams let you put your best ideas to the test, revealing which messages and features drive the most engagement and maximize your growth.