Archive for Marketing – Page 2

6 Benefits of Doing Webinars

We’ve been doing webinars since 2008, and have seen so many amazing benefits of using webinars for our business.

Here are some of the highlight benefits of doing webinars for your business or organization:

  • Offer educational marketing — teaching is the new marketing. Sharing your experience and expertise with your followers, audience, community reaps benefits as they look to you as the trusted resources
  • Be human and give a personal touch — for a long time, we ran an online product business and therefore did not do phone support. Having regular webinars allowed our community and customers to hear us talk about what we do best. It made us human and not just a website to them.
  • Reach a worldwide audience — Webinars are cheaper than traveling and JUST as effective. As you know travel is extremely expensive and doing webinars allows us to reach global and let our customers stay in the comfort of their own homes or offices while you present your subject to them or show them a walkthrough of your products via screen sharing
  • Fill a training void — if there’s a lack of good, quality and affordable training in your niche, you can offer outstanding opportunities for your prospects and customers to learn from YOU — the expert.
  • Work smarter, not harder — you’re bound to be getting common questions that you could do a webinar, record it, and give to clients. Now you’ve multiplied your time and impact.
  • Crystalize your presentation skills — Doing webinars makes you a better presenter in-person and online. It forces you to think about your subject, organize your thoughts and then communicate it effectively to your audience.

How to Record a Webinar

In this tutorial video, I give you my best practices for recording webinars.

You’ll need the following items for a quality webinar recording and here are the webinar recommendations we give you:

  • Webinar Software: GoToWebinar
  • Video hosting: Vimeo, Viddler, Wistia or YouTube— video hosting isn’t cheap, but check out these quality sources
  • Screen recording software: Camtasia (PC or Mac) and Screenflow (Mac)
  • Microphones: Blue Snowflake (very portable & good for screencasting) and Blue Yeti (big and stable)

Here is the quick tutorial on recording webinars:

How to Setup Your First Webinar

So you’re ready to setup and host your first webinar, that’s awesome!

Here’s how you do it ….

1. Signup for GoToWebinar.com’s Free Trial

Most webinar software services offer a 30-day free trial, including GoToWebinar (which we use at StartupSofa). Go signup for a free trial as soon as possible so you can schedule your first webinar.

2. Find and set the right date and time

I put find and set the right date because you need to think through your potential audience and when is the best time for them.

I’ve found that if you’re offering quality training and value, people will attend no matter what the date or time.

However, put yourself in your customers’ shoes and figure out the right day … do Tuesdays (weekdays) work, or would Saturday (weekends) be better?

Now figure out the time you should start your webinar. Be sure to think about an end time as you’ll set that next.

One general rule of thumb about length of webinars is about 30-45 minutes for the actual presentation (making sure you’re delivering great content) … then allowing for about 15 minutes of potential spillover time and Q&A. I’ve found that if people want to stick around, I’m more than happy to answer questions. It’s a captive audience!

Total time I suggest to schedule for your first webinar? 1 hour.

Remember: You will set your webinar according to your local time. So if you think people will be attending from different time zones, you’ll want to make sure you give an easy way for them to find local time (Google “Time” and your location) and calculate when the webinar will begin in their local time.

3. Schedule your first webinar in GoToWebinar

Here’s a short video tutorial showing you how to schedule your first webinar:

4. Promote it

After you’ve scheduled your webinar, now it’s time to promote it. You want people to show up right?

You’ll want to be sure to promote it by:

  • Writing a blog post
  • Sending an email
  • Tweeting about it
  • Posting to Facebook
  • Personally emailing people you’d think would be interested (one email contact at a time)
  • Talking about it to everybody

5. Let us know how it goes!

We’d love to hear how your first webinar goes. So be sure to contact us at StartupSofa or leave a comment back here.

Happy Webinar-ing!

What is a Webinar

The definition of a webinar is fairly simple and straightforward.

A webinar is simply an online seminar or presentation.

The words web (how a webinar is delivered) and seminar (a presentation) were combined to produce the word webinar.

A webinar is presented similar to how you would deliver a topic in-person through a workshop or seminar only it is broadcast online through a computer and the Internet using an online service like GoToWebinar.

Webinar can be used in many different ways (like for online team meetings and one-on-one sales pitches) but primarily it is used to share your computer screen with your participants.

Participants sign up for your webinar just like they would at an in-person workshop, allowing you to track important information about your registrants.

Participants use their computer speakers or call in to a special phone to hear your presentation and log on to your webinar with special free software to see your screen or presentation.

The Enduring Value of a Good Email List

Internet marketers preach the importance of having a list. I do too.

An email list of targeted people in your niche is invaluable to building a sustainable business online. Trust me on this: The bigger and better the list, the more success you’ll enjoy.

We launched iThemes with an email list of about 200-300 people. That initial list and the email launched propelled us to our next product launch and gave us the momentum to grow and grow. Our list has grown over time, but each and every time we send out an email … we have a great sales day. In fact, I can easily trace the days we send emails out with our sales reports.

New emails about products = new sales

In fact, our email list is likely our most valuable non-human asset in our business.

Customers won’t just come to you. They forget. They move on. Thus, you need to invite them to come back and buy by offering them value in your product or service. And email is still one of the best ways of doing that. 

Yes, Twitter, Facebook and blog feeds are good tools for relationship building (we use them) … but NOT NEARLY as effective as a really good, targeted email list.

Here are some thoughts about cultivating good email lists ….

  • MUST be permission-based … don’t spam. The good email solutions like Aweber (I use this) and MailChimp require it.
  • With every new brand or large project I start an email list for it … this helps with segmentation and marketing to the right people.
  • Cultivate prospective customers interested in your topic (who most likely need your niche product) into a good solid, well-maintained email list.
  • For initial launch, grow a big enough list to make an initial ripple and get people buying and talking about it.
  • To sustain and expand your business, you need a growing group of people to market your work to as you release new products and features – new product releases via email equal new sales nearly every single time.
  • Free content (i.e. blogs, webinars, ebooks, etc) are great opportunities to build and cultivate a great list. <===This is how you build a target list!
  • Do surveys with it. Ask them what they want and what problems they have. This is vital for building great products that they will actually buy. When someone signs up for our email newsletter, we ask them to fill out a survey. Now I have over two years of customer data to mine when thinking about new products or features to create. That’s gold.
  • Give incentives to sign up. I use free reports, downloads and special discounts to continually build our email lists for our brands.
  • I still use text only emails … with links to bigger posts and more polished sales pages. Give people a fast and easy way to just click through if they are interested.
  • I guard our email lists. I use it for our products only. I try very hard not to flood and abuse the people who have trusted us with their email address.