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Why webinars should be a part of your marketing strategy

Learn the different types of webinar you can host to attract and connect with new customers

Webinars are, essentially, online workshops, courses, demonstrations or seminars. They can either be live or recorded, and they can take various forms. Depending on what your goals are and the audience you are targeting, you will need to host a specific type of webinar.

Why webinars?

Webinars are highly-effective tools at any stage of the buyer’s journey, from awareness to the consideration and decision-making stages. Webinars can help you:

What types of webinars can you create?

Depending on your goals – which we will be covering in detail in the following section of this guide – there are multiple types of webinars that you can create.

In order to achieve your goals, you’ll need to create the right type of webinar.

Types of webinars you can create include:

Educational webinars

Educational webinars are basically online courses covering a subject in detail. The subject needs to be closely related to your niche and should ideally respond to a clear need of your target audience.

Educational webinars are not about your products or services, or about your business. rather, they are all about helping the participant solve one of their pressing issues.

This educational webinar from Education Week and Voyager Sopris discusses supporting students with reading difficulties, including dyslexia, for improving academic outcomes.

These types of webinars are particularly useful for:

Product webinars

Product webinars focus on your businesses’ products or services, whether it’s demonstrating how they work, or explaining the benefits of using them.

These types of webinars are all about your product, which makes them ideal for leads that are further down the buying process, approaching or already in the decision-making stage. Alternatively, they can also be used to solidify relationships with existing customers.

EventMobi ran a product webinar aimed at event marketing professionals to show the platform can make event organization easier.

These types of webinars are particularly useful for:

Q&A webinars

You can also get your audiences involved by putting together a question and answer webinar.

These types of webinars allow audiences to ask the questions they have, which can be about your product, or they can be educational in nature.

These types of webinars are better suited to those with some experience holding live webinars, as you need to be quick and knowledgeable when responding to questions.

The benefits of holding these types of webinars are that not only do they require less preparation beforehand than other types, but they also get the audience involved and allow you to learn more about their needs and to showcase your skills and knowledge.

Gartner ran a Q&A webinar with their VP, Richard Ries, discussing the results of Gartner's 2020 survey in customer problems and expectations for the year ahead.

These types of webinars are particularly useful for:

Panel webinars

Another option is to create a panel-style webinar, where the host interviews one or a few different experts/thought leaders/influencers from their niche.

Like Q&A webinars, panel webinars can be very engaging for the audience, especially if they are familiar with the interviewees.

The biggest benefit of holding this type of webinar is that it helps build up trust and credibility in your niche – largely depending on whom you’re inviting to speak. The audience gets to learn more from people they know and respect and that helps you to, in turn, boost your credibility. Since different influencers attend and will promote these webinars, this can further help boost attendance!

They can also be used for promoting your products; for example, by inviting top clients to discuss their needs and how your product helped fulfil them.

FOSSA hosted a three-person expert panel to discuss Open Source adoption in 2020, including panelists from Verizon Media and the Linux Foundation.

These types of webinars are particularly useful for:

Social media webinars

With the advent of live streaming on most major social networks, it’s brought about all kinds of opportunities for businesses – including holding webinars directly on their social media profiles.

These types of webinars should be more casual, as well as engaging for the audience; Q&A’s and panel-like webinars would work best in these cases.

There is little preparation required beforehand and they allow you to reach new audiences and audiences who otherwise might not have participated. In most cases, people need to sign up or register to participate in a webinar, but with live streaming, they can simply join when they see it in their timelines.

Sketchbook Skool hosts several video webinars through their YouTube channel, which means they can utilize the platform's chat function to gather audience questions.

These types of webinars are particularly useful for:

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