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5 Tips for Creating a Webinar Promotion Calendar

Trying to figure out when to promote your webinar can be tricky. Your prospects are busy, so you know it’s important to send multiple invitations.

But you also know that they are overwhelmed with promotions, and you don’t want to be an annoyance.

What’s a webinar marketer to do?

Here are five tips to help you plan a robust promotional schedule that fills your events without overwhelming your prospects:

Tip #1: Segment your list.

It’s annoying to receive promotions – especially emails – when you’re clearly not a good prospect for the event. Avoid being an unwelcome guest in your prospects’ mailboxes by reviewing the different segments of your database and unselecting any that are clearly not a good match for what you are teaching.

This extra effort will benefit you, as well. In addition to preserving your good reputation, you’ll enjoy a better response rate and return on your marketing investment.

Let’s say you generate 100 registrations for your webinar from a list of 5,000 names. That’s a 2% conversion.

Now imagine that by careful targeting, you reduce your target pool to 2,500. Yet, because these are the prospects who were registering for your webinar anyway, you still generate 100 registrations. Your conversion rate has doubled to 4%. If you’re paying to rent those names, you’re getting a better ROI. And now that you know who your real prospects are, you can go out and find more people like them.

 

Tip #2: Start early.

People are busy. Giving prospects a courtesy “heads up” notice offers them the opportunity to block off time on their calendar.

If you’re promoting an evergreen webinar – the type that is offered every week, if not every day – you don’t need to take this step. However, if you’re promoting live, one-time-only webinars, this extra step may help nab additional registrations from prospects whose schedule would otherwise be booked. Try:

  • Sending a postcard listing all webinars you’re offering over the next three months.
  • Pitching future webinars to attendees participating in your current event.
  • Publishing a calendar of upcoming events on your website.

 

Tip #3: Stay visible.

A common mistake among webinar marketers is notifying their prospects about an upcoming event … and then fading into the background. They fear that they’ll annoy their prospects by sending “too many” promotions.

But if you don’t stay in front of your prospects, they will not remember your event – no matter how early you notified them of your event. From the time you first announce your event until the webinar goes live, you must send regular reminders. In fact…

 

Tip #4: Keep the pressure on until the end.

If webinar registrations are low, you may resign yourself to lackluster results – or even be tempted to cancel the event. Don’t.

Remember that your prospects are faced with a dizzying array of offers every time they open their inbox – for free reports, complimentary consultations, special sales … and yes, other webinars. It is easy for your promotions to get lost. You need to promote right up until your webinar starts, because there will be people who haven’t noticed your promotions yet – guaranteed.

Also recognize that prospects wait until the last minute to commit to attending, just in case something better comes along. Your webinar start time is a hard deadline that will force them to make a decision about whether or not to attend.

But to make the deadline work in your favor, you must remind them about your event. It’s not uncommon for registrations to double in the last 24 to 48 hours before a virtual event – if you keep promoting.

 

Tip #5: Find the best time to email your audience.

Email marketing trends are constantly changing. But a few guidelines seem to be perennial. Emailing on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday mornings is typically a safe decision. Mondays and Fridays can work, too.

Many companies, particularly in B2B, avoid emailing on the weekends, thinking that their prospects are not likely to be in work mode. If this is how you typically approach marketing, you might want to check your assumptions and experiment a bit:

  • Test sending promotions on the weekends. Most people stay connected and check email outside of traditional work hours. If email volume falls on the weekend, you may stand a better chance of getting through.
  • Experiment with sending emails in the evening. Many professionals use their evening hours to catch up on email that they were too busy to handle during the day.
  • See what happens if you mail on Mondays and Fridays. A study by Vertical Response showed that Monday messages tend to produce a higher return on investment (ROI), while Friday emails had a higher click-through rate (CTR).

 

So how do these tips come together to form a marketing calendar?

If you’re promoting one event a month, your promotional calendar might include:

  • Early bird email a month out, plus a listing on your event calendar, a mention at the end of your current month’s webinar, and an article on your blog.
  • 2 to 4 emails sent over the next 21 days
  • 4 emails in the last 7 days before your event … including one the day before the webinar and one the morning of the event
  • 4 to 7 social media posts the week of the event, plus a weekly post 2, 3 and 4 weeks before the webinar

If you’re promoting a weekly webinar, your promotional schedule might look like the following:

  • Mention on your event calendar as soon as you know the topic
  • A blog post 7 days before the event
  • 3 to 7 social media posts the 7 days leading up to the event
  • Emails 7, 5 and 3 days before the event
  • Urgent emails the day before and the morning of the event

The bottom line: Don’t be so worried about the response on a particular webinar that you’re unwilling to step outside the confines of your traditional campaign structure. Keep testing so you can hone in on what works best for your unique audience. Track your registrations, when they come in, and response rates to each promotional piece you send, and soon you’ll discover the winning formula for your target audience.

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