Webinars have become one of the most effective methods of attracting qualified prospects. But with so many now being publicized, we need an effective invitation process that rises above the noise. The first objective then is to create a meaningful invitation. A simple text email won’t attract enough attention.
The invitation itself is a special kind of sales tool. It needs a compelling subject line, and should promote the presenter, especially if he or she has strong personal credentials. Using as few words as possible, the invitation must communicate that the webinar will offer new information or insights. And without being too loud, it must attract the eye and convey a feeling of professionalism. It should include a photo of the presenter, and any other graphics that emphasize the quality of the event.
Once the invitation is good-to-go, we need to reach out to enough people to meet our audience size goal. If we require pre-registration, we need twice as many people as our attendance goal. Typically, only half of the pre-registrants actually attend. The remainder may forget, or may be unable to spare the time from their last-minute scheduling. If we invite people from a general list we can only expect to register about two percent of them. Therefore an audience of 100 may require a list of 10,000.
Fortunately several good practices can improve the invitation success rate.
- Send multiple invitations. The first should be about two weeks before the event. The second should be 1-2 days before the event. The last should be a few hours before start time.
- Offer a choice of two different dates and at different times of the day. The individual audience size may be smaller for each presentation, but together the two events will reach more people than a single presentation.
- Offer a pre-recorded, on-demand version, to capture attendees who would otherwise be lost.