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How To Transform A Webinar Into Business Revenue

Here are 4 ways that you can turn your webinars into income-generating machines.

Adam Deutsch

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Webinars are more than just a proven way to promote your goods and services, they are an extremely powerful modality for educating, training, entertaining, and converting consumers into loyal customers.

A main reason for their effectiveness is the meteoric rise of video content in the digital world. The other half of the puzzle can be attributed to the fact that the vast majority of webinars are free events.

This does not mean that all webinars are free or that paid versions are somehow inferior. This is a very versatile modality; that’s one of the reasons it works so well.

Webinar provider ClickMeeting recently articulated this with a free eBook about how to make money using webinars, which illustrates a variety of money-making tactics fueled by technology.

Webinars can be used at nearly all stages of the buyer’s journey without losing effectiveness or potency. Instead of just being a supplemental tool, webinars can become a source of revenue in their own right; you just have to know how to structure and leverage your broadcasts accordingly.

If you are looking for ways to generate a meaningful income through webinar technology, you’ve come to the right place.

Related: 5 Best Online Businesses To Start This Year (Infographic)

Here are 4 ways that you can turn your webinars into income-generating machines.

1Create a Webinar Series

If you haven’t considered making a webinar for the actual thing you are selling, try this on for size:

A great example of a brand selling a webinar series comes from Social Media Examiner. Each year, the company holds its annual summit that they creatively (and cost effectively) turned into a series of webinar presentations from renowned marketing experts like Joel Comm and Ian Cleary.

The series is organised so that each presenter is allotted one session to discuss their particular topic of expertise. All of the presentations are available to watch live or, for those who can’t make the live broadcast, are accessible as a recording. In either format, there is a fee for access.

In addition to the actual presentations, Social Media Examiner supplies attendees with audio files and transcripts to provide added value to the experience.

This is a unique way to leverage your brand as an industry thought leader too. By consolidating other experts in your field, you can make legitimate impacts and revenues by hosting a webinar series event.

2Sell an Online Course

online-course

The previously mentioned eBook points out that while sharing knowledge is inherently a good thing, one shouldn’t do it to their own detriment:

“If you share your knowledge on how to excel in a specific area or how to improve a skill, don’t give away your expertise for free, with exposure as the only compensation. Instead, consider sharing it in a webinar with paid access. Educate, teach, guide, and share knowledge – and get paid.”

The tactic of selling an online course via webinars is extremely fruitful and has made many people legitimately wealthy. This is exactly how Lewis Howes went from sleeping on his sister’s couch to being a millionaire 2 years later.

Selling an online course can be fairly simple work. Tools like Kajabi have made this accessible to even the technically illiterate. From building a website to selling and marketing your content – online course builders like Kajabi supply the entire back end needed.

The main thing you need is enough knowledge to fill roughly five videos worth of material that you can promote through your video series.

It doesn’t matter if you are training people to achieve higher employee engagement rates, teaching them to be better chefs, or helping them learn to meditate; people are searching for everything online. Don’t be timid with your knowledge.

Online courses differ from a webinar series in that courses provide a step-by-step program with clearly defined goals. Additionally, courses typically integrate supplemental materials like worksheets, checklists, and similar content that are worked on or referenced inside and outside of the course.

Related: Forget The 4Ps Of Selling. It’s Time For A New Selling Strategy

3Promote Your Product

Pitching a product during a free webinar is certainly the most common way to generate revenue through this medium, but that’s because it’s extremely effective.

This one is fairly easy to model and replicate using the following steps:

  • Promote a free event with content and email marketing, supplemented by PPC advertising
  • Spend the first 30 minutes of the webinar providing your audience with valuable advice that they can use to improve their life or career.
  • Pitch viewers your product or service by tying it back to the original pain point that got them to sign up in the first place.

The best part about this model is that everybody wins. The attendees gain actionable wisdom and expertise. You widen your audience, collect a bunch of email addresses, and likely gain a few customers too. If you integrate a proposal software in conjunction, you’ve got an insanely streamlined acquisition and onboarding process.

4Use a Webinar as a Sales Tool

This is one of the easiest tactics to implement as it requires almost no extra effort.

You can add value to a subscription, membership, course, product, or service that you are offering by adding in webinar recordings as a bonus; this is a fantastic way of driving additional sales.

Another way to approach this simplistic sales scheme is to create a sense of urgency around purchasing something by offering your webinar(s) as a “limited time” extra; something that consumers would normally have to pay for.

Related: Using An Online Meeting To Talk With Your Subscribers

For any potential customers that find themselves riding the fence on whether to make the purchase or not, this is often the extra push that they needed to click that “Buy Now” CTA.

These are just a few of the ways to earn money using webinars; ClickMeeting’s eBook dives into scads more details. Many entrepreneurs have made webinars the platform on which they built their fortune; do not underestimate their power. This broadcasting tool is the real deal, and you should be in on the action too.

Adam is a freelance social media and small business marketing consultant specializing in helping "brick and mortar" business to master the online sphere. Adam has been creating content and paid media strategies for business for over a decade and is widely cited guest blogger on marketing sites. Adam is a New York City native and a big sports fan of anything from New York.

Company Posts

Customers Are The Heart Of Innovative Businesses

Keep your customer at the heart of your business.

Viga Interactive

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One of the main reasons start-ups fail is because they don’t create solutions that meet their customers’ needs. Failure is avoidable. Businesses that understand their customers feelings, challenges, expectations and motivations make themselves indispensable in highly competitive markets because they recognise that true innovation is led by customer insight.

An incredible example of a business that believes in innovation driven by insight is Netflix. They revolutionised the way people watch video content by listening to their customer’s needs. You’ve probably heard the story before: after paying a $40 overdue DVD fee, Reed Hastings co-founded Netflix. He was simply too busy to return his DVD. He recognised that this experience wasn’t exclusive to him, but that it was a problem that many people faced. He saw a gap in the market for receiving and returning videos more effectively, and that is how the $150 billion business was born.

If your start-up doesn’t fulfil a human need, then you’re setting yourself up for failure. It’s not enough to have a cool idea. Ask yourself, “What is the market need behind the offering?” and then test ways of delivering your offering in the most user-friendly manner. Talk to your consumers, understand their likes and dislikes and establish your business purpose before haphazardly allocating funds to R&D.

Related: How Netflix Is Now Disrupting The Film Industry By Embracing Short-Term Chaos

You can’t go from being a California based DVD-by-mail provider, to becoming the world’s largest online video streaming service without a business plan. It’s important to recognise the step-by-step process of success. Netflix didn’t go from delivering DVD’s to pouring capital into the production of video content within six months. That sort of development would have bankrupt the company almost immediately. It took 21 years for the business to become content creators.

  • In 1999, the company became a subscription service because they found that customers preferred paying a monthly fee rather than making a once off purchase.
  • Then, in 2009, the company used investor capital to expand their DVD collection because their clients wanted a larger selection of movies.
  • In 2010, the business expanded internationally because they saw a gap in the market across various countries.
  • Finally, in 2013, Netflix created its first original content series because customers craved fascinating content beyond the overused Hollywood archetype.

The point is: Progress didn’t happen overnight. The business had to set goals and objectives. They then had to fund their growth by presenting market opportunities, backed by customer insights, to their investors. Establish your start-up one step at a time and make sure every progression isn’t innovation for innovations sake – it must be inspired by a human need.

13-reasons-whyNetflix was founded by a computer scientist and a marketing director. While one partner focused on Netflix’ service development, the other focused on sales. Since the company’s origin, collaboration and balance have been the cornerstones of the business’ success.

Netflix is currently composed of a diverse team of tech-professionals and designers. They understand the importance of combining technology and design to offer customer-inspired user-experiences.

After conducting consumer research, Netflix discovered that series and movie artwork influences viewing decisions by 82%. This has resulted in the creation of more descriptive and provocative designs. Netflix is known for leveraging human-behaviour to revolutionise their service offering.

As an entrepreneur, you can increase your ROI by partnering with the experts that understand human-based innovation.

Keep your customer at the heart of your business.

Related: What These 5 Digital KPIs Say About Your Business

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Company Posts

Building Customer Relationships

Are you working in a retail environment? Explore the Wits Plus online short course in Customer Relationship Building through the DigitalCampus.

Wits Plus

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Most retail businesses agree that providing excellent customer experience is imperative for a retail store to be successful.

But what is customer experience?  According to Forrester, an independent market research company, customer experience is “How customers perceive their interactions with your company”.

They explain that good customer experiences have three relevant characteristics for the customer:

  1. They are useful, thus deliver value and meet customer needs.
  2. They are usable, so the value is easy to find and engage with.
  3. They are enjoyable, and emotionally engaging so people want to use them.

The customer ‘interactions’ are the two-way exchanges that customers have with the company. A customer will make a judgement as to whether the company meets their needs, is easy to use and enjoyable to do business with. These judgements happen every single time the customer interacts with the company: when they navigate the company website, call the contact centre, enter the retail store, buy company products, talk to an employee, respond to an advert and so forth.

Providing excellent customer experience is challenging. The systems and processes required for excellent customer experience include understanding your customers, building a positive emotional connection with them, capturing and acting on feedback, developing and training everyone in the company and measuring the return on investment. All this is difficult enough to manage in a national company but what does it mean in this age of international and multinational companies?

Related: Customer Control For Entrepreneurs

Providing a superb customer experience is first underpinned by understanding the cultures, history, experiences and sensibilities of customers and then respecting them. Again, this is more manageable if your company is national and its cultural values are aligned with the national values and history. However, achieving this in a multi-national organisation where the historical experience and cultural values of the organisation may not be aligned with the country they are operating in, can be a real challenge.  A diverse workforce is also imperative to providing an outstanding customer experience and the importance of diversity is magnified in a multinational organisation.

This is demonstrated by the infamous ‘H&M hoodie incident’ that happened early this year. In Sweden the only jungle is urban, there are no wild monkeys and the black population is relatively small. As one would expect in a Scandinavian organisation, the H&M group board has good male-female diversity, but there are few black Swedes in senior decision-making positions. Few Swedes have experienced how skin colour can provide an all-pervasive feeling of difference, of ‘us and them’, and they have little, if any, understanding of these issues on a personal level.

However, H&M is a global organisation and therefore needs to have an intimate understanding of the different cultures and sensibilities of their customers in the different countries where they have a footprint; and respect them. The simple expedient of introducing a process whereby a local executive ensures that a new product is culturally sensitive could have demonstrated some organisational understanding of this issue.

The H&M hoodie debacle is an excellent example of how not understanding the customer can negatively impact on customer experience; how it can break the emotional engagement with customers and lose their trust. This incident has made it difficult for South African customers to engage positively with H&M. The importance of diversity in the senior teams throughout a multinational can directly impact the customer experience and the bottom line. In short, one picture and a hoodie nearly undermined the reputation of the organisation in South Africa!

Are you working in a retail environment? Explore the Wits Plus online short course in Customer Relationship Building through the DigitalCampus.

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Entrepreneurs Can Explore Opportunities In Growing Digital Textile And Interior Décor Markets

Those wanting to explore opportunities in digital textile printing can speak to experts at the Sign Africa and FESPA Africa Expo, taking place from 12-14 September at Gallagher Convention Centre.

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According to Mark Sollman, application manager at Mimaki, ‘Digital printing technologies are revolutionising the interior décor business. Not only can these items be produced more rapidly and with less waste than with traditional manufacturing processes, digital printing offers the ability to customise – or even personalise – interior décor.’

The global printed textile market is huge, estimated at over 32 billion square metres of output annually. Print is widely used to decorate the surface appearance of furniture and surfaces. Digital textile printing is ideal for customisation – allowing consumers to print unique products for their homes or businesses.

There are also emerging niche opportunities. For example, with the wide use of online travel review sites, hotels are increasingly keen to deliver a fresh experience. A ‘TripAdvisor effect’ has been identified, with the claim it reduces the hotel renovation cycle from every seven years to every five years, consequently boosting the market for printed décor.

There are many T-shirt printers offering a web-to-shirt service, where the buyer uploads their own unique image to be printed on to a garment on demand. The printing takes a large part of the value and will be done close to the buyer. For a fashion collection, stock-outs may be avoided by printing and making popular sizes and styles locally in small quantities.

Related: Explore Business Opportunities In Print At The Sign Africa And FESPA Africa Expo

This makes higher manufacturing cost less of a problem, and internet retailers can extend this with only commissioning the product after a sale has been completed online. Increasingly, supply chains are being pressured to provide greater flexibility, which inkjet textile printing is able to provide.

Applications with interior décor include; customised wall coverings and photo wall murals; window coverings and wall decals; curtains and blinds, cushions, lampshades and bags.

Those wanting to explore opportunities in digital textile printing can speak to experts at the Sign Africa and FESPA Africa Expo, taking place from 12-14 September at Gallagher Convention Centre. There are also a range of educational features, including: 

Textile Experience

Visit this hands-on workshop where printers can learn different techniques all taught by Charlie Taublieb, who has been in the screen printing industry since 1976, and heads up Taublieb Consulting in Greenwood Village, Colorado, a company specialising in technical screen printing consulting for textile printers. This takes place from 12-14 September, in hall 1 on the Rexx Screen & Digital Supplies stand.

T-Shirt and Bag Printing Workshop

Free demonstrations by local experts on T-shirts and bags with speciality printing techniques, direct to transfer and screen printing. For more info visit http://bit.ly/EntrepreneurSignAfrica5

Related: Considerations For Signage And Printing Industry Start-Ups

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