Create Competitive Advantage with Webinars
   By Bob Hanson

Most companies tend to use only one kind of webinar, the marketing webinar. Marketing webinars are typically designed to attract prospects to a web seminar with the goal of setting the table for sales appointments.

While a marketing webinar is the most common use of one-to-many web collaboration services, it is by no means the only way of leveraging web events. Webinars can be used in diverse ways to cut marketing, sales, and product development costs and drive top-line growth. A great webinar strategy can even create competitive advantage.

Here are five less common but potentially effective ways of using webinars.

1. Positioning Webinars – Reach new markets or higher-level decision makers. For example, hire an analyst or consultant to talk about key problems that face a CXO, and tie the webinar into the solution that you offer. Or, run a web seminar targeted at a vertical market and help position or re-position your company within that vertical.

2. Webinars as Infomercials – Sales pitch, sales pitch, sales pitch. Recognize that the best sales pitches often involve educating prospects so they receive value even if they do not buy at the end of the event.

3. Database Building Webinars – These webinars build a list of target individuals at the “top of the marketing funnel” and are my favorite because prospects love them but so few companies do them. Think of topics which are current, newsworthy, and leverage partners and media for the most bang for your buck.

4. Webinars to Test (Seminars) – Before investing many tens of thousands of dollars on an in-person road show, consider testing and perfecting the idea through a webinar. If successful, go out on the road. They can also be used to test other initiatives like new marketing strategies or products.

5. Partner/Strategic Alliance Recruitment Webinars – This is just a marketing webinar targeted at prospective partners. Most partner recruiting is haphazard, this systematizes the process for better results.

Understanding and employing the different webinar options can help you gain access to new sales opportunities and markets, get closer to customers, create better offerings, and fuel sales growth.

Learn more from Bob Hanson, “The Webinar Professor” at


Melissa Data

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