Marketers, particularly those with experience in field marketing understand the effort required to have guests attend a live event. Not surprisingly some are skeptical, or at least uncertain about whether their audience will watch on-demand webinars.

To appreciate the answer to this question it is necessary to recognise that webinars are a different type of event, and offer greater opportunities for the longevity of the content.

This is the key issue we addressed in the third episode of our series on Maximising Webinar ROI which – not surprisingly – you can now view on-demand!

Watch all three episodes in our Maximising Webinar ROI Series

The proof of the effectiveness of on-demand webinars can be found in the APAC data for the ON24 Webinar Benchmark Report 2020.

The trend is clear, engagement with on-demand webinars is growing and heading towards parity with live events.

That growth has been consistent for years now in the report.  

It remains the case in APAC that the live experience is the preferred choice for a majority of the audience. However, 43 percent of our audiences say they will only ever watch your webinar on-demand. 

That is a huge segment and one that can not be ignored. It is no wonder then that anecdotally, many of our customers and clients look at going straight to on-demand.

In a sense, that is not surprising. We live in an on-demand economy, where we rely on services like Uber, Grab, and  Deliveroo to meet our needs instantly.

In the same way that we don’t want to wait ten minutes for an uber, customers don’t want to wait four weeks for your live webinar to be made available online.

Instead, you’ve got their attention at that point of email open or when they click on your social banner, and you need to act on their intent.

Nor is this an APAC only trend. Around the world, we are seeing the rise in demand for on-demand.

The bottom line is that if you do not have an on-demand strategy to extend the life of your webinar beyond the live event you are leaving a lot of potential sales on the table.

So be sure to get the recording up quickly – ON24 will have the recording ready in about 30 minutes. And don’t be afraid to send the recording to the event no-shows, as well as to the people who attended.

But don’t stop there.

Another trend that is made clear by the data is that while there is a long tail in viewership, most marketers are cramming their on-demand activity into the period immediately following the live event, with most activity tapering off after about a fortnight.

Again this reflects a physical event mindset. A better approach – subject to the content in the webinar obviously – is to think more long term and to consider the webinar content an evergreen asset.

Too many marketers aren’t just missing an opportunity to drive new viewership – they are ignoring it altogether.

Engagement

Finally, marketers are also often surprised to learn that the level of engagement in on-demand webinars is as strong as it is. Typically in APAC the average viewing time is 41 minutes which is significant compared to the 55 minutes time typically spent watching a live webinar, especially as in on-demand viewers can skip through the content.

And of course, as the content is digital, do not restrict your thinking to just publishing the entire event. 

Consider chapterising the content, breaking it into smaller consumable chunks focusing on specific ideas. This gives the customer more control over getting to their personal interest points faster and in particular, meets the needs of time-poor senior executives

In this series on Maximising webinar ROI, we have examined the most effective ways of getting people to your webinar, strategies for building engagement on the day, and the importance of utilising the content after the live event is over. We have created a dedicated page with all the content on as a resource for you whenever you need it. 

This article is published by the Which-50 Digital Intelligence Unit of which )n24 is a member. Members provide their insights and expertise for the benefit of our readers. Membership fees apply.

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