The uncertainty of the past few weeks and the effects that COVID-19, or Coronavirus as it's more commonly known, has, and will continue to have on businesses across the country has been unprecedented. Companies of all sizes will need to take tentative steps in the coming weeks and possibly months, to ensure they bounce back once the threat of COVID-19 has passed.
While many will see this as a time to batten down the hatches, those businesses with a little more creative flair are seeking out ways to turn this economic uncertainty on its head. Throwing caution to the wind, businesses across the country are coming up with some very novel ideas for their business to stand-out and thrive in the current climate. Here at ExtraDigital, we salute you!
With social distancing and isolation in effect, the traditional forms of B2B lead generation are no longer an option. Exhibitions, events, networking and meetings, are all off the table; you need to take your offering to your audience and meet them where they are, which currently is online.
With internet usage surging by 50% in the past week alone and many companies operating a remote working approach, your audience can now increasingly be found online. In light of this COVID-19 pandemic, tech will save the day for many B2B businesses looking to keep their marketing aims for 2020 on track. It's going to be those businesses who are pro-active in investing in digital marketing, trialling new marketing strategies and adopting creative approaches to connect with their audience in unique ways, which will make them stand out from the crowd.
In this article, we're going to explore a couple of options you may want to consider if you're looking to get in front of your competitors or stand a chance of coming out on top once the dust has settled from all this madness.
If you, like some of our clients, have had exhibitions and events cancelled at short notice then you have two choices. Accept the consequences and reposition your marketing efforts around a new date later in the year, or worst of all, shelve them entirely. That's a lot of prep work down the drain.
If you have content ready, now is the time to act. Your other option is to keep the momentum you have built for the event going, and take your planned event material online, where your audience awaits.
Over the next few weeks, where many are working from home, people will be getting to grips with software they are using for the first time. Communication, video and collaboration tools are among some of the types of software that will be used to mitigate the impact of working from home for many companies.
With the adoption of these new tools, users will be more inclined to experiment with other tools and more open to content offerings from businesses looking to interact online.
Your planned material for an event, an exhibition or a seminar doesn't have to go to waste. Take this content online in the form of a Webinar and engage your audience, captivate them with your story, educate them on your industry sector and highlight the benefits of your business offering.
What is a webinar?
A webinar is a virtual event that is conducted online. They are often of an educational or instructive nature and include audio and visual communication between the speaker and the attendees.
There are plenty of tools to help you connect with your audience. It's best to consider your objectives when choosing one. The format of the webinar, the number of attendees, how easy is it to use, and the cost will be among the questions you need to answer when selecting the right tool.
Next, you must consider your content and the format of the webinar. How can you convey your message clearly and in the most engaging way for your audience? Maybe you had a slide deck planned for a seminar, or decide to walk-through the point from a recent white paper, perhaps a Q & A format on a particular subject. Whatever you decide, be clear on the main takeaways you want to leave your customer with, and send them off with the right impression of you and your offering. Remember, education and establishing your business as an expert in the field is worth more than the hard-sell.
With your objectives defined, tool selected and your content polished, now you need to consider time and date that suits your audience. According to ON24, Tuesday from 10-11 a.m. GMT is the best day to host a webinar because it's excellent for a wide range of time zones.
Once your date is in place, begin to promote the webinar. How? I hear you ask. Well, you'll want to leverage email and social media and potentially some paid advertising, if your budget stretches to it, to raise awareness, but, crucially, you will need a process for your audience to sign-up.
A simple landing page, giving information about the webinar and what the attendee can expect to gain alongside a simple sign-up form can be a powerful tool in logging attendees, to keep them in the loop in the run-up to the webinar.
HubSpot Free CRM
Now that all sounds pretty simple right? Maybe not, if you're not currently using CRM (Customer Relationship Management) software or any automation tools; or aren't a tech wizard who can get a page on your site built and tested, but help is at hand. HubSpot offers a free CRM along with a suite of marketing tools that will enable you to execute the above with ease, and if you're struggling, you can rely on the team at ExtraDigital to give you all the support you need. Here you can build forms quickly, link these forms to an active list and plan effective email communication to keep your attendees interested in the run-up to your first webinar.
But it doesn't end there, once the webinar is complete you'll want to engage with the attendees, to get some feedback or send them materials from the webinar. Nurturing the attendees beyond the webinar can lead to a once interested contact becoming your next best customer.
Should you not want to go to the effort of hosting a webinar, HubSpot offers excellent tools to a gate a piece of valuable content with a form. Promote this content and landing page effectively and watch your pipeline grow with a flurry of interested contacts.
We know, this can sound like an awful lot of work, especially if resources are thin on the ground or you're battling to keep staff working efficiently from home. If this is the case, but you want to explore the potential a Webinar, and the HubSpot free CRM could have for your marketing strategy, then reach out to ExtraDigital today.
As HubSpot Gold Partners we're experienced at onboarding and running successful Inbound Campaigns for a wide range of B2B clients, creating a wealth of fresh leads for your sales teams.
Combat COVID-19 with ExtraDigital.