Technology now gives us the opportunity to listen and learn from events all over the world, webinars and videos are two different methods that achieve this successfully. But wait, webinars & videos - they’re the same, aren’t they? Well, not quite...let's see some benefits to using both in your marketing
From my experience these terms are often used interchangeably and in some cases are misunderstood. I have often heard “They both involve a camera, you just point and shoot, right?” but there is a lot more involved and when utilised, they can be very effective means of communication.
So what are the differences you ask? Well in short, a webinar is a live interactive broadcast, whereas a video is uploaded to a server and distributed at a later date.
I love watching videos. As viewers, I think we can all relate to those moments of scrolling through our social media channels and consecutively watching short clips, sometimes hours at a time. They are quick and convenient methods of gaining information. However, when I watch a webinar it is a different experience entirely. Typically being a live session, I can interact with the speakers and contribute to the content being discussed there and then. I am no longer a passive viewer. Additionally, if I can’t tune in at that time, I can catch up with the on demand version at a later date.
Which should you choose?
You can use both of these mediums in your marketing strategies, as each have slightly different benefits. Here is a list of 5 benefits for each method:
If a picture says a 1000 words, then a video is priceless.
This trending stat is making the rounds at the moment, according to Dr. James McQuivey’s Forrester study, one minute of online video is equal to about 1.8 million written words! People are much more likely to watch a 2 minute video than read through a wall of text. They are much more accessible and they’ll hopefully be a lot more visually pleasing.
Websites and search results that contain video are automatically ranked higher in your search results, youtube is the second largest search engine afterall. Including a video in your content is enough to increase your SEO, as it sends signals to search engines stating you have rich media on your site relevant to the search and therefore is ranked higher in the results.
Ever tried reading an article on your smartphone? It can be a nightmare scrolling through trying to make it to the end, but by having video available on mobile you can connect with users on the move much more conveniently. A study from IAB shows that video is on the rise with 35% of respondents viewing content on mobile devices.
It’s easy to share links across multiple social media platforms, like facebook and linkedin, hubspot outlines that “92% of mobile video consumers share videos with others”. It is no longer a novelty, but a powerful tool in engaging your audience.
Personalise your brand online. By using video you can connect more with your audience with the individuality, storytelling and with a sense of reality it offers. You can speak to your target audience directly and gain their trust via video demos.
Due to the reputation and level of content usually invested in a webinar, people are much more likely to divulge additional data. A webinar can provide you with tonnes of information and potential leads. Your webinar platform will likely give you an export of who registered, who attended, and how long they viewed your content. You can also integrate your platform directly into your marketing automation service.
This is one of the biggest advantages to producing a webinar. Once they have signed up, how do you keep their attention? You can use multiple tools on offer such as Q&A, polling, surveys and/or a chat room. You can now even embed twitter feeds into your sessions for your networking needs.
By partnering with a brand you could help position your company as an industry leader, while building your brand presence. 71% of people said they would attend a webinar to evaluate new products and services, which are why sponsored webinars are still a valuable proposition.
With 24/7 accessibility and convenience of attending, webinars are an effective medium for learning complex information in short segments. This offers many benefits to professionals who would like to fit training courses into their busy schedules and a unique chance for you to learn more about your market, whilst increasing your brand reputation.
Keep costs low
As a webinar is online you no longer need to hire a venue to interact with your market, therefore saving on all the other associated expenditures too.
BONUS TIP! - Expand your content marketing
Here's the thing… once a webinar has launched and becomes on demand, it essentially becomes a video and opens up several more opportunities to expand your content marketing plans - without any extra budgeting needed. This means we can then repurpose the video and extend the life cycle, getting the most return of investment.
Both of these methods are as equally important as the other and have slightly different purposes. A webinar could be done on a monthly or quarterly basis and used to build your community, whilst gaining further business. Whereas video might be something you do on a more regular basis and incorporated as part of your content marketing strategy. And don't forget, you can use your video content in your webinar slides to add impact and engage your audience.
Remember, there is no one single method in reaching your audiences and by having a varied approach you can retain their attentions for longer.