Webinars can be a truly powerful tool in Medical Device marketing. They provide a forum for your company to establish itself as a thought leader. In addition, they can be inexpensive revenue driver for your business. For instance, did you know that 20-40% of all webinar attendees become qualified leads?
Since the onset of the pandemic, the internet has been saturated with webinars leading to much speculation about whether they are still as successful as they once were.
That is why it is so important to run webinars the right way, ensuring that they are engaging enough to capture an audience and keep their attention. We’re going to share our 12 top tips for running successful medical device webinars.
73% of B2B marketers and sales leaders say webinars are the best way to generate high-quality leads (source)
In 2017 webinars were reported as one of the top revenue drivers for B2B marketers (before Covid-19 drove up the popularity of webinars!) (source)
Webinars produce 453 times less CO2 than in-person events (source)
Pharmaceutical webinars receive the highest attendance rate at 63% demonstrating that the life sciences industry clearly engages in webinars) (source)
89% of marketers believe webinars outperform other channels in creating qualified leads. (source)
Are people bored of medical device webinars?
Firstly, we need to address the worries that webinars aren’t as popular as they once were. There is a belief that there are now so many companies running webinars that they just don’t have the same appeal as before and consequently, the number of webinar attendees is dropping. In a sense this is true, people are bored of poor quality, sales-led webinars.
We still find that medical device webinars that are informative and provide vital insights are attracting hundreds of registrations. Creating helpful content without asking for anything in return evokes a sense of trust with your potential customer, building the foundations of a relationship that is likely to generate better ROI than sales pitches that ask for something without giving anything in return. Webinars that are led by HCPs vs sales reps or business leads will always deliver better returns, as people are expecting content they can apply.
So, it is important that webinars are highly relevant to the potential audience and are made to be informative, rather than to promote a medical device. For instance, a good title might be something like ‘Complications in orthopaedic surgery and how to address them’. This will help to build trust with your audience, by providing them with genuinely helpful information.
Our top tips
Start promotion a month before
One of the biggest stresses with running webinars is gathering registrations, with so much noise about it, it can be hard for companies to cut through and get noticed to earn registrations and attendees. Because of this, marketers may think they need to start promoting the event months in advance. We wouldn’t recommend this, as it is such a long time for people who register early, they may forget about the event by the time it arrives.
Instead, we suggest beginning promotion a month before the date. This is plenty of time to gather your registrations via promotion on social
media and email campaigns, but it is not so long that people will forget they even registered in the first place.
Encourage speakers to promote
Another great way to promote webinars is to ask speakers to use their platforms to also advertise their appearance on the panel. This will allow you to capitalise on their audience as well, expanding your reach.
Optimise the registration process
Getting people to click to register for the webinar on your social posts or emails is a success, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that they will follow through and register. You need to be able to ensure that they actually complete the registration, which requires optimising the registration page.
Firstly, you need to ensure that the page looks good by including the company branding. The whole process should feel smooth, designing the registration page with your brand logo and colours is one way to help with that.
Next, you need to make sure that the description is enticing. It should discuss the topic of the webinar and make it clear what people will gain from attending the session. Panellist information should also be included, to let people know who they can expect to hear from and why they are a credible source of information. We’d recommend collecting their job role, a recent photo and their bio for the webinar registration page.
Finally, the description should end with a call-to-action, encouraging people to follow through and register, and what they can expect to happen after they have registered, for instance ‘you will receive a confirmation email shortly’.
Use a diverse panel
People may be less inclined to register for a webinar if it doesn’t feature a diverse panel that will present differing points of view. A panel of speakers that are too similar, for instance in their job role, may be boring for the viewer.
Furthermore, companies that feature a panel made up entirely of men may appear to audiences as outdated and therefore alienate some of their audience, so this should be avoided if possible. This is known as a "manel".
Pre-record and edit speakers
Presenting live can be difficult, but it can be especially awkward when you can’t see your audience or their reactions. That’s why we recommend that panellist presentations are recorded in advance, so that they can be edited. The final result will be much more polished and will allow the presenter to get their point across succinctly, without feeling the pressure of having an audience.
This will also be more engaging for the audience, and it will reflect well on the webinar host, who has clearly put time and effort into producing the webinar.
If pre-recorded presentations doesn't sound like the right fit for your webinar and you would prefer to go down the route of open discussion, ensure that you have plenty of topics and questions on hand. You should also prep your panellists and let them know what to expect beforehand.
Start at a time that works for your audience
The time that your webinar starts should be determined based on when your audience will be able to and are likely to attend. For instance, if you are trying to target an audience in a time zone that isn’t the same as the one you’re in, you will need to adjust your timings to suit your audience.
This article suggests that the ideal time to host a webinar is between 11am and 2pm, but if you are hoping to attract health care professional, it may be better to host in the evening, when they are less busy with patients. In our experience of hosting webinars for our clients, 7pm on a Monday or a Tuesday is a good time for surgical teams.
Before setting the webinar live, there should be some time set aside to test all speakers’ mics and ensure they are comfortable with the running of the webinar. This should include having someone on hand to act as technical support in case any issues occur. Technical issues halfway through the webinar will not reflect kindly on the host.
Have a moderator to run the session
A moderator on the session can help things to run smoothly and will keep the audience abreast of what is happening at every stage. The moderator can introduce each panellist and facilitate the Q and A session.
Mix up the format
It is hard to hold people’s attention after 10 minutes, so it is useful to mix up the content to keep people engaged. Instead of having people talk solidly for an hour, it can be beneficial to incorporate videos, polls and other interactive features to hold the viewer’s attention.
We find that the ideal format is to begin with video to draw the viewer in and then to hold their attention the webinar should be split into three sections, giving panellists up to 15 minutes for their presentation and then finish with 15 minutes of a Q and A session. Webinars really shouldn’t exceed an hour as it is hard to keep hold of people’s attention for that long and it will take up a large chunk of their day, perhaps discouraging them from registering.
Have seed questions ready
When it comes to the Q and A section, viewers are usually armed and ready with questions, but it is a good idea to prepare some questions just in case. The moderator should have some seed questions they can use to get a conversation flowing, which should hopefully encourage viewers to begin submitting their own questions. The last thing you want is for the webinar to be ended awkwardly because there are no questions from the audience.
Survey the attendees
Once the webinar is finished it’s a good idea to gather feedback. Zoom allows hosts to direct attendees to a survey once they close the webinar, which presents a great opportunity to hear from your potential customers.
You should enquire to find out what they enjoyed about the webinar, where they think there could be areas of improvement and what topics they would like to hear more about. This will give you valuable insights into the wants and needs of your customer, which will not only help you to run better webinars
in the future, but can have a positive impact on your marketing as a whole. The better you know your audience, the better you can appeal to them. Surveys are also a great way to do a small amount of market research, you can add 1-2 non webinar related questions while you have an engaged audience.
Use the content on social media
Just because the webinar has finished, it doesn’t mean that you should stop promoting it. Clips and quotes from the session can make great content on social media for those who missed it. Videos perform well on social media in terms of engagement, so reusing the content from your webinar is a great way to easily create videos that will benefit your social media offering as a whole.
You can also allow your audience to watch a recording of the session, expanding its reach even further. Often recordings of webinars see even more success than the original event because they are available on demand, it doesn’t require people to be available at a certain time on a certain date.
Time to host your own medical device webinar
Webinars can bring in an impressive number of leads for your business as they allow you to display your knowledge, portraying you as a knowledge leader in order to build trust with potential customers. But they have to be done right, otherwise, they may not see the same level of success. Our top tips should help you to host your own events, but get in touch with us if you would like our help.
We also interviewed Becca, our Events Co-ordinator, to find out what she thinks makes an event of any kind more successful be in online or in-person, visit our article on medical device events to learn more.
About Podymos Podymos is a dedicated medical device marketing agency. We are passionate about sharing relevant knowledge to expand our clients’ capabilities. If you would like to find out more about what we do, you can visit our services page, or get in contact with us.
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