Making money with webinars is very possible!
They tend to be easier to convert into income than other blog monetization strategies, too, due to the personal nature of these free online workshops.
Additionally, webinars are a powerful tool for building an email list, growing a community, and nurturing relationships with your audience.
Webinars can be intimidating if you don’t know what you’re doing.
Luckily, this episode of The Profitable Travel Blogger Podcast can help!
In this episode, you’ll learn:
- 10’s do’s and 3 don’ts for hosting the perfect webinar
- What an effective webinar structure looks like
- How to choose an engaging webinar topic
- How to pitch a product at the end of your webinar with confidence
- How to promote your webinar — including one wildly effective method for getting more attendees
- My favorite webinar software and how to try it for free (or just click my affiliate link here for the trial!)
- And more!
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Making Money With Webinars – Podcast Episode Audio
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How To Make Money With Webinars – Episode 12 Transcript
I still remember the webinar I attended that made me decide that webinars were something I also needed to be doing. It was about growing your Instagram, and the information was super clear and actionable.
By the end of the presentation, I literally couldn’t help but hand over my credit card details and buy the woman’s $300 Instagram course I was so impressed by her teaching style and content.
Now I know some people get weird about webinars and how a product is pitched at the end, but this is how I think about it:
- A webinar allows you to help and attract your ideal audience — as in, the people who would be interested in your paid product
- A webinar allows you to grow a targeted email list — as a webinar is usually also an email opt-in (and truly one of the best opt-in freebie ideas you can choose!)
- A webinar allows your audience to get to know you and gives them a taste of your teaching style
- And in my opinion, webinars are fun!
The key is to actually have a webinar where people get something out of it even if they don’t purchase. In this scenario, people usually don’t mind the pitch, because you’ve helped them even before they’ve given you money.
It’s when the webinar is 30 minutes of bragging, 10 minutes of content, and 30 minutes of pitching that people feel tricked.
Free Travel Blogger Resource Library
We’ll dive more into a successful webinar structure in a bit, but first, I want to direct your attention to the show notes where I’ve shared a link to my free Travel Blogger Resource Library.
Inside you’ll snag access to 30+ resources from cheat sheets to workbooks to video tutorials that can help truly turn your blog into a profitable business.
I’m all about implementation and I really want to make sure you don’t just listen to the episode and forget about it, but that you actually use what I share to make your blogging life easier.
My Webinar Story
Now, I want to start off by saying it took me about a year to work up the nerve to actually host a webinar.
I’d run free challenges before, but when it came to webinars I was afraid of everything — if people would like it, if people would be mad about the pitch at the end, if the tech would fail. That last one was probably my biggest fear.
But then I hosted my first webinar.
I practiced a ton, tested the software, got everything set up in the software early so I had time to ask WebinarJam — my webinar software provider — any questions that came up.
And quick aside, I’m also an affiliate of WebinarJam and have a link to try them out for free. You can click here for that.
Anyway, I just really prepared so I would feel confident. I also gave myself time to promote the heck out of the webinar so that I could actually get some butts in seats and make all that hard work worth it.
When it was time to start the webinar I felt energized!
The more I spoke and the more people interacted in the chat, the more confident I felt — even through the pitch. And imagine how good it felt when I actually had people purchasing through the webinar.
Interestingly, I don’t think I’ve ever hosted a webinar where there were no purchases. This is a wildly powerful strategy when done right.
That being said, there are some definite do’s and don’ts that I’ve learned along the way. Because I’ve also made a number of mistakes that I’ll share with you.
Okay, so let’s start with the do’s. Here is what you should do to host an incredible webinar:
Tip #1: Choose a webinar topic that would attract people who would benefit from your product.
Hosting a webinar is one of the best ways to validate a course idea or product concept; however, it needs to be targeted to work.
If you’re creating and selling an online course on travel hacking you don’t want to teach a webinar on Pinterest marketing.
If a course is what you plan to pitch, you might consider using a lesson or module as your webinar.
You want to just make sure it’s all very targeted.
Tip #2: Make sure webinar attendees benefit whether they purchase or not.
While you’ll want to save your secret sauce or top hack for the buyers, those who attend should leave feeling helped in some way.
So if you promise to teach three incredible travel photography tips, make sure that attendees truly get three incredible travel photography tips.
It may seem counterintuitive to give away the goods for free, but it’s more like giving away a sample. If it’s really good people will want more; however, if it’s a waste of time people will assume your paid offer is, too.
An example of this tip would be my webinar on how to become a travel blogger and make money, which shows creators how to increase their blogging income step-by-step.
Tip #3: Consider collaboration when hosting a webinar.
Now I teach a ton of webinars by myself, but I also love collaborating with affiliate partners to co-host webinars. If you’re wondering where to promote affiliate links, this is a great strategy.
This could be an affiliate that offers a product or service, brands or other creators, as long as what is being offered is beneficial to your audience.
For instance, I co-hosted a webinar with content creator Anastasia Blogger, who sells one of my favorite Pinterest courses.
I also co-hosted a webinar with ConvertKit — an email marketing platform — about how to grow your email list.
By the way:Pro tip: Hosting a #webinar with an affiliate partner is a great way to get more attendees while growing your #BloggingIncome! #TPTBPodcast
While these partners took care of the product as well as any special bonuses to entice sales, I promoted the webinar to my audience and we used my affiliate link for the checkout process.
It’s a win for me with affiliate income and being able to empower my audience, a win for my partners as they make sales, and a win for my audience as they learn new strategies while getting access to quality products and special bonuses.
Seriously, collaboration is a great way to grow your blog!
Tip #4: Use webinar software.
This isn’t required, but in my experience, it saves a lot of time and hassle.
And if you’re wondering how to set up a webinar this will make it a lot easier and more intuitive.
I’ve personally tried to sort of glue together different platforms to create a free webinar, but it never felt as professional as I wanted it to. Then I started using WebinarJam — a paid webinar software platform — and the experience was a lot easier.
You don’t need any other tool aside for WebinarJam to host a professional-looking webinar with landing pages, webinar rooms, slides, videos, polls, a chatbox, sales buttons, countdown timers, live sales counts, automated emails and replay sends, analytics, and injections in your presentation, which is helpful, for instance, if you want to offer a bonus only to those who stay until the end of the live webinar.
Basically everything, and they even have a testing environment so you can practice your webinar beforehand.
Tip #5: Want to host the perfect webinar? Use a step-by-step format.
I love hearing inspiring TEDx-style talks; however, most people attending a webinar are really looking for actionable advice.
In my opinion, the best way to help people take action is to share a step-by-step formula that will help them reach a certain goal or even a milestone on the way toward a goal.What is your best tip for hosting a #FreeWebinar? Here are 10 tips + 3 mistakes to avoid! #BloggingTips
So if your webinar is teaching people how to find mistake airline fares, you don’t want to just spend 45 minutes talking about how you use a certain app to find fares and how you’ve flown New York to Tokyo for $50.
No, you want to share your story to show why you’re the person to teach this webinar for about 10 minutes, and then you want to say something like “Do you want to be able to do this, too? Then let’s dive in. Step #1…” and then really make it clear so that people can replicate what you’ve been able to accomplish.
Tip #6: Host your webinar live — at least in the beginning.
Nowadays people actually host live webinars so infrequently that just the act of you being live to teach is going to be special and valuable.
No joke, I’ll have attendees test me. They’ll say something like “If this is really live then say a certain word.”
Along with being able to connect with your audience, doing the webinar live also allows you to better understand how you’re helping your community and what they still need to know. H
Honestly, you can get a lot of information from these live events by seeing what questions people ask. You can choose whether to address these questions by revamping the webinar content for future sessions, or maybe they are best addressed within your paid product to make it as robust as possible.
Personally, I love keeping a spreadsheet with all of the questions, DMs, emails — just things people are asking me. This way I can better understand the needs of my community.
This helps me create truly valuable blog posts, social shares, opt-in freebies, and, of course, products.
Tip #7: Understand how to present a webinar and practice your transitions.
In the beginning of this episode, I mentioned a simple webinar formula.
To help you better understand how to present a webinar I’m going to just expand on it here.Want to #MakeMoneyBlogging? Hosting free webinars is a great strategy. Bonus: In this episode of #TPTBPodcast, @jessonajourney shares a powerful webinar template!
Of course, you can feel free to get creative and stray, but this is what I’ve found works really well:
Start with an introduction.
Before I share my slides I like to show my face, say hello, and ask everyone to share where they’re from. Again, this helps me show that the webinar is live.
Also, it gives people time to join without missing out on the actual webinar content.
From there, I will do the following:
- One slide sharing what attendees will learn during the webinar — essentially getting them excited for what is to come.
- A few slides helping them realize if they’re in the right place. For instance, you might say “You’re in the right place if you crave clear, actionable strategies for growing an engaged community.”
- About 10 minutes of sharing my before and after story. Basically you want your attendees to see themselves as your before — so that they realize it’s possible to reach that after story — since you’re proof of that!
- After that, I like to have a few slides that let them imagine this after story as their reality. For instance, you might say something like “Now I want you to take a moment and just imagine a life where you no longer feel like your amazing content isn’t even being read by anyone.”
- From there you want to transition into at least 30 minutes of pure teaching content. You might say something like “If this all sounds good, let’s dive into the strategy.”
Now after the teaching content is over is when it gets a bit tricky for most people, as this is when you’ll dive into the pitch.
You might feel super confident and excited about teaching, but asking people to buy your product makes you nervous so you start tripping up your words or talking really fast through the pitch.
But here is what you need to remember:
By placing high-quality products in front of your audience — products that truly help them — you are helping them. You are helping to make their lives better.
So instead of thinking, “Ick, I don’t want to ask people for money” think “I know my paid course will really help them reach their goals and I can’t wait to show them how!”
This is one of the top ways to monetize a blog.
Pro tip with the pitch:
Whether pitching physical or digital products, really make the benefits of the product clear, not just the features. A feature is what is physically included. The benefit, on the other hand, is how the product and these features can change their lives.
You might then say something like “The course comes with one live coaching call each month so you never have to waste time searching Google for answers to your questions.” In this case, the monthly coaching call is the feature, while not having to waste time is a benefit.
After the pitch, I’ll then provide a bonus to everyone who stayed until the end
By the way, this is where WebinarJam comes in handy as I just have to click a button to share it.
And finally, I’ll end with a 15-minute Q&A.
Tip #8: Offer special webinar bonuses.
Again, I like to offer a bonus to everyone who stays until the end of the webinar — as in, until after I pitch the product and we get to the final Q&A portion.
I also like to offer a special bonus to people who purchase during the webinar. This can really help you increase sales during a product launch campaign!
Or if your webinar is part of a longer launch, you might offer a bonus to those who purchase during the webinar or during the webinar replay.
This just entices people to take action and rewards them for taking part in your webinar.
Tip #9: Have questions prepared for the Q&A.
Maybe you’re worried that people won’t ask questions at the end.
You can relieve that anxiety by having a few ready to go to fill that void.
You might say something like “Feel free to start typing your questions into the chatbox. While you’re typing, I just wanted to answer a few common questions I’ve gotten from the community.”
Tip #10: Give yourself enough time to promote your webinar.
If you’re wondering how to promote a webinar, here are some suggestions:
- To your email list (with some email storytelling woven in!)
- In a smartbar at the top of your website
- In relevant blog posts
- Through social media ads (and if you’re wondering how to use social media for marketing, this is a great way!)
- In your email signature
- Through Pinterest marketing
- On social media and in your social media bios
- In Facebook groups where appropriate
- Have a Facebook Ads for bloggers strategy and invest some money into social media advertising
- Ask friends to share and offer to share something on theirs in return.
I’m also a fan of a plugin called ConvertPlus (affiliate link) for adding timed pop-ups, slide-ins, and smartbars that you can customize to show to people based on what they read.
Okay, on that note, let’s chat about a few webinar mistakes. Some of these mistakes I’ve made myself, and others I’ve seen others make.
Mistake #1: Letting doubt hinder success.
Now my first webinar did well; I did make sales. But it definitely didn’t have as many attendees as it could have.
After some deep self-reflection, I realize that it was negative self-talk that was largely to blame.
Before this first webinar, there was a real fear that things wouldn’t go as planned. I almost didn’t want a lot of people there because I was so nervous, but then as I got going with the webinar I wished there were more people.
Be honest with yourself about this negative self-talk. Try to pinpoint what situations trigger it; for instance, when you’re thinking about taking on a big challenge or when something goes wrong.
From there, you want to consider what a more realistic or optimistic way to look at the situation is. How can you look at the situation differently?
For example, in regards to webinars, your negative self-talk might say, “Well, if I don’t try, I won’t fail”; however, a more realistic way to think about it could be “If I don’t try I’ve already failed and I’ll never see how this strategy can help me grow.”
Mistakes #2: Being afraid to give too much away so you hold too much back.
I totally get this.
As I said before, this may seem weird to give information away for free when you’re likely pitching a product related to it.Don't be afraid to GIVE to your audience in your #FreeWebinar! Empower them. Inspire them. Help them. That is how you'll build a community. #TPTBPodcast
But again, you’re not giving away your top-secret strategy in the webinar. You still want people to feel like “Wow, this guy/gal was so helpful in the free webinar. I can’t wait to see what they share in the paid version of their product.”
Mistake #3: Not sending reminder emails.
Personally, I send five emails to my webinar attendees. These are all automated in Webinarjam, and they include:
- The welcome email they get immediately
- A reminder 24 hours before. In this one, I like to really drive home what they’ll get out of attending live. I know people sign up for webinars and then they’re like “Ah, I’m so busy!” so this email is really about saying “Hey, I know you’re thinking you’re busy, but here is why it is going to be so worth attending live.” Remind them about the takeaways, about the live bonus, remind them that by investing an hour of their time into learning they will save time and grow in the long-run.
- A reminder one hour before
- A reminder 15 minutes before
- The webinar replay that gets sent after the webinar. This email also includes a link to my product and a recap of any bonuses.
All right, I’m going to stop here. Honestly, I’m pretty obsessed with webinars and I probably could talk about them all day. But I feel like that was quite a bit.
If you still have questions about webinars feel free to leave them in the comments below or email me at [email protected].
Also, the best way to actually catch one of my webinars — I do host them a lot and I promote webinars by others — is to get on my email list. And the best way to get on my email list is to grab access to my Free Travel Blogger Resource Library.
Finally, make sure to subscribe to the Profitable Travel Blogger Podcast on iTunes so you get notified when future episodes publish, too.
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