Last week, I had the pleasure of facilitating a webinar on virtual training with Mike and Madi, titled Using Webinars to Train Your People and Grow Your Practice. We covered the NASBA requirements for granting CPE in the Group Internet Based category, gave examples of how firms are providing CPE-eligible virtual training to their professionals, and provided actionable steps for improving and promoting these offerings. Today, I’ll be recapping a few of the tips and tricks we covered during the webinar for successfully marketing your training to your target audience.
If you’re a GAAPology subscriber, then you know this is not the first time we’ve written about webinars! In fact, it’s a popular topic for us. Since our webinar journey started back in 2018, we have learned a ton about facilitating quality webinars – from choosing an engaging topic, to technical set-up tips, and more, and we’re sharing all of our advice with you along the way! Check out these posts for additional webinar-related content:
- Learn from our Experience: 5 Tips for Running a Successful Webinar (May 2019)
- 5 Reasons Why our Webinars are Hotter than Hansel! (May 2020)
- 5 Strategies to Take your Webinar from Good to Great (December 2020)
- Webinars: These 5 Tips can Make a World of Difference (March 2021)
- What's the Cost of Tailored Accounting Webinars? (April 2021)
1. Partner with other thought leaders in your industry (or related industries) to maximize your reach
Our largest webinar had nearly 1,000 attendees, and we even held an encore presentation so more people could attend! We didn’t get there all on our own. Throughout the past couple of years, we have held several webinars in partnership with Parker+Lynch, a subsidiary of one of the world’s largest staffing firms. With an estimated annual revenue of $62 million, Parker+Lynch has a larger network of leads than little ol' GAAP Dynamics! By partnering with them to offer free CPE training on relevant topics, we’re able to leverage a much wider audience (and thus gain lots of new qualified leads!) than if we had marketed and facilitated these webinars all on our own. As you can see in the image below, our contact count spikes up during the marketing phase of these webinars!
2. Offer free CPE (if you’re qualified to do so, of course!)
While we’d love to believe that thousands of people attend our webinars every year just because they love to see our smiling faces, that’s certainly not the only reason! By offering periodic free, CPE-eligible webinars throughout the year, you’re certain to get a much greater rate of registration than if CPE credits were not part of the deal. But, of course, there’s a difference between registration rate and attendance rate, which brings me to my next point…
3. Create a 4-week marketing plan and stick to it
According to GoToWebinar’s The Big Book of Webinar Stats, promoting your webinar at least 4 weeks in advance of the training date results in 12% more registrations. Even though you’re starting early, you still need to finish strong! Also from GoToWebinar:
We also discovered that 59% of attendees register in the week leading up to the event, and 17% of those register on the day of the webinar. This means you should make sure to schedule reminders and “last chance” promotional messages to your prospects right up until game day.
While you definitely want to keep targeting members of your audience who haven’t yet signed up for your webinar, don’t forget to send a reminder or two to those who have already registered! This is one of the keys to ensuring your attendance rate is as close as possible to your registration rate.
4. Use all the free marketing channels at your disposal
About that marketing plan…what channels do you have to market on? Chances are you have most, if not all, of the following available:
- Email (According to The Big Book of Webinar Stats, 57% of webinar registrations come from email)
- Blog or newsletter
- Social media
To promote our webinars, we often write “tee up” blog posts to get our subscribers interested in registering, and we include Calls-to-action that hyperlink to the registration page. We also plug the training on all of our social media channels, we send emails to our contacts, and we create hyperlinked banners for the homepage of our website. The more we get the message out there, the more registrations we reel in!
5. Don’t forget about your attendees after the webinar!
The point of these free trainings is to increase your number of contacts, with the hope that some of them will one day become loyal customers. You increase your chances of this happening by continuing to market relevant content to your attendees long after the webinar is over! By organizing your contacts into lists based on which content they have shown interest in (what types and topics of your content do they consume most often?), you can set up automated workflows in your customer relationship management (CRM) software to keep delighting your contacts and move them further down your marketing funnel to the eventual purchasing stage.
Missed the webinar, but want more tips? Watch the Simulated Live (recorded) version here! As we mentioned during the training, we can’t offer CPE for watching the recording – but we can convert webinars into CPE-compliant self-study courses if what you’ve read has piqued your interest!
Want to see us live? We have another webinar coming up next Thursday! Join Chris and Rachel as they give an overview of ASC 740 Income Taxes. Sign up here! Don’t forget, if you’re a client of GAAP Dynamics, you get in for free – keep an eye on your inbox this week for your registration code!
About GAAP Dynamics
We’re a DIFFERENT type of accounting training firm. We don’t think of training as a “tick the box” exercise, but rather an opportunity to empower your people to help them make the right decisions at the right time. Whether it’s U.S. GAAP training, IFRS training, or audit training, we’ve helped thousands of professionals since 2001. Our clients include some of the largest accounting firms and companies in the world. As lifelong learners, we believe training is important. As CPAs, we believe great training is vital to doing your job well and maintaining the public trust. We want to help you understand complex accounting matters and we believe you deserve the best training in the world, regardless of whether you work for a large, multinational company or a small, regional accounting firm. We passionately create high-quality training that we would want to take. This means it is accurate, relevant, engaging, visually appealing, and fun. That’s our brand promise. Want to learn more about how GAAP Dynamics can help you? Let’s talk!
This post is published to spread the love of GAAP and provided for informational purposes only. Although we are CPAs and have made every effort to ensure the factual accuracy of the post as of the date it was published, we are not responsible for your ultimate compliance with accounting or auditing standards and you agree not to hold us responsible for such. In addition, we take no responsibility for updating old posts, but may do so from time to time.