Category:Writer Strategy Skill Level: All Levels Webinar Recorded: September 24, 2020
Social media platforms are always changing. But one thing that’s pretty consistent is the social media habits of people who have used these platforms to build a strong following. And for writers, there’s none better to watch than current best-selling authors.
Take a look at 7 current best-selling authors to see what they are doing, and where they are doing it. And we’ll explore what they are doing that’s driving their success.
In this session, you’ll learn:
What platforms best-selling authors are most active on
How they set up their profiles to drive results
What kinds of posts they’re sharing to get engagement
How to build your social media strategy using these same habits
What tools can you use to help you manage your social media
Upon completion of this webinar, you’ll have a plan for how to build your social media strategy. You’ll learn how you can reach more people with your message and promote your writing (without feeling all promote-y).
The first step in optimizing your website for SEO is knowing exactly what you should be optimizing it for. And that’s where a good SEO Keyword Research report can help you. But it’s not enough just to have the information, you need to know how you can apply it.
Using information like search volume (how often a term is used on search engines each month), competitive density, click potential, and other data can help you discover the opportunities that will drive the most traffic to your website.
In this session, you’ll learn:
How we discover the best keywords people are actually using to find you (and your competitors)
How to identify the best opportunities for you to drive the most traffic to your website
What you can do to optimize your website for these terms
How you can use your blog to build a stronger base for the keyword terms you’re going after
Upon completion of this webinar, you’ll have everything you need to build a great foundation on the best keywords. This will give you the information you need to build a strong strategy for getting found on the search engines.
And regardless of whether you get this Technical SEO Audit from us, or if you get the same information from another source, this is the first big step in improving the SEO for your website. Your website needs to have a strong technical SEO foundation before you can expect to rank on search engines.
A good audit can reveal and prioritize errors and other issues that are bringing you down, and give you a roadmap for how to improve.
In this session, you’ll learn:
How to understand the information in a Technical SEO Audit
Which types of issues are going to have the biggest impact on your website’s performance (and SEO)
How to implement fixes for the most common issues in a WordPress website
Upon completion of this webinar, you’ll have what you need to get your website on a strong foundation. And nothing is more important to your foundation if you’re hoping to improve your search engine rankings and get more traffic to your website.
I’ve always been a big believer in the power of webinars! Not only do I enjoy learning from them, but we’ve also been building a library of webinar content of our own for years. And with recent shifts to moving more digital, webinars can be a great tool to help you expand the reach of your business. But the average business owner has no idea how to create a webinar.
So you know when one of my favorite resources, SEMrush, hosts a Twitter chat on the subject, I had to be there. The SEMrush webinars are some of the best out there, and they’ve helped me stay on the cutting edge of digital marketing for several years now. And having their Head of Global Marketing, Olga Andrienko, and their Head of Video Content, Anton Shulke, on the chat was a huge bonus. They are the real deal!
And because the focus of this chat was so valuable, I thought I’d share the highlights of the conversation here. I also thought it would be a good place to add a few bonus tips and resources if you’re exploring how to create a webinar for yourself.
Here’s the conversation…
Q1. Free or paid: How do you decide whether to charge for your online conference or webinar? What other ways have you found to monetize online events?
A1. I typically do FREE webinars focusing on very broad or micro-topics. They are a great source for lead-gen.
And then I like to build on deeper dives into those topics for use in e-courses for PAID content. Those are typically bigger build-outs of topics.#SEMrushchathttps://t.co/FFd7ShW1oL
The big thing with how you use them is determining what your goal is for them. Generally, free webinars can be great for lead generation and nurturing. But there’s also a sales opportunity for deeper and more exclusive content too. Here’s what Olga and Anton had to say about it too…
A1: Free webinars will get you more leads, paid ensures people show up. We are more committed to something we’ve invested in. In the current situation I’d suggest free webinars. You’ll be shooting yourself in the foot if you arrange something people have to pay for. #semrushchathttps://t.co/mN7tA8lMNk
A1.2 Probably now when there is no conferences, paid online events will start to appear. But probably it will be other idea: monetize the event, not get it "more important" With exponential growth of total number of online events, that won't be easy to exploit#semrushchat
I definitely agree with the idea that with a slowdown with in-person conferences, many are going to find ways to do more online. This certainly represents some great opportunity to innovate and reach more people with premium content.
Q1 Recap. As an online event organizer, the first thing you have to decide on is whether you want to make it paid or free and what are the additional ways to monetize your event 💡 Below you can find some ideas gathered by the #SEMrushChat community members 👇 pic.twitter.com/YrJUPMDecZ
Q2. What platforms and software are best for hosting online events?
A2. I use YouTube Live for the main video delivery tool, but then focus on having a landing page on my #WordPress website where I do registration and embed the video feed. I use @hubspot as my CRM for registration forms. All simple setup, and integrated lead mgmt.#SEMrushchathttps://t.co/lxS3w7zC58
Specifically, I use the OBS Studio software to manage what my live webinar video feed looks like, but YouTube Live can be broadcast with just a webcam. This can also be accomplished with your mobile phone and Facebook Live. You’re really pretty unlimited with options for how you broadcast a live event online.
A2: We use YouTube, but it’s not the perfect solution. We know who has registered for the webinar, but not much else. Benefits are bigger exposure and appearing in YouTube search after the webinar is finished #semrushchathttps://t.co/kKK6aKIBut
A2.1 Before choosing the platform you have to answer The Question: why are you doing this webi? Do you want to collect as much info from audience as possible or you want to make your event as easy to accesses as possible There are tones of software on the market#semrushchathttps://t.co/Fu2vjkDjuy
Ultimately, the software and platform you use will depend on your goals. If lead capture is important, then that needs to be part of how you set it up. It doesn’t need to be complex, and often the simplest way to get started is to get the registration done by creating a landing page for the event on your own website. Then you can communicate with that email list as the event approaches. This way you can point them to anywhere you plan to run the broadcast.
Q2 Recap. One of the biggest headaches of hosting an online event is to choose the right platform & software 💆The #SEMrushChat community is here to walk you through the best ones 👇 pic.twitter.com/sZmDKoij7y
Q3. Checklist: How do you ensure the quality of the stream?
A3. My checklist is:
🤜 Internet service at 500/500 MB 🤜 Directly connected to modem via ethernet cable (not wi-fi) 🤜 Close down non-essential software on computer during stream 🤜 Good equipment (camera/mic) … i love my @rodemics#SEMrushchathttps://t.co/YCJ3Ju22yJ
I saw some chat going on about connecting via wi-fi. And the only time I would suggest that is when you’re conducting some sort of live stream from your mobile phone. But if you’re planning to create a webinar a little more formally, then run it from your desktop and make sure you’re directly connected (if possible). I would also suggest that if you’re just getting started, then don’t sweat it with getting lots of fancy equipment. If you have a webcam with a mic, then you can do it. As you get into it over time, then consider upgrading to improve quality and performance.
A3: Webinar essentials: Good light – people need to see the speaker HD camera – no pixelated images Invest in good microphone Ensure your guests also have all the necessary equipment and don’t be shy to check #semrushchathttps://t.co/XjduEdWCtg
A3: One not so obvious but very important point! Professional background. No kitchen mess, no bedroom – nothing personal in the background. Your online conference should feel professional. #semrushchathttps://t.co/XjduEdWCtg
A3.2 Audio is more important than video! Never use laptop's mics, NEVER! Webinar is not an opera, just headset will do. But it needs testing. Test it a few days before the webi. If it is not perfect, push people to fix it. Not perfect test – disaster webinar#semrushchat
A3.4 Presentation, if your speaker using slides, make sure they are in "YouTube" format (even if you are using different platform) Visibility over elegance If slides are not readable on small screen people will leave (rightly so) Bigger font, less text#semrushchat
I definitely appreciate the focus on the setting you use when you create a webinar. Things like lighting, background, etc all can make a huge difference in how your broadcast comes off to a viewer. The big thing here is to show that you cared enough to put the effort into creating a good environment for your viewers.
Q4. Self-hosted or including guests: What makes some formats more successful than others?
A4. I've done both. It's usually nice to have someone else on with me, but I haven't seen a difference in goals met when I do it solo. Plus it's easier to manage just doing them by myself. #SEMrushchathttps://t.co/zlWDMGvBhf
Really, the bottom line for me here is that adding more people to the webinar broadcast (remotely) adds an additional layer of complexity in pulling it off. It’s not super difficult, but it is an extra layer. And ultimately, I haven’t seen the difference in goal performance when I have others on with me or not. So I tend to just keep it simple, and create my events. But that doesn’t mean I’ll always do them solo.
A4: If company has a spokesperson, you can host a webinar without external guests. But nobody wants to listen to one person forever, no matter how great they are. Bring in guests every once in a while #semrushchathttps://t.co/AkhPNXHb07
A4: One host and one speaker is the most popular format. Not only in video, but in audio format too. Try inviting one main speaker and several guests for a panel discussion #semrushchathttps://t.co/AkhPNXHb07
This is really another one that depends on your goals. I can also say from my experience that it’s difficult to keep people’s attention as a solo presenter for longer periods of time. If I’m on an hour-long webinar, then having multiple people in a conversation certainly helps. But I’ve been experimenting with doing shorter 20-30 minute webinar sessions, which is more manageable for the viewer when I’m going solo. But the key here is to test some variations, and measure how they perform. The data will tell you what you can reasonably do.
Q4 Recap. Self-hosted or including guests: what format should you choose and what makes some formats more successful than others? 🤔 Check out this quick recap to learn ⬇️#SEMrushChatpic.twitter.com/0YCcyu0pg3
When measuring success, things like the number of registrations I get tell me how helpful the topics are. And success is mostly determined by the number of inbound leads it generates. I’m not looking for instant sales either. But the inbound lead gets some follow-up and an offer for a free consultation. If they don’t bite right away, I don’t sweat it. They end up on my “webinar club” mailing list and get notifications of upcoming webinars. And I’ve seen some of these people reach out to us after viewing several webinars asking us for help with their projects. Ultimately it’s a long-game, and then just continuing to work my email list over time.
A5.2 Talking about feedback We are extremely interested in speakers’, panelists’, hosts’ feedback We are doing events not only for the audience (I know it sounds heretical 👺) "Pleasing" participants is also a goal We DO want to convert them to brand advocates#semrushchat
I also look at the long-term usefulness of each webinar. I evaluate how much I direct people to webinars in other ongoing sales and support conversations. Even old, recorded webinars carry a great deal of value over time as I support the conversations we have with clients and potential clients. That’s not to mention how we can trim out sections of the video to repurpose for some short-form social media posts. I love repurposing content!
Q6. Social media, paid promotion, third party platforms, affiliate network… How do you promote your online event or webinar?
A6. We keep everything pretty simple…
🤜 New webinar email updates to all previous registrants 🤜 Monthly #TBT webinar feature to all previous registrants 🤜 Social Media (primarily FB and LinkedIn) 🤜 Some targeted social media ads#SEMrushchathttps://t.co/MrLmaVUe8E
Promotion is mostly about two things for us. First, nurturing the existing Webinar Club email list. The people on that list who are already clients appreciate the expertise and perspective we share. And people who aren’t clients (yet) get more exposure to our brand as one they can trust as experts in the field. Second, social media, boosting/advertising posts help us get exposure to new potential audiences with very targeted interests.
A6. Ensure that you invest money into paid social media ads. Would be great to work with lookalike audiences, that would lower down the acquisition cost and ensure you have relevant audience on your webinar. #semrushchathttps://t.co/5KVSUVoeEj
A5 Email is still The Best webinar promo! Getting speakers and panelist to send their email is a great way to extend webi audience. We also experimenting with WebinarChatBot#semrushchatshttps://t.co/TPddsui4my
And I love Olga’s point about lookalike audiences (in Facebook Ads). I can take my existing client email lists and my Webinar Club email lists and have Facebook target other people who are like these people. It’s a great way to focus on an audience who is most likely to engage with what you’re offering.
Final Thoughts On How To Create a Webinar (or Other Online Expert Event)
If you’re focusing on generating leads for your business and are a subject matter expert on a specific topic, then running a webinar can be a great tool in your marketing plan. Great webinars can help you engage with potential (and existing) customers in real-time, and they can build your brand and credibility. Contrary to what you might believe, they aren’t too difficult to pull off! However, you should have a plan for how you’re going to promote your webinar and capture the people who have an interest in the topics you plan to discuss.
Do you need help figuring out how to get something like this implemented? Need someone to help you brainstorm topics or a plan for how you move forward with this? Let us know! Grab some (free) time to talk with us, or hit us up in the online chat here on the website. We’ll get you on the right path to creating your own webinars and using them to generate leads.
Category:Writer Strategy Skill Level: All Levels Webinar Recorded: April 14, 2020
So you haven’t been blogging much lately. Maybe it’s even been a year or two (or more) since you’ve written. But you’ve been getting that itch to dust off that dormant blog and get back into it. Something is stirring up that passion you once had to write. Well, you’re not alone! Long-time blogger, author, speaker Dan King has been there. And after a long hiatus, he’s getting back into the blogging groove.
But starting to blog again after a long break isn’t as simple as just logging in to write a new post. Technical things in your website have likely changed a bit. Your subscribers and social media followers may have forgotten you exist. Simply coming out cold is the wrong thing to do. You’ll basically need to re-launch your blog.
In this session, you’ll learn:
How to evaluate your website design to ensure it works for your new direction
What you can do to warm up your social media followers
How you can leverage your old content to inspire conversations again
What you should do with your email subscribers to re-engage them
How to find a good writing routine and build content that will expand your reach
Upon completion of this webinar, you’ll have everything you need to revive that dormant blog! You likely have a great asset just sitting there with your existing content, and with a few simple strategies, you can get your writing in front of more readers (again). And you should be able to gain more traction more quickly by following these techniques.
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