9 powerful methods for start-ups to attract more webinar participants

A webinar as part of your marketing strategy, is smart. The stats say so.

Actually, according to eMarketer, 66 per cent of marketers agree that webinars are the second most effective content marketing method.

Being a startup, it’s important to understand that successful webinars take a lot of effort to strategise, organise and host. One of the leading elements to getting the results you want, is to follow best practices, and to promote it well.

Now, before going ahead with the ideas in this article, it is imperative that you know the persona of your target audience, in order to promote the webinar to the right people, because what’s the use of going to all the trouble of setting up a webinar, but not attracting the right people?

For hosting, use a webinar solution like ClickMeeting because it makes life so much easier, and you can do so much more with it. For example, use the recorded webinar as a video for the added benefit of increasing traffic.

Let’s jump ahead to the nine powerful methods startups can use to get more registrants:

1. Cold emailing specific people

Cold emailing works and is one of the most effective methods of getting attention. But. You need to email the right people. An email to the receptionist of a company is not going to cut it. Using a combination of tools, identify people that fit your target persona, and use an email finder like Norbert to get email addresses. Don’t stop there though – strategise an email campaign to schedule five emails in total to the person, to ensure a higher response rate.

2. Promote your webinar for long enough

Avoid the mentality that “if you build it, they will come”. They will not. Especially if your business is still new and you don’t already have an email list. When you’ve just struck out, you need to work extra hard to get people to register. Strategise your promotional ideas and allow enough time to spread the news while aggressively marketing the webinar.

3. Advertise to custom audiences on Facebook

Only use Facebook – or any social media channel for that matter – if it’s where your target audience hang. If it is, use ‘custom audiences’ (you may need to learn how to use this function) to target the right people to whom to advertise your webinar.

4. Local promotion of the webinar

Depending on your business, you may want to network locally and hand out flyers to people that way. Find relevant events to attend and spread the news.

5. Make the webinar enticing to the right audience

Probably the greatest reason well marketed webinars flop, is because the topic – or how the topic is “sold” – is not effective. Promote the webinar to the right people, but also make the content about something those people truly care about. Make sure you deliver on your promise to be of value.

6. Hook up with a third party

If you’re a start-up, you are likely to achieve greater success by partnering with someone else for your first webinar, or maybe even the first few times. If you choose this route, find someone in your niche but who is not a direct competitor. Offer something of value in exchange, and see if they will also promote it to their audience.

7. Host it at the right time

The time of the webinar plays a big part in the number of attendees you’ll get. It’s difficult to say what day and time is best because it really depends on the niche you’re in, but other webinar hosts have suggested Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays, from mid-morning to mid-afternoon. If you can, offer various times that participants can pick, and that will give you a better understanding of the best days and times to hold it.

8. Add a call to action on blog posts and distribute them

Add blog posts as part of your webinar promotional strategy. Include a call to action on them, and then distribute the blog posts on social media. Also post to Facebook and LinkedIn groups, if of course, your audience frequents those sites.

9. Remind registrants a few hours before

Many marketers find that reminding participants a few hours before the webinar, increases attendance. It makes sense, because people sign up to attend a webinar and then forget about it. Very few enter the date in a calendar if they’re not prompted by the host to do so. It is your responsibility to make sure they remember. You could try using a text message to their mobile phone, email and on your social media accounts.


Planning a webinar requires a serious amount of effort, but you’ll also reap the bountiful rewards. In summary, use the following techniques to get more signups:

  1. Directly email specific people
  2. Do enough webinar promotion
  3. Use Facebook custom audiences to advertise
  4. Promote it locally
  5. Make the webinar sound like a must-have to the right audience
  6. Partner with someone
  7. Set the webinar for the right time and day
  8. Add a call to action on blog posts and distribute them to social media groups
  9. Remind participants a few hours prior to the start

Jon Sumner

Vivianne Halvorson

Experienced director of digital media with a demonstrated history of working in the publishing industry. Strong media and communication professional skilled in media sales, digital strategy, web development,...

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