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On-demand webinars vs. live webinars

Let's take a step back and list the main differences between on-demand webinars and live webinars. There are pros and cons, they are not meant for every use case and each of them should be used wisely.

The on-demand, by nature, is asynchronous. Meaning your attendees should not expect to get an answer right away if they ask a question. They should be in the same configuration as watching a YouTube video. This is why we recommend not to present this channel as if it were a live webinar. People will notice.

  • However, shameless plug: on Livestorm you can still have synchronous interactions with your on-demand attendees by adding your Intercom or Drift chat inside the webinar room.

On Livestorm you can still have synchronous interactions with your on-demand attendees by adding your Intercom or Drift chat inside the webinar room.

Because the on-demand webinar is asynchronous, it scales even better than a group session, it is also less personalized. For example, this may seem like Sales 101 but you should not treat your VIP leads with on-demand demo webinars.

You should not treat your VIP leads with on-demand demo webinars.

On the other hand, you will probably notice a better registration rate since it is less engaging: people can access it whenever they need, they do not have to interact with you, etc.

Finally, it is also less engaging for your team: host a webinar once and then let it live for ever! The cost of producing that webinar will decrease over time as you get more on-demand registrations.

To recap:

  • On-demand is not live and therefore less personalized than the live webinar
  • Find a way to fetch the questions asked during that on-demand webinar
  • Try not to push on-demand webinars to VIPs
  • On-demand webinars are less engaging which makes them a good additional touch points for lead nurturing for example
  • On-demand webinars are extremely scalable and cost-effective
on demand webinars

Top of the funnel on-demand webinars: increase awareness

Let's take the example of a software company that would be interested in implementing on-demand webinars. The company probably wonders where and when they should implement on-demand webinars.

The content

Let's look at the top of the marketing funnel. Like many SaaS companies, they produce a lot of content: blog posts, white papers, even maybe live webinars.

Live webinars are great for building awareness about your industry and expertise. Some of our customers already had great success, like Mailjet. If you had a lot of registrations for your live webinars, chances are that a lot of people will be interested in watching that replay, right?

So turn it into an on-demand webinar! Keep on generating awareness forever and build this evergreen piece of content.

Keep on generating awareness forever and build this evergreen piece of content.

If you think about it, you could apply the same framework to your white papers: which ones got the more downloads and views? Host a live webinar about it, repurpose that content, and then turn it into an on-demand. Easy.

Companies often produce a lot of valuable content that deserves more visibility: white papers are nice but they don't get the same amount of conversions or engagement.

Companies often produce a lot of valuable content that deserves more visibility: white papers are nice but they don't get the same amount of conversions or engagement.

Mid-funnel on-demand webinars: increase qualification

At the beginning of this post, I talked about cost efficiency and lead generation. It is true that VIP leads should have more important level of personalization. Again, Sales 101. Now, who then should watch my on-demand webinar?

Picture this: I have 10000 visitors on my website per month, if I offer to request a live 1:1 demo with 4% of them that's 400 demo requests to handle. Even though I don't hop on a call with each one of them because I have a workflow to exclude the ones I'm not interested in, I would still need to offer an alternative solution, right?

The process

Here's what you can do: grab your Ideal Customer Profile (ICP) and downgrade it to 2 other less qualified personas. An example based on company size, my ICP is 1000+ companies, I could then have two less qualified personas: 500-1000 and less than 500 employees.

Then, all you have to do is offer the right alternative for each of them: the first bucket gets a 1:1, the second bucket gets a live demo webinar, and the third one gets an on-demand. Bucket #2 and #3 could also get the on-demand. The important is that you have a qualification channel for each.

Finally, your CPL (cost per lead) will mechanically decrease as you get more registrations. So, not only you can redirect your less qualified leads and decrease their costs, you will also mechanically increase your efficiency on those VIP leads since you will spend more time on them.

Your CPL (cost per lead) will mechanically decrease as you get more registrations

The content

At this consideration stage, you should focus on the product, the billing, and the value you bring on the market.

For a software company, the on-demand content should focus on:

  • Features and use cases
  • Industries focus
  • Level of service and support
  • The business model

To recap, on-demand webinars will help you:

  • Nurture the less qualified leads
  • Offer an alternative to 1:1 demos
  • Reduce CAC and increase your sales conversion rate

Watch Livestorm on-demand demo webinar

Click on the link to register and watch our on-demand product demo.

Watch now

Bottom-funnel on-demand webinars: boost decision at scale

At the decision process stage, content will help you if they emphasize on key features or feedback from similar companies. Usually, at this stage, sales and marketing nurture those leads using sales deck or customer case studies.

Again, this is not something you should do with everyone. You can push an on-demand webinar to less qualified leads, in the form of an interview with a customer from a similar industry.

You can push to less qualified leads struggling with their decision an on-demand webinar of an interview with a customer from a similar industry.

Here's what Mention is doing for example: host live joint webinars as part of their customer success stories to talk about the customer usage. The webinar is extremely simple: just a simple interview.

You can then turn that webinar into an on-demand webinar and use that evergreen video customer story to convert leads down the funnel. Note that this on-demand webinar can also be used by your customer success team.

Post-funnel on-demand webinars: scale your customer success

Now that your lead has become a paid customer, they have been handed over to the account executives or the customer success team in order to train them.

The same logic applies: should they served an on-demand or a live 1:1 meeting or a mix of both. Here you should focus on the revenue generated by that customer as well as the projected revenue, this should dictate the channels you use in order to control your cost of support (COGS) and eventually control your margins.

You should focus on the revenue generated by that customer as well as the projected revenue, this should dictate the channels you use

The content

For the long tail customers (low revenue, high volume) push content that will help them get started: on-demand webinars are great for that. They are visual (you can actually see the product in action), evergreen, and cost-efficient.

For a software company, the on-demand content should focus on:

  • Features and the setup of the product, your goal is to push them in the activation funnel and make them check all the right boxes
  • Introduce them to the advanced features
  • Introduce them to the support offering: how to use the live chat, ticket system, the documentation etc.

Then each month or X period of time, you can host a live group session webinar to answer questions, present the roadmap, the latest features, do some live support and turn that live webinar into an on-demand.

Like this, you will create a database of FAQ that people can access to keep up to date with your solution.

Conclusion

On-demand webinars are your best friend to scale your business and handle a big volume of customers and leads. If you're interested in an example you could watch ours here. Also, if you're ever wondering how to do it on Livestorm you can check this post.


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