Webinars are every association’s member engagement dream. They attract interested members, teach them valuable information, and keep them coming back for more. But they also can be used for much more- including new member onboarding.
According to the Content Marketing Institute, over 60% of marketers are incorporating webinars into their content marketing strategy. On top of that, a recent study from ReadyTalk found 20%-40% of all surveyed webinar attendees turned into qualified leads over time. That’s right, webinars can actually attract and retain your association’s target audience.
So, how exactly do you tap into the potential of webinars in order to increase your overall membership?
Luckily for you, we’ve got the answers. With other associations paving the way and setting positive examples in webinar onboarding, you can learn the correct way to start acquiring new members with your webinar content in no time.
Let’s take a look at a few different tips you can incorporate into your webinars to use them to onboard new members. With our tips, you’ll have a surefire way to get audience members signed on as brand new members.
Using webinars to communicate
Webinars are a great form of content for a multitude of reasons, but one of the most important parts of webinars boils down to their format: Video.
With video content being both valuable and highly sought after by audiences, webinars give you the opportunity to connect with new members through a form of content they’re looking to consume. It allows them to visually connect with your association, learning about the next step as members through both listening to your lecture and adding in visual stimulation to help further their education.
The International Coach Federation (ICF) has seen success onboarding new members by using their webinars as video communication. Using their webinars strictly for onboarding members, they can speak directly to members via videoconferencing and get them on the right path.
Using webinars as a way to video conference with your audience allows you to get on a much more personal level with your audience. If you’re a larger association with a wide audience, you may not have many chances to get to know those individuals looking to join your organization. But by using webinars to invite audiences in, you can get the same type of communication and audience engagement that smaller organizations have.
Think of using webinars to onboard as a way to buckle down on personal interaction and communication with your brand new members.
The cure to customer service
Webinars also help tackle any customer service struggles your association may face.
With your membership numbers increasing, keeping up with customer inquiries and complaints can be tough. You want to make sure everyone is happy and enjoying their time with your association, but there’s only so much your staff can cover at one time.
But by onboarding members through webinars, you have the opportunity to set them up for satisfaction from the get go.
By getting your new members together to participate in your onboarding webinar, you’ll be able to connect with them and welcome them to all sides and opportunities that your association has to offer. You can effectively show them the ropes, mitigating any questions or confusion they might have when navigating things on their own.
ICF’s webinar use in onboarding has helped them acquire a higher retention rate. By recording their live onboarding and having those who couldn’t attend watch online, they saw their first-year member retention increased by 6%. Your association could see similar results if you use your onboarding webinar to keep customer service as a priority.
As a supplement, you can keep your onboarding webinar up on your website and available to members at all times. This way, if new members forget information or are struggling figuring out a certain feature, they can revisit your webinar whenever they’d like. Not only does this give them access to a helpful resource, it can help cut down questions or complaints that your staff will have to work to fix.
Encourage questions and follow up with members
When hosting your association’s onboarding webinar, you should always encourage your new members to speak up when something you present to them is confusing or out of place.
Onboarding new members can sometimes be overwhelming. There’s a lot of new information to cover, a lot of benefits to introduce, and a lot of welcoming steps to take. Therefore, new members may not understand everything you cover.
By having this webinar connection, you can have your participants write in questions or interact with you through the videoconference any time they have a question. This will allow you to provide clarity and leave new members feeling confident when making first moves with your association. It could also help them feel more comfortable reaching out and engaging with your staff in the future.
Similarly, be sure to follow up with your new members after they view your onboarding webinar. While all of this information presented to them is great, they may not know what to do with it once the webinar is over.
Send out an email providing members with next steps and contact information. You can direct them to signing into their member account, send them content offers you think they might enjoy, or present them with your event schedule to get them excited to attend. Whatever you’d like your new members to do, following up with them can direct them to the right place.
Onboarding new members can take a turn for the best with the use of webinars. Consider putting webinars into your onboarding strategy and see how you could have the potential to increase member retention rates over time.