There are many ways to sell your online course, and I will review one of the most effective ones – selling an online course with a webinar sales funnel.
What is a webinar sales funnel?
It is a few-steps marketing tool to sell online products.
In simple words, we attract people to a webinar, where they will have a chance to meet us, and we will be able to tell them our story, explain what problems our course will solve, and suggest buying it.
From the technical point of view, the webinar funnel consists of a set of landing pages, a platform where we host a webinar, and an automation tool that connects all in one system.
The webinar platform where you stream live or play pre-recorded webinars. There you can add a presentation and show buy buttons during the webinar. It has a chat option, where people ask questions online, and you can reply. Some have the opportunity to make quizzes and other engaging stuff. Most popular are WebinarJam, Click meeting, Webinar Ninja, etc.
The funnel software allows you to send reminders, automated warm-up or sales sequences, invitations, links to landing pages, and payment gateways. It can run on emails or chatbot messages. Most popular – Clickfunnels, Leadpages, Demio.
Email automation tools are a proven system that has worked for years. Although open rates are recently lower than they used to be, they still reliable, and I suggest using them to create webinar funnels. ActiveCampaing, Mailchimp, Get Response.
Chatbots instead have much higher open rates and are much quicker, but they have limitations caused by strict sending rules and often get blocked, so you can lose all your database by sending additional follow-ups or a reminder.
Manychat or Bothelp are the most popular Facebook messenger automation tools.
Advanced users create funnels using both emails and chatbots simultaneously, making open rates higher. If a person misses an email, they will get a reminder on Facebook.
The third step is the traffic system, which attracts people to our landing pages and webinars.
How to drive traffic into your webinar sales funnel
There are three main ways to drive traffic to a webinar:
- Paid ads, mainly Facebook and Instagram ads.
- Using different databases: email lists, chatbots lists, phone numbers, and others.
- Social media, like your Instagram account, Facebook page, telegram channel, youtube channel, blog, etc.
Check this article with 14 main ways for online promotion–you can use them all to increase your online presence and collect more followers and subscribers who will attend your webinar in the future.
Don’t forget about reminders.
How to make sure that people will come to your webinar
After registration, we need to ensure that the person will come to a webinar. There are different approaches to do that.
- before three days,
- one day,
- one hour,
- when it starts,
- and the most important one, 5-10 minutes after the webinar has already started, where we say something like – “Hey, we already started, join us before the actual contents start! It’s not too late!”
Once I remember, the final reminder after the webinar had already started brought + 30% attendees, compared with the very beginning, do not miss that opportunity. Use it.
The warm-up series it’s a different approach. You can send educational and related materials connected with the topic of your webinar. Tell stories about yourself or your students, give some social proof, and links to your social accounts.
You can send some tips and checklists. But don’t give too much. You should keep people engaged but still curious so they come to a webinar.
One more important notice, all emails or chatbot messages should include links to the webinar with instructions on how to attend the webinar.
Types of webinars for a sales funnel
After we bring people to a webinar registration page, they can attend the webinar, but first, we need to understand what kind of webinars we have?
Live webinar – is when people register for a webinar, we tell them the date and time where it will be and then send them reminders to come, and when the date and time come, we host a live event.
A live webinar is the most effective way to sell a course. During the webinar, we can have a direct conversation with our audience. We can get feedback, adjust the presentation on the go, answer questions or make live audits. It is like selling from the stage only done online. There is nothing to compare with it. The most significant sales are always made during the live webinar.
But along with that, it is very time and energy-consuming. You can’t make webinars every day. It isn’t easy.
People forget to come to webinars, even with reminders, or decide to do something else when the time comes.
If you didn’t manage to bring enough people to a webinar, there is no point in it, as there will be a small audience, and it lowers the chances of making sales, but you can’t postpone it, as all the ads launched, and reminders sent.
Nevertheless, starting with a live webinar is better if you are a beginner. To become more professional, you should host at least 20-50 live webinars to help you understand your audience, find the best way to communicate, and train to sell your course!
And the main thing – you will find your ideal selling script. After each webinar, you should carefully analyze what was good and should stay and what to remove from the webinar script.
Hosting a live webinar is a beneficial experience; you should use it to convert it into an automated evergreen webinar!
So what is the alternative, or I would rather say the next step after a live webinar?
Evergreen webinars in a sales funnel
An evergreen webinar is a pre-recorded webinar that will be played for weeks or even months, allowing you to make your sales on autopilot.
There are two types of evergreen webinars: automated webinars and on-demand webinars. Let’s dig into each one of them.
An automated webinar is when people can join a webinar without waiting for the start date. There is always a “just-in-time” session to participate in within a few minutes of someone landing on your registration page.
People think they are attending a live webinar (although it’s not). They see other participants, can write questions in the chat, and hear “replies” from the host. If such a webinar is done correctly, they won’t feel the difference from a live webinar!
I bet you already attended such webinars and didn’t even notice that it is pre-recorded, or probably you were wondering if it’s live or not?
The main challenge with automated webinars is the perception they are “fake.” So I suggest not to lie that the webinar is live. People are smart. It’s not worth risking your credibility. You can say it’s pre-recorded, but participants can still ask questions you will answer later. Some webinar platforms have that option. I.e., Smart webinar.
The second option of an evergreen webinar is an on-demand webinar.
The main difference is you don’t have to pretend it’s live (joke).
The best thing is that it is always available on the page with just a button click.
People choose when they want to see it and don’t have to wait for the start day, but that is s weak point. When the webinar is always available, people often think they can watch it later when they have time, which often never happens.
That is why register-to-watch and watch-through conversion rates with on-demand webinars are comparatively lower than live or automated webinars, where people seize the moment and are afraid to leave.
A follow-up to increase your conversion rate and sales
When the webinar is finished, it doesn’t mean the work is done. Don’t forget to send follow-up emails or messages to your attendees!
The first one is “thanks for attending!” and “the recording is on the way.” It also should include the offer to buy your course and payment links.
If they still didn’t buy, you can send a sales sequence with cases of your students and similar stories, suggesting to buy, attend the new event or provide a consultation. Follow-ups are another chance for conversion.
I suggest starting with a live webinar. It will give you a chance to talk with your audience, understand their questions and objections, and find out what works best.
When you can make steady sales on live webinars, record the best version and make it evergreen – automated or on-demand.
That is when you can scale it and be rewarded for your hard work.
Although creating a webinar funnel takes effort, it is worth doing it. If done correctly, it’s a powerful marketing tool that will help sell your course on autopilot.
I hope that after reading this article, you better understand how to make it.
Don’t know how to launch your very first online course? Contact me (Milya Kotery, the author of this site), on Facebook, and I will consult and help you with that!