Initially launched in the 1990s, webinar caché once relied heavily on live events. In 2020 however, we saw the webinar space pivot towards the on-demand space.
Lower cost per acquisition, ease of automation, and building trusted archives of useful content has proven to be an effective means of moving customers through the sales funnel.
While not as flashy as their live counterparts, evergreen webinars have proven to be the tortoise to live webinar’s hare: slow and steady sees the highest ROI.
Read on to find out our favorite evergreen webinar strategies, platforms, and the features that make all the difference.
What is an evergreen webinar?
The evergreen webinar is simply a webinar that has been made accessible beyond its initial play date. While a live webinar is usually viewed as an event, like a concert or book launch, an evergreen webinar is best suited to educational content and should be viewed as a learning tool.
When businesses first started producing webinars the focus skewed towards live events. Shiny and new, the promise of a live webinar meant capturing highly engaged leads and collaborating with top talent in the industry.
But live webinars are also a ton of work to produce: weeks of coordination, marketing emails, practice sessions, and script revisions, building slide decks… all for an hour of learning, and a few days of follow-ups.
Tons of information was lost every time a webinar ended because there wasn’t a simple way to re-watch it. Until we got savvy and started recording them.
Hosting your recorded webinars is an excellent, low-cost way to create resources for potential or existing customers about how to get set up with your software, walking through common blockers customers face, or demonstrating new tools and integrations.
There are many different content streams you can explore with automated webinars, including:
- Training videos: Record your account executive’s run-through of your software and make it work harder by offering it as an on-demand webinar.
- Lectures and thought leadership: Get the most out of guest-speaker and C-Suite time by offering a thought-leadership section of on-demand webinars in your archive.
- Tutorials: Make it simple to learn how to use and explore new product integrations or updates with quick, evergreen webinar content.
- A case study walk through: Make your case studies come to life, and then automate the recording to make your witticisms and insights go the extra mile.
When done well, a library of on-demand webinars can act as an automated sales engine, driving customers through the funnel as they engage with and learn more about your product. It’s a great example of working smarter rather than harder.
Evaluating the Best Evergreen Webinar Software
It’s tempting to outsource your software search to Google. While you might end up with a good product, you may be missing key features that will make your presentations really hum. You may even end up over-investing. The first thing to do? Understand your limits.
A webinar program can be a simple automated recording ... or it can be as complicated as producing live television. Understand the complexity of your program by asking yourself the following questions:
- How many attendees do I expect per session? Most platforms have tiered pricing tied to how many guests can attend a given webinar. If you’re just starting your webinar program, look for an option that will allow you to scale up but doesn’t demand a huge investment right away.
- What resources are available to me? Training and implementation take time. A lot of time. As you’re researching platforms, consider what kind of support is available. Will you be given a dedicated account manager? How robust is the platform’s resource library? Remember: The best software is the software you actually use.
- Always take advantage of a free trial … and if you are considering purchasing the product, but need more time, ask for an extension.
The Best Evergreen Webinar Software
On-demand webinars don’t have the same immediate converting power as their live counterparts. Instead, they excel at customer education and establishing brand trust.
Think of your on-demand webinars as a way to educate your existing customer base, and as an ambassador of your company’s willingness to help.
Here are four of the best software for hosting, recording, and delivering evergreen webinars:
eWebinar focuses 100% on webinar automation and is an ideal choice for companies looking to scale their sales demos and customer onboarding webinars without sacrificing the one-on-one connection that makes those live events so valuable and effective.
- Customers today expect information to be available to them whenever they want it. Flexible scheduling options let you make your webinars available around the clock in any time zone, including the option for registrants to join a session effectively on demand.
- eWebinar’s unique chat system notifies you when someone sends a message so you can jump in and answer questions in real time. If you (or your team) are not able to respond right away, you can reply later and the attendee will get your response by email.
- The whole experience is interactive. It is easy to insert things like polls, questions, tips, and more into the timeline of your pre-recorded presentation so they appear at key moments and keep attendees engaged until the very end.
Demio is a best-of-both-worlds option. While its focus is on producing live webinars, Demio makes it simple to build out your webinar library. We love how Demio:
- Offers automated recordings, which make it easy to record and archive live events into an easily searchable content library.
- Has a “Stay Registered” feature, which allows participants to sign up once for an ongoing series and captures valuable emails for future marketing efforts.
- Boasts an excellent analytics dashboard to give you insight into how your live and on-demand webinars are performing — a great opportunity to let your learnings inform your live and evergreen webinar content.
The OG in evergreen webinar technology, EverWebinar is all about the on-demand life. If you’re looking to set it and … well, not forget it, but not be beholden either, this is the software for you.
- EverWebinar allows users to schedule their webinars to play at set intervals throughout the day, week, or month. This has the double benefit of mimicking the live experience (which does tend to get higher engagement). It also lets your marketing team run tests as to what time of day is best for your audience.
- A list of unique features makes it easy to drive home the “live” illusion and cut back on the stress of managing a big roster of scheduled webinars. Options like “Block dates,” which stop your webinars from playing on specific days, or “Block nighttime viewing,” which keeps your analytics from being skewed by background streaming. “Time-zone auto-detection” makes it easy to globalize your offering with the click of a button.
- A bonus for super-users: if you’re looking for a platform to help you organize your collection of recorded webinars, EverWebinar and WebinarJam are designed to function together. *Insert handshake emoji*
A great option for a company new to the webinar game, WebinarGeek is a simple software that makes it easy to host and record live webinars and turn them into a library of evergreen, on-demand content.
Along with standard features like customizable waiting rooms and robust analytics, we also love:
- WebinarGeek’s intuitive interface: It’s easy for someone brand new to the webinar world to orient themselves in the WebinarGeek platform.
- The monthly pricing plan, making this option accessible for businesses looking to explore the webinar space without a deep financial commitment.
- The pre-record function makes it simple to test presentations, rehearse with multiple presenters, and explore other features. Pre-recording your webinar also leaves you with a “clean” version to upload as your evergreen content.
Build an evergreen webinar funnel with these top tools.
As we all get more literate in live and on-demand educational content, the need for simple and sleek webinar platforms will continue to grow.
By determining your needs early and taking the time to test various platforms, your team will be ready to educate, inspire, and get a better understanding of your customer base so you can help them make great decisions.