How to Produce Better Webinars – Todd Earwood
In this episode of the podcast, I talk with, Todd Earwood. Todd is the founder and CEO over at Money Path where he and his team build growth campaigns using several tactics, but most importantly webinars. He does it so well the folks over at Hubspot and GoToWebinar encouraged him to help others and share his formula. Todd talks to me about his webinar secrets and offers some advanced tips on how to leverage your webinars.Questions During Podcast
- How many webinars do you think that you’ve done over the years?
- Do you think webinars are more centric to a technical sale or are you guiding people to use webinars in other industries?
- Your email research found webinars are the second most prominent follow-on offer? Why do you think that is?
- How do you see webinars evolving? Do you think, they’re going to be more prominent, less prominent?
- How would you guide a senior marketer with their next webinar? How can we produce better webinars?
- What’s one of your, most successful webinars that you can recall?
- What made it so effective?
- How did you measure the success of your customer’s niche webinar?
- What you do or read or listen to or watch to stay on top of your game?
- What people ask your advice on other than marketing and sales?
- If you didn’t have any responsibilities at home or work, what would you do with your time next week?
Scott: Well, hey everyone. This is Scott and thanks for downloading the latest episode of the Scott King Show where I talk with sales and marketing leaders from all over the world on how they are building their brands and growing their businesses. Today’s guest is Todd Earwood. Todd is the founder and CEO over at Money Path where he and his team build growth campaigns using several tactics, but most importantly webinars. He does it so well the folks over at Hubspot and GoToWebinar encouraged him to help others and share his formula and he’s going to give us some tips on whatever his webinar formula is and I’m very interested because I myself have probably done over 200 webinars in the past and I guarantee you I’m going to learn something from Todd. So, Todd, welcome to the show,
Todd: Scott, man great to be here. Thanks for having me.
Scott: It’s my pleasure. And like I said, you know, we were talking earlier about, about webinars and they’re a pretty easy vehicle. Most people that listen to the show have either produced a webinar or have attended one either live or recording the webinar. I’ve got a friend that actually has done a 24-hour webinar. I’m really curious about what you’re going to teach us about what you’ve learned, and what tips you can provide us to make a more engaging and entertaining a webinar.How many webinars do you think that you’ve done over the years?
Todd: Oh Man, I mean the hundreds. I don’t, I’ve way past losing count, right? It’s something that I built as a good lead driver or lead accelerator for my software companies in the past. After I was done building software, I went towards the consulting route where we’re helping companies build, as you read it earlier, the marketing and sales campaigns. I found that the number one thing I could do was take- take a deep dive into what are the direct response marketers doing. How do you take out the sleaze of some of the methods they use and use it for us on the corporate business side. Then, marry this with the whole intent of driving segmented qualified sales leads.
Scott: Yeah. It’s interesting you talked about software. I don’t know if I have my blinders on as well since I’ve always sold software. You know, we’ve always used webinars.Do you think webinars are more centric to a technical sale or are you guiding people to use webinars in other industries?
Todd: Definitely other industries. What really led me to go really deep on webinars was a research project I completed. I think B2B SaaS companies are the world’s best content marketers. I think almost by necessity if you’re going to- if you believe in the whole education model for marketing, I think B2B SaaS people are the best at it. So, what I did was I found a public ranking of the top 300 SaaS companies and then I opted into their some piece of gated content that was on their homepage. Then, I hired two data scientists to track all of the data points about how people email a cold lead and what do they do to nurture it. What came out of that was a ridiculous amount of research. I was shocked because the number one thing that SaaS companies email cold prospects about, or in this case at the top of funnel prospects. They email number one about, you know, blog posts, basic content on the website. Number two is a webinar. That made me dive deeper into why is the second most popular content type of an email going to be a webinar and now I’ve gone so far down the rabbit hole, I can’t come back out.
Scott: Wow. Why do you think the webinars were number two? I mean, I could guess, but did the research like explicitly tell you a definitive answer or are they just one. They [laughter] I mean, they’re easy to produce and they’re easy to consume. So, is that the reason or was it something else?Your email research found webinars are the second most prominent follow on offer? Why do you think that is?
Todd: What I’ve been kind of extrapolated from all the data and then by talking to enough people is, it s a, high-intent high-value proposition for both sides. So you’re going to add more value in that then you will a blog post or an e-book or a social posts to the prospect and the prospect is giving you so much of their time and their attention. And of course, as you said, it’s easier to produce. So, we’ve got all the technology, webinar tools now to track everything you do. If you’re looking at another screen, did you click on the poll? All those things. So, I think it was just a matter of both parties win with a webinar. If you’re willing to invest the time and learn and sit in front of the computer and let someone presenting information to you, then you can also get on the prospect side. I’m going to hopefully learn something and not get schemed into a sales pitch when really, I was told I was going to learn something. So, I think both parties can win from it. And if you think about it, most of these bigger SaaS companies and when your ranking the top best a revenue was a variable in this third-party list. They have more resources and time. I think bigger companies ere on the side of webinar because they know it’s high value and they had the time and resources to produce them. Not everyone on the smaller side I think has.
Scott: Yeah, it’s a good conversion point too, between sales and marketing. Everyone always argues that with each other. Sales isn’t doing their job. Marketing isn’t doing their job. A webinar when someone attends and actually watches it or a meeting, they’re really good conversion points. You can more easily hand off a conversation if someone is already consumed all of your content and they’re interested just like in a meeting. So, I agree. I love them, because, one, they’re easy to consume. And luckily, we have a video player in our pocket at all time with the mobile device.
Todd: Right.How do you see webinars evolving? Do you think, they’re going to be more prominent, less prominent?
Todd: Yeah. So, it’s interesting. I have my thesis, you know, has been kind of tested and tested and tested over the last few years. Hubspot figured out what I was doing and then GoToWebinar. Now I’ve got external data points where they’re helping me piece this together and so that’s become more clear to me. I don’t think the term webinar is obviously like you said, it’s old. Most of us have done them time and time again. I think the format of video and producing content where someone is more engaged in that and he hadn’t can commit more time and be tracked on what they’re doing. I think that whether you call it a webinar or whatever the new thing they’re going to call them but is only going to grow and knowing some of the things about go to webinars roadmap, where they’re taking it is exactly what you’re thinking Scott. It’s a video and it’s a great way to produce a video without hiring a videographer and we have all the screenshot capability. If you can add that in and mix it into your marketing automation software and track it properly, it becomes really really powerful. So, I think that’s where it’s headed now it’s not really that focused today. People are still using the traditional – I need registrations and then I’ll do a replay. We’ve expanded that model to be far greater than what it is today.
Scott: I’m curious what some of your standards to do’s are or not to do s? If you were talking to a senior marketer, how would you guide them to either do or not do with their next webinar? Say we’re going to produce one in a couple of weeks. Right?How would you guide a senior marketer with their next webinar?
Scott: What are some tips?
Todd: I think there are a few key things to think about in the very beginning. Number one, as marketers, we love numbers. We love metrics. I think you’re worrying about the wrong metrics when you only think about registrations and attendees. Now, with all of these webinar platforms and because you’ve got a video player in your pocket, you also need to be thinking about this webinar system is going to export an MP4 or video file. I should have a content replication process because if you structure webinar content correctly, you can easily re-purpose this in multitudes of ways at all stages of the funnel. So that’s number one is like, stop worrying about the metrics. Number two, once you get that MP4, let’s think beyond the replay. Number three is from a presentation standpoint. We tell people unless you are Kevin Hart, the comedian, or you’re Adele the singer, you can’t hold an audience’s attention for 30 to 90 minutes with your one voice. You need to have a minimum of two people. One being the host MC. Much like the conversation we’re having here, Scott. Each of us is going to talk back and forth and hopefully add some value to your listeners and that’s what we try to do in our webinars. We have a host and then we have a thought leader and we have a cadence. Almost like a performance where we’re going to hand it back and forth to keep the person engaged and to put the thought leader properly on her throne. Which is what you want your thought leader inside your company to be. Not down here. You know the analogy I make Scott is my father is a retired minister. Whether you go to church or not, you can probably imagine if you came into any building and the person greeted you. Then, they walked to the front of the group. Then, they made announcements. Then, prayed and they took the money. Then, gave the sermon. It would be very odd. But in webinars, that’s what we do. We expect the one-man band. In my webinars, we don’t do that. We make sure there are two people and there is a cadence going back and forth to keep them hyper-engaged and put the thought leader up where they deserve to be.
Scott: Yeah, totally agree on the multiple speakers. Doing one by yourself is, one, you don’t, you know, your cadence gets off. You either go too slow or too fast [laughter] and you get stuck with like, okay, what was I going to say? You know, because I was just talking, and you weren’t even paying attention to yourself. So, [laughter] if that is happening then surely your audience has tuned out at that point.What’s one of your, most successful webinars that you can recall? What made it so effective?
Todd: So, I, I think those metrics are important. I just think they’re kind of phase one and I think webinars should have multiple phases.
Scott: Yeah, they’re not the most important.
Todd: They’re not the most and they’re not metrics. So, a great example is a company that’s an applicant tracking software company. They’ve been around 14 years. They’ve done every possible marketing campaign you can imagine. They’ve got a good but not or, you not great market share in the industries they serve. They’re a very good company and when I talked to them and I suggested a webinar, their eyes roll because they’ve done that before and I said, look, here’s the difference. Why don’t the lowest hanging we can do for you is let’s go into your CRM and I will try what you would think is the hardest leads to prove to you it can work. Let’s go to the cold leads, the dead leads. And so, we did really a re-engagement webinar and the outcomes that we measured for success ultimately were we did leads that sales refused to hand to us. Like, you know how I mean I don’t, I’ve done a lot of selling of you, Scott, like we don’t want our hot leads to be messed with when we’re near to the closing phase, right? So that we don’t need them to be necessarily sent a webinar and that’s what happened here. I was literally sent people who would not speak to them or open emails and not only did we get the registrations and attendees far greater than they’ve ever had. What we did on the outcomes was we had someone reply who is the fourth largest prospect in his industry. We had that person reply and say, “This is great. I have this exact problem.” We made our title and our hook of our webinar be very targeted to the niche that he has a problem he has. And that guy is hilarious. The guy replied and said, have I not heard of you guys? And they’d been marketing to him for three years.
Todd: They literally had a sales rep who had rotated through their sales cycle. They hand to another sales rep a year later and he never heard of the company. Because we did the invitations correctly, and this is another tip for people to use is you need to, if it’s on email, if your email is the promotion mechanism, make it a private webinar. Don’t put it on social. People like to feel like they’re having something exclusive. In this case, he was, it was private for 4,000 people we invited, but what it wasn’t, was put on twitter and everything else. We had that narrow hook of the title was the top five mistakes that X, you know, security business owners make with, I think it was, I’m trying to remember exact title with pre, oh, pre-hire, pre-hire tactics. Super Narrow, right? A guy who thinks he has hiring figured out is not going to sign up. Someone who’s in finance is not going to sign up because it’s for security companies. So, having that niche topic ended up being a great win with a big client for him but re-engaged a ton of leads that they thought before were just dead.
Scott: Yeah, love it, love it. Yeah, the best leads are probably in, you know, already in the system, right? Everybody’s always looking for more leads and more opportunities and more times than not, you already have them. You just don’t know them yet or they don’t know you. So, I liked that example. And then so I mean, did you measure the success because the guy replied, or did he become a customer or was you know?How did you measure the success of your customer’s niche webinar?
Todd: He is a customer.
Todd: Yeah. Sorry, I didn’t mean to cut you off there. A great question. The other measurement for us was we then put because we structure our content such as Top Three, Top Five, the whole Buzzfeed. Buzzfeed in some ways, I give them credit for programming human beings. We have to read things on the list and as marketers, we’ve jumped on that train because now we try to trump each other. Your top five versions going to be trumped by my blog post and the top seven ways to do something. So, we try to stick with that model because people seem to register, have higher registrations and replays. If you do the top three, top five mistakes, I think that’s their key part is you need to talk about a pain not, not reaching or getting gains, so that’s another key part about the hook, but the measurement for them was we splintered that content into five separate videos. We took the MP4 from GoToWebinar, we export it. Because the content was structured, one, two, three, four, five, It was very easy, very easy to pull that out. Then we armed the salespeople and they were using it. We found at the bottom of the funnel. So now Scott, if I’m the salesperson and you’re my prospect and I can’t quite push you over the edge and I’m looking for the objections that are stopping us from moving forward and I find out it’s about pre-hire screening and how do you manage that. I’m going to put- what the sales reps in this company we’re doing are they’re literally taking one of the videos that marketing had cut up for them and saying, Scott, I really appreciate what we’ve been discussing. I thought you’d find this useful and now they’re using it. They are re-purposing that content that was created once many different ways. They also did that in like a highlight reel. That’s one of the different ways when you look at metrics is how has that content replication strategy helped the entire organization? Where are we utilizing that asset, not just the live, you know, live event and the replay?
Scott: It’s a good idea. I would suspect that many people don’t do that, right? Because there’s a lot of post-production work that would need to happen, but you know, with some tools and some freelancers you can probably get that done relatively quickly and inexpensively.
Todd: Yeah, they use Fiverr.
Scott: Oh, yeah.
Todd: To MP4 and again. The content structure we gave them was such that we knew in advance we wanted to do this strategy. It allowed us to say here are going to be some clean breaks. It’s not a complex thing where you’re hiring, you know, a hundred dollar an hour videographer to come in and edit this up and final cut and chop it up and throw in lower threads. That’s not what they wanted to do. They ended up paying somebody, a videographer to actually do the highlight reel, which is a pretty clever deal. They also did one more thing, if you don’t mind me sharing with you. That was really where they took my model and changed it is they used polls at the beginning. I used to use polls only at the end, but they started getting a poll at the very beginning and their question was very memorable. It was, do you think you need more candidates to get a quality hire? And it was a head fake question and it was their idea of just getting people engaged by asking them for virtually anything to get them to click on a button. And the answers were: Yes, No, Is the Pope Catholic? Everybody got a laugh and clicked yes and Pope. And it was actually a head fake because then the host, not the thought leader. The host said, well, I’m glad you. Everyone thinks that’s the issue. I can’t wait for you to learn from our thought leader, Jeff when he talks about this topic because I think you’re going to be surprised. It’s not the quantity that you guys need to solve your problem and Jeff’s going to educate you about that today. So introducing, that was another great engagement point that they used that now most all of my clients use because it’s fun to see when you build something, other people make it better and better.
Scott: Yeah. That’s great. That’s great. Yeah, it’s good to force the engagement on the front end, right? Because like you said, most polls are either in the middle or the end, so I like that. Maybe I’ll do that next time.
Todd: It was clever. Yeah, it was clever.
Scott: Alright Todd, so, so you’ve inspired us to make our webinars better.What you do or read or listen to or watch to stay on top of your game? How do you become inspired?
Todd: So I’m, of course, a listener. We’re doing this medium right now. I’m hardcore into audiobooks and podcasts. I don’t really read blogs. My main, if you think about continuous learning or professional development, my primary source is I spend real budget on traveling to conferences. I typically travel to six every year. I have three that I will never miss. Then I have three that I try every year. Sometimes I get duds, but I’m the, I come from the camp that I only need a nugget or two to bring back my company or to my clients to share with them that I’ve learned. I don’t need to have my life transformed. Right? I’ve done Tony Robbins. I’ve gone to those kinds of things too, but I actually go to conferences and it’s costly, but I found if you can come back and share with your team that value of Oh, is exposed, you know, two years ago to Messenger bots. Like that was early. We got the jump on the train early on that- on that trend because I’d heard it first at a speaker, but it was a really like cutting-edge marketing technology conference. That’s my number one way is outside of just being an avid reader and content consumer on the audio side, it’s, I go to conferences, I purposely seek out different conferences to see if I can learn new things.
Scott: Yeah, that’s cool. Yeah. I don’t go into a lot of conferences because I run the podcasts. I feel like I go to conferences every week. You’re the conference speaker today. I just basically run my own conference.What people ask your advice on other than marketing and sales?
Todd: A lot of people asked me things related to business. If it’s the professional side, it’s scaling, right? Like, how do you scale a business because they’ve been able to scale a couple? The recruitment side is number one everybody comes back to. I’m trying to hire so and so and this is my challenge, right? So, I think people asked me that a lot. On the personal side, it’s typically about tennis. I love tennis. I played when I was younger and then didn’t play for 20 years and then got back into it. I got ridiculously hardcore about it. Then we had a baby and so I’m less hardcore about tennis, but I still am an avid advocate for people to join the game of tennis. It’s a fun social game and exercise is never a bad thing.
Scott: You’re the first tennis advocate. [laughter] That’s interesting. I used to play with a friend of mine years ago and then I fell off my bike and dislocated my shoulder really bad and I just stopped. Right. And I’m like man, and my shoulder still pops out all the time. The kids laugh at me [laughter]If you didn’t have any responsibilities at home or work, Todd, what would you do with your time next week?
Todd: Yeah, I think I would play tennis if I didn’t have that, I would definitely play tennis. I also think that we have a young son and he’s 18 months old, our first child and we had children later in life and so I, I would make more time for family. Specifically, my wife had an idea literally like, hey, we need to do this during the day when they’re not all the crazy people are going to these holiday things. And I thought, man, I’m going to have to work that in somehow. I would spend more time with my son on a whole day basis of just giving my wife today off and giving myself more time with him is what I would love to spend more time. But I would also like, I mean, dude, I would read, I love to read and if I had my choice like we were on vacation last week and I read two books in one week because that’s what I love to do. So, I wouldn’t go to a conference with my free time. I want to play tennis though, but I would not go to a conference. I wouldn’t even do a webinar. I would be with my family, I would play tennis and I would read a lot.
Scott: That sounds great. That sounds great. So, Todd, if someone had a question for you based on anything that they heard today, what is your favorite way to be contacted?
Todd: I would say, you know, connect with me a webinar works. We’re all over the internet now or connect with me on LinkedIn are the two best ways to find me at any time and it’s webinarworks.io. If you want to learn more about that and, and there are free resources there for you for people that want to optimize or get started in a webinar.
Scott: All right, we’ll definitely a link back to all those free resources because we’re going to subscribe to you and see how you market us, right? Because that’s how you learned earlier.
Todd: There we go.
Scott: So, any closing thoughts, Todd, you want to leave us with?
Todd: I think the most overlooked marketing campaign today is webinars and I think it’s so rare because it marries together sales and marketing in a high intent way that other lead sources can’t provide.
Scott: Perfect. Perfect. Hey, well thank you so much for investing your time in my audience. I hope that we taught everybody that they need to optimize their webinar production capabilities and a good selling.
Todd: Scott. That’s awesome. Thank you, man.