This blog was originally published on the MultiView blog. MultiBriefs is a division of MultiView.

When was the first time you experienced a webinar? Maybe it was used as a training method for your first day on the job. Maybe you used it for lead generation or as a sales technique. Whatever the experience, you probably realized how essential webinars are for businesses.

While webinars haven’t been considered ‘innovative’ since they were first introduced in 1996, B2B marketers still consider them one of the best forms of content for engagement.

1996 looks a lot different than 2020, but as technology and business have evolved, so have webinars.

B2B marketers are finding new ways to use webinars as effective sources of lead generation and lead nurturing. Webinars give the opportunity to show off your knowledge. Let your audience know that your company is an expert in industry trends and topics of interest.

It’s important to keep your goals in mind when creating a webinar. What is your overall business goal? Is your webinar catering to these goals?

With so much instant communication directly at our fingertips, marketers are getting creative when attempting to retain their audience’s attention during webinars. In an effort to engage effectively, marketers are focusing their efforts on interactive media such as polls, which can be used to define certain subjects that their buyers are interested in.

Reaching out to attendees via email or social media about the subject is a way marketers can further engage the audience before the webinar begins. B2B marketers can even take questions before the event to get a better feel about who’s in the audience.

Following up with attendees with questions about their experience is a great way to keep them even further engaged in discussion after the webinar. Extending the conversation beyond the webinar will show that you care about who attended, and will create a loyalty to your business. Listening to customers is essential to creating effective webinars in the future.

The 2019 Webinar Strategy Report shows “that while 78 percent of marketers say integrating webinar analytics with their CRM and marketing automation is key to effective webinar management, only 29 percent are actually doing so.”

So why aren’t businesses capitalizing on this data?

In order to fully understand webinar attendees, marketers need to gain as much information about them as possible. Many B2B marketers are missing out on the benefits of data analysis, which can be useful for gaining more sales.

Your CRM is a useful technology that has the potential to make webinar engagement more meaningful and profitable. Linking marketing automation and CRM with webinars could completely change how businesses use webinars.

With all this information, marketers are able to connect with their attendees on a much deeper level. Understanding your buyers not only will help drive sales, but can create relationships that may lead to loyalty in the future.

Webinars are becoming increasingly essential as remote working is still on-trend and doesn’t seem to be going anywhere anytime soon. Companies are creating tools for webinars that allow for ease of use and personalization.

Prezi has introduced Prezi Video, which allows users to maintain a face-to-face connection while still displaying the on-screen content being presented.

Google Hangouts lets users include content from YouTube, Gmail and Google Calendar while communicating with the audience in real-time.

Marketers will use webinars most effectively if they continue to keep up with the various tools companies are offering. These tools can be used for increased personalization with the audience and will aid in retaining their audience’s attention.

One word all marketers cringe at: Budget.

Content creation can be expensive. Different platforms require different types of content, but using content only one time is a thing of the past. Marketers are posting the same content across various platforms in an attempt to reduce costs and remain on budget.

So how can content be used more than once and remain personal?

First, the webinar needs to be created directly for the audience. Second, the webinar can be reused for lead nurturing campaigns.

It can also be repurposed for social media platforms. As long as the original webinar content is meaningful and gives the audience a lasting impression, it can be repurposed in an attempt to save money and time.

Utilizing webinars to their full potential can be challenging, but if done correctly, B2B marketers could see huge gains in lead generation and lead nurturing, while keeping their budgets in check.