Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Webcasts Still An Important Tool in Marketer’s Mix

With all the recent hype around Web 2.0 and emerging technologies, it would be easy to think that webcasts - - one of the tried and true tools many CRM vendors have used in the past to both educate and obtain leads -- may have gone by the wayside.

In fact, just the opposite is true. According to a recent study of B2B technology buyers by KnowledgeStorm and Universal McCann, 70% of respondents ranked webcasts as the most popular type of online video content they access on a regular basis. Respondents also felt that good quality production and speedy downloads were of value, but adding glitzy video that was of no informational worth was a negative.

Savvy CRM marketers recognize this and are still leveraging the webcast to entice prospects to share contact information in exchange for virtually attending or downloading the events for free. The webcasts frequently contain valuable information for attendees in the form of data from analyst groups or research the company has conducted, as well as insight shared from customers or employees. This type of content really has to be there – otherwise attendees will not give out their well guarded contact information.

We all know that every potential buyer is pressed for time and has an overcrowded schedule. The webcast lets them come to you when they are ready and, if it is available for their mobile device or IPod, view it on-demand. I think the webcast is going to remain in the B2B technology marketer’s toolbox for awhile to come.

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