It’s never been easier to produce your own webinars – but it’s still a lot of work, and may involve some investment in terms of equipment, marketing outreach, and other expenses. Ideally, you should make back all that you spent and more, by generating business from a successful webinar—but that’s not always the case. Presenting paid webinars.
At some point, the thought occurs to most of us producing free webinars: should we be charging money for these? Sometimes, the answer is yes. Here’s a look at some pros and cons of charging money for your webinars.
Pro: More people attend on the day of the event
As soon as you start charging for your webinars, audiences will perceive them as worth more. This can also mean that more people will show up the day of the webinar – and not just bail on an event they signed up for.
According to some surveys, only about 35-40% of people who sign up for a free webinar actually attend on the day. By contrast, about 80% of those who sign up for a paid webinar attend.
Con: The size of your audience will go down overall
A higher percentage of your sign-ups may show up on the day, but it’s likely the number of sign-ups you get will go down overall. The size of your audience on the day of the webinar may also go down – or it may not, depending on how the percentages even out.
The fact remains that in general, you’ll attract a smaller audience with paid webinars. This can be a problem if the reason you produce webinars is to build a brand and connect with a wider audience.
Pro: Your attendees are more motivated
Whether paid or free webinars are more lucrative remains hard to say. One thing that complicates the picture is this: you may not get more sign-ups with paid webinars, but you can be certain that those who do sign up are highly motivated. That means you’ll get a very valuable list of contacts out of each event – people who’ve spent money with you before, who want the knowledge you’re selling, and who are likely to spend again.
Pro: They set you apart
In most industries, free webinars are far more common than paid webinars. Offering paid webinars immediately differentiates you from the competition, creating an impression that your content is more valuable than theirs, which can work in your favor.
Con: Your audience will have higher expectations
If someone is shelling out money for a ticket to your webinar, they will want to get their money’s worth. This may mean that you’ll have to make a bigger investment in the webinars you produce, in terms of content, production value, time, or all of those.
Paid webinars definitely have benefits and drawbacks. In some situations, they can be the right move, or effective when offered alongside free webinars that attract a broader audience. Take the drawbacks into account in your planning, and hopefully you can find the right balance of free and paid webinars that works for your business.