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October 19, 2017 | By

How to Measure the Actual ROI of Your Webinar

You know, in your gut, webinars are an indispensable part of your marketing strategy. But can you quantify that feeling?

It turns out, most marketers say webinars are the toughest channel when it comes to measuring ROI. Producing quality webinars takes considerable effort — so you need to prove it’s worth it. Read on to learn how to measure the ROI of your webinar and track other crucial KPIs.

Track the source of webinar registrations.

So where do you start?  Track the source of your webinar registrations. Do registrations pour in from your LinkedIn posts? Promotional emails? Display ads? Whatever marketing automation or analytics solution you use, make sure you track the source of your registrations.

Typically this requires using unique tracking links for each promotional channel. The GoToWebinar Source Tracking feature can also help. Use this feature to create unique registration links for each of your promotional channels.

Know how much money you spend and where you spend it.

Keep track of how much you spend creating and promoting your webinar. This may include advertising spend or design costs for banner ads or the actual webinar presentation. Tally up all the costs to get your total investment.

It’s also important to understand the cost of each promotional channel so you know which channels work and where to focus your budget next time.

Determine lead quality. 

Now it gets a little tougher. Tally up the number of registrations you drove and determine how many count as a qualified lead. Everyone scores leads differently, but here are a few common ways marketers weed out the junk from the gold:

  • Is the registrant in your target market? Does the registrant’s industry, company type, job title and company size match your target market? If you don’t have this data, you can use a data enrichment solution (such as Datanyze) to get this kind of information appended to your contacts.
  • Did they attend? Just because a registrant didn’t attend the webinar, doesn’t mean they aren’t a valuable lead. But, someone who attended the live event could indicate a highly motivated buyer.
  • What other touchpoints have they engaged with? If your registrant has already downloaded an eBook and attended a previous webinar, you can be pretty sure they’re a serious prospect. If this was their first interaction with your company, you’ll have to wait and see what they do next.

Attribute sales and revenue back to your webinar

Now it’s time to get the credit you deserve. Again, everyone does attribution a little differently, but here are a couple methods:

The easiest way is to calculate return is to estimate it using the number of qualified leads your webinar generated and your overall lead-to-sales conversion rate. This is called forecasting. If you know that 10% of qualified leads convert to sales, you can estimate how many of your webinar registrants turn into customers. Let’s say you generated 200 qualified leads. If your conversion rate is 10%, your webinar generated 20 sales.

Now multiply that number by your average Customer Lifetime Value (CLV). This gives you an actual dollar value for your webinar. Then subtract webinar costs to get a clear picture of ROI.

While this is a fairly basic approach — and doesn’t account for other marketing touchpoints — it will help you figure out:

  • If webinars are worth the investment
  • If you should spend more on promotion
  • What types of webinars are the most valuable

The other method is to follow each webinar registrant through the entire journey — from the first touch to sale. With this level of attribution, you’ll be able to see all the marketing touchpoints that drove a sale, and you can give your webinar the appropriate credit.

Don’t forget the other KPIs

There’s no question that ROI is a big part of how you measure webinar performance, but it isn’t everything. Here are a few more KPIs that will give you insights into the value of your webinar and how you can improve your strategy:

  • Attendee engagement score: This is a score calculated by GoToWebinar based on metrics like how long the attendee stayed for the webinar, how long they were actively watching, if they asked questions or participated in polls, etc. This number shows you how well your topic resonated. It can also be an important factor in lead quality.
  • Conversion rate: How many webinar leads turn into customers? You may find webinars aren’t your top lead source in terms of volume, but it more than makes up for it in quality. This indicates you should spend more time and money producing more webinars.
  • Top promo channels: You need to know what works so you can focus your efforts and dollars where they’ll have the biggest impact.
  • Number of registrations: Just looking at this number can help you determine which types of webinars draw the biggest crowds. Analyze your top webinars and see if you can find key learnings about what kinds of titles and topics work, who are the best types of people/companies to partner with, if there are certain times of year that work better for webinars, etc.
  • Number of leads from the live event vs on-demand version: Webinars can keep working for you even after the live event is over. Look at your old webinars and see how many qualified leads you get from the live event versus the on-demand version. You may find you need to invest more promotional dollars for the on-demand version.
  • Number of content assests repurposed from your webinar: Webinars can be repurposed into tons of other valuable content pieces. You can turn a webinar into future blog posts, videos, infographics, and social media content. When you look at the value of your webinar, consider all the other content it helped you create.

Now you’re ready to measure the bottom-line impact of your webinars. And I’m sure you’re going to want to shout the results from the rooftop. Want to learn more about producing webinars that convert? Download, “The Secret to High-Converting Webinars.


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