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Speed to lead: How to book record meetings from webinars

August 19, 2021

B2B salespeople and Olympic athletes have a lot in common.

Now, before you look around at your team and giggle while thinking to yourself “Who here could possibly swim 100m of breaststroke in just over a minute?!”

Think about how your team could make a record day in sales from inbound webinar leads!

Our a̶t̶h̶l̶e̶t̶e̶s sales team in the US may not have gotten gold medals, but they were treated to a steak dinner.

Why?

Because they absolutely smashed it by booking a record number of meetings in one day.

Led by Patrick Connolly, our team was able to book 44 meetings in just 2 hours!

Keep scrolling to find out how we did it and how you can use our formula to have your own record-breaking sales day! 👇

Why webinar leads are important and why you must act fast | What should your sales team do before the webinar goes live? | Preparation and accountability | What happens after the webinar goes live? | Booking meetings from webinar leads | Key takeaways | More great sales stuff

In Patrick’s third week on the job, he was not okay with “just okay.”

Pat wanted to make his mark at Cognism and came up with an incredible plan to do so.

Yep, you guessed it. Pat set out to have a record-breaking sales day.

The first thing you need to do if you’re wanting to do the same?

You’ve got to understand:

Why webinar leads are important and why you must act fast 👩‍💻

Webinar leads are prospects who are exhibiting behaviours. Those behaviours are a potential buying signal.

If you have a prospect who isn’t a customer attending your webinar, they potentially have a pain point that your solution solves.

Once the prospect has attended your webinar, you have a reason to call them; they’re more “warmed up” than the average cold call prospect.

“You can approach it like a cold call, but you have a reason to call. The prospect is likely a good fit if they’re attending your webinar.” - Patrick Connolly

You’re going to want to act on these leads as soon as possible if you want to create that speed to lead mentality and to book a record number of meetings.

You’ve got to remember that your prospects are inundated with information all day.

If you wait a week to contact them, they’ll likely forget what was even discussed in the webinar.

However, if you call them right after or the next day, they’ll be far more engaged in your conversation and open to your solution.

So, once you’ve understood the importance of these leads and why you need to act fast, what comes next?

What should your sales team do before the webinar goes live? 👩‍🏫

As soon as your marketing team has the webinar page live or any form of promotion ready, they’ve got to inform the sales team.

The sales team needs to help drive attendance.

So, any seller that’s on a deal or any SDR that’s on a call should be offering the webinar to their prospects.

Here’s where your sales and marketing teams need to align on timelines.

You should have very clear timelines of:

  • When the webinar leads are coming in.
  • When your sales team can expect them to be in cadence.
  • When the sales team follows up with them.
  • What the first touch looks like.

Then, you need to assign roles within your teams - e.g. planning your cadence and whether sales or marketing are going to handle it.

Once you’ve done this, you’ve got to set goals for your sales team.

In order to set reasonable goals, your marketing team must look at your typical number of webinar leads and their conversation rate goal. Then, sales and marketing must agree on appropriate and reachable goals for your sales team.

“You have to adjust your goals based on each webinar your host. It depends on the volume of leads, the number of people that attend, and the quality of record and then you need to get behind that mantra.”

Preparation and accountability 👨‍🔬

In your B2B sales prep, you’re going to have a lot of steps… and a lot of questions to ask.

But, you’ve got to make sure you’re asking the right questions and not just asking for the sake of it.

You’ll need to know:

  • Who’s making sure the leads are rounded correctly based on territory?
  • Who’s making sure they’re in Salesforce?
  • Who’s taking the cadence?
  • Who’s making sure these leads are followed up with within a certain time?
  • If outcome ‘A’ happens, what’s the next step? If outcome ‘B’ happens, what’s the next step?

And, the most important question of them all - what are our contingency plans if these things go wrong?

“On the record-breaking day, a lot went wrong. Had we not had a backup plan, we wouldn’t have done what we did.”

Preparation is the most important factor for having a record-setting sales day.

Your team should meet a week before your webinar and ensure the landing page for the webinar is live.

Every time your SDRs have a conversation, they’ve got to send out that landing page to drive attendance up.

Calling people prior to them attending your webinar is an option, but Pat warns that you risk overactivity on a lead if you choose to take this approach.

Your next step in preparation is to meet the day before you plan to smash your record and assign responsibilities.

Pat expands on this:

“You’ve got to be a bit forceful with it and ask the ‘So then what happens?’ questions.”

You need to plan out what the next step is, what time it’s happening, who’s owning each process, and account for any problems that may arise.

If your team is not moving fast enough, they’re going to miss big opportunities.

Especially when you’re doing a speed to lead approach - the moment your team has the data, they’ve really got to go for them.

“It doesn’t matter about this or that data point. If someone goes to a webinar and you follow up with them almost immediately, and you can send over the recording and more information - they’re more likely to take your call.”

“Speed to lead basically says that there’s an enormous drop-off after time spent. So, the faster you can get to them the better.”

“This all goes back to your preparation.”

What happens after the webinar goes live? 🐱‍💻

Once the webinar is live, if you’d like your SDRs to join they can, but a summary of the webinar from marketing should suffice. All you need to make sure is that your SDRs are able to talk about the webinar with prospects.

Once the webinar is live, you also need to ensure:

  • Your leads are in a cadence - split into an "attended" and “not attended”.
  • Your cadence is differentiated with relevant content.
  • You have good B2B data.

If you have the opportunity, you should also split your leads by lead score.

“Your lead score should be made up of title and the highest behavioural intent. If someone had inbounded before and is a CMO, you call them before you call someone who hasn’t inbounded before who’s a Marketing Manager.”

If you don’t have the right data to reach your webinar attendees, you’re not going to get them on the line.

All the data you’re working with, particularly after a webinar, is incredibly important.

You can have 400 leads coming in and not enough sales reps to cover them.

So, what do you do?

You manage your data properly.

Pat’s team made their first step an email in order to manage their lead data as effectively as possible.

Next, Pat started cutting out extraneous steps in the follow-up process.

“A Vidyard might be important, so might a LinkedIn request at times. But, after a webinar, this is not a cold lead, so you just need to follow up. Keep it simple - try to understand why they came to your webinar, and if you can help them.”

Pat also suggests asking marketing to make a list of people who asked questions on the webinar and people who requested follow-ups.

Get the cadences that Cognism's SDRs use to follow up on attended and not attended webinar leads! Click 👇 

Cognism Webinar Leads Cadences

Booking meetings from webinar leads 📅

In order to help your team actually book meetings from webinar leads, you’ve got to equip them with some content:

  • Always ensure your SDRs have a recording of the webinar.
  • Create a list of topics that were discussed and send out a document on this.
  • Highlight well-received comments from the webinar. Create a list of these for your SDRs to reference on their calls.

Once they’re equipped and on the phones, your SDRs need to follow best practice on post-webinar cold calling.

Using the fact that the lead attended is not a good enough reason to justify booking the meeting.

Here’s what they should do instead:

  1. Open the call by telling the lead that you saw that they attended the webinar.
  2. If the webinar is on shortening your sales cycle, for example, your SDRs must state that they’ve understood that the prospect wants to shorten their sales cycle. Then they can lead into the product you’re offering that does this.
  3. Ask to book a call a few days later at a specific time. During this second call, the sales rep will dig into the lead’s pain points and demonstrate how your product will help.

You also need to have contingency plans in place for problems that may arise from booking inbound webinar leads.

The key problem with webinar leads, is that marketing wants sales to call everyone that they bring in, and sales will be more selective in who they call. Pat said:

“Sometimes leads are the wrong people - anyone can sign up for a webinar. This doesn’t mean they’re a good lead. This is why lead scoring is important prior to getting on the phones.”

Another problem is contact quality; although the account quality can be strong here, the contact might not be the right person to talk to.

So, your SDRs need to get to the right person.

If the wrong person is an AE, get on the phone with them and suggest a call with them and their boss for later that week.

Key takeaways 🥡

Here’s a quick recap on how to have a record-breaking day on booking webinar leads:

  • Planning and accountability are the most essential part of trying to set a record-breaking day for your company.
  • The expectation is set with the number of meetings your team should be booking.
  • The quality of your leads is of the utmost importance.
  • Incentivise your team with something to rally around.
  • You have a contingency plan to fall back on.
  • Your different departments must be aligned on metrics and what they need to do to help your sales team in meeting their goal.

If you ensure you’ve covered all of this ground, your team will be booking more meetings from webinars, and they could have a record-breaking day too!

More great sales stuff 🚀

For more great sales tips for your whole team, follow Cognism on LinkedIn 👇