Welcome to another episode of Explode Your Expert Biz Show, brought to you by http://gtex.org.uk/,
I am your host, Simone Vincenzi, The Experts Strategist, and this is the podcast for experts who want to become the ultimate authority in their niche while making an impact in the world.
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Today I have the pleasure to Interview Agnes Józwiak
Agnes Józwiak is the Marketing Director at ClickMeeting, a provider of webinar solutions.
An experienced marketing professional in the SaaS industry, Agnes has considerable expertise in the fields of marketing management and digital strategy.
In the last year alone, ClickMeeting’s platform hosted nearly 600,000 events with over 17 million attendees and an impressive customer base of 147,500. Agnes has overseen the Poland-based company’s marketing activity since 2016. She graduated from London City University and Technical University of Gdansk.
In this episode, we talk about
- The past, present and futures of webinars
- The different types of webinars to use in your business
- How to use webinars to convert your audience into clients
Connect with Agnes Józwiak
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– Hello, ladies and gentlemen. Welcome to another episode of Explode Your Expert Business Show. Today, I’m here with the brand and communication director of ClickMeeting, Agnes Jozwiak. How you doing, Agnes?
– I’m very well. I’m very glad to be here, Simone, and so I am very, very good.
– Lovely jumper, very flowery. Very flowery and–
– It’s still winter back here, so yeah.
– Where are you calling from? Where are you calling from?
– I’m calling from Gdansk in Poland so going towards winter. It’s towards spring now but still in the winter so jumpers are all necessary.
– Jumpers are all necessary. Pretty cold, pretty cold. Now here in London, it’s been actually pretty, pretty good. We had a great week. It was really interesting because we went from minus two, which for you, is like summer in Poland probably.
– Then we went to plus 15. Going again on like two, three degrees so it’s been a couple weeks but we’re not here to talk
– A roller coaster, yeah.
– Yeah, we’re not here to talk about the weather. We are here to talk about something way more interesting, which is
– Webinars, webinars
– So before we get into webinars and how to use them in the best way, I would love to ask you, Agnes, a bit more about your background. How did you end up working with ClickMeeting and become impassioned about marketing?
– So, hmm, I started off my business career back in London, when I did my university degree, et cetera, et cetera.
– Which unit? Which unit did you do in London?
– City, City University.
– Where were you living?
– King George the Fifth, base on DLR, East London, yeah.
– Yeah, yeah, yeah, okay, cool.
– So, I was there for about six years and then going in to my professional career into advertising agency, going through PR agencies, et cetera. Then I was finishing off my projects, deciding to go back to Poland and then I sort of found this exciting opportunity to work with a company that builds different software. At that time, it was GetResponse for email marketing and ClickMeeting was still in development but it was an exciting opportunity. And then when I was offered to run marketing for ClickMeeting, the webinar platform at that time, I was very excited because it was starting everything from the beginning. From, you know, building different touchpoints, the product, being involved in the product and building its brand, the communication for the brand and the product itself because at that time, it was a team of seven when we started off. But it came off from an application that we needed to communicate different offices back in Canada and here back in Poland and we thought, Okay, there are different applications that are useful but for the purpose of collaboration, purpose of very effective online communication, we need something more. So we built ClickMeeting for our own purposes and then we thought, Hey, there are many companies like ours that need support in online communications so let’s just get it out there. And this is how it started, pretty much.
– That’s how the best stories always start is like, I need it for me so badly. Oooh, actually this is pretty good. Other people might need that too. Let’s give it to other people.
– Yes. So nine years later, I’m still with ClickMeeting and I’ve been saying to all people I recruit, I’ve been here for nine years and there is no single day there is the same. So every single day brings something exciting and, yeah, gives you the opportunity to be part of the product that support people in their daily business activities.
– Yeah, I mean as I was sharing with you before, ClickMeeting was the very first webinar platform I used when I run my very first webinar six years ago, oh my God. And I have to thank you because I didn’t have the money to pay to do the upgrades and all the other stuff and I started with the free version off of ClickMeeting that was availabe and that was great for me to start getting out there and learning how this webinar world works. So I know that now there’ve been many changes since I use it six years ago to now. So let’s explore a bit what’s available on the platform for ClickMeeting because there are a lot of people that are listening here that are running webinars or interested in running webinars. So let’s see what’s available in the platform and then we’re going to discuss what are some of the best practises which we can do on webinars.
– Absolutely. So just back to the history a little bit. I remember when we were started off with ClickMeeting and then it was all about audio and video and then we came to the point that okay, we need to have this feature, this feature and, you know, we were building up with the features. And obviously, everything based on customer feedback, what people are sort of expecting us to deliver because in the first couple of years, we were sort of gathering loads of feedback and we were working closely with some of our customers in terms of what’s needed for business to actually run effective online communication with audio and video, just remote working and stuff. So back then, the ecosystem and customers’ needs were totally and absolutely different to what we have now because we obviously do have, at the moment, what we have is Facebook Live, YouTube Live and then coming into LinkedIn Live events. So we have to come across that as well and make it work. Like, be as a competitor or make it work together. People want to, when we build a product, when we sort of thinking about what our customers need, obviously, based on their opinion on the feedback, we’re improving the product but people want to save money. People want to run their business effectively. They want to communicate effectively. They want to earn money, finally, increase their revenue. So we have to make sure that our product meets that need. So, obviously last year was sort of one of our biggest year in terms of features. We introduced on-demand webinars, when you can record a webinar and then distribute it as an on-demand content for further purposes of distribution, promotion and building customer retention, a lead building base. Then we introduced paid webinars features, when organisers can charge their attendees to access their webinars. And last year, one of our clients charged $450 per ticket for their webinar, earning $43,000 for one webinar.
– I know.
– Now you’re talking my language.
– This is what people expect. People, they know they’ve got their know-how, They’ve got their expertise. They want to monetize it. The application, the software has to give it a chance. Then, obviously Facebook and YouTube Live, we were getting loads of questions in terms of, Okay, why do I need applications like ClickMeeting when I’ve got Facebook and YouTube Live? Of course, you may say that, Yeah, I’ve got Facebook Live, that’s enough. But what about statistics? What about the sort of lead nurturing and all that, moderation of chats, surveys and all that. But, then if you comply it with ClickMeeting, with Facebook and YouTube Live, then you’re expanding your reach so you are in different channels. So it’s all about that, being in one place and streaming to many.
– Absolutely. And so you have the feature as well if you’re going live on ClickMeeting, that automatically gets shared on Facebook and YouTube Live? Do you have that feature as well?
– You choose Facebook or YouTube. It doesn’t amount to do them simultaneously but you can run your webinar from ClickMeeting and then stream into Facebook.
– Absolutely love it and, in fact, as you’re saying, the more places you are in, then the better it is. But I teach a lot of webinars. I do a lot of webinars myself. I teach people how to do webinars as well and one of the things that, this is one of the question people ask me as well, Why should I invest in a webinar platform instead of just using what’s available for free with YouTube Live and Facebook? Is it about context, which is different as well? I mean, when you are on a webinar platform, you have no other distraction around you. Everything is focused on you and the actions to take on the webinar. You know, when you are on Facebook, you have the notification of your friends popping up. When you are on your YouTube, you have the notification of the new video that is going down. You have the other recommended video on the side. You have a lot, if someone sends you a message on Facebook, and so now you’re stopping the recording of what you’re watching to answer to your friend. And suddenly, you find yourself out of that webinar so I think there is a purpose for YouTube Live, for Facebook Live, but for conversion, you need the attention first.
– Absolutely. And engagement. You have to engage people
– If you’re not engaged in the webinar as an organiser, as a host, then you cannot expect your attendees, your audience to be engaged as well.
– Yeah, don’t be boring. Guys, please stop.
– Content is something different because content is a pain in terms of, okay, there are different barriers in terms of running webinars because you may be perfect in going public speeches offline but then, when it comes to webinar, you have to, you know, you’ve got chat, you’ve got survey to run, you’ve got YouTube video to show. It obviously, it requires loads of coordination from you plus the barrier of being in front of camera and seeing yourself. And then the hard thing is that you don’t see reaction of people, so you don’t see how they, on the other side, react to your content, to your presentation. So, it’s very, very important to engage them, to make them collaborate in terms of different whiteboards, chats, polls and surveys, tests, et cetera, et cetera so yeah,
– But it’s powerful.
– Absolutely. It’s a new skill. It’s a new skill to learn. I remember when I started, ’cause I came from the event space so I was running a lot of events and always being on stage and then from there, I said, Okay, let me start doing the webinar and it is a complete different energy that you’re bringing to the table. Actually, you need to be even more over the top because, you know, people can leave that webinar with the click of a button. So if you are boring as hell, people are not going to stay. You can have the best content in the world but you’re not engaging and you’re not getting people to comment, to respond, to click on the surveys and so on, then people are just going to get bored and leave and find something more interesting to do so.
– Become interesting on camera but then it’s a mastery, it’s a skill. You do your first one, you do your second one, do your third one.
– And you’re becoming a star.
– And then you’re becoming a star, absolutely. And then you become like Agnes here, right?
– I’m not star, no, definitely not.
– Absolutely you are. So make sure–
– If you think about it, there is, I do apologise, there are plenty of contents. What I noticed over those years, when we, because we running our own webinars as well, the demo webinars, getting started for all as on onboarding process. Then we do it as part of retention and prospecting as well, and lead nurturing, we do webinars with influencers, with people who’ve been there, done that, and they know how to do it and, you know, inspire our customers. And I remember back in, like a couple of years back, when we were organising the webinar, we had a couple of thousand registrants and 40% turn up rate from those registrants.
– The good old days.
– The good old days, absolutely. Well, it’s about 15% and it’s still good but, yeah, what we do now is obviously there are plenty of webinars. If you want to attend all those interesting webinars, you wouldn’t do anything else. So what we do is, obviously, we record each webinar and then we encourage people to register to get recording. So it’s a pretty clear message, register to get a recording. And obviously, people use the chance to attend webinar, to participate in live Q & A sessions because they’re priceless.
– Yes, I agree with you. I agree with you. We have, I think it’s increased the number of people watching replays and less number of people watching live webinars. But people that are at live webinars, then they are way more engaged and also you can use the live webinar as an opportunity to answer question, do Q & A sessions, something that, you know, someone is missing out if they are just watching the replay, for example, where they don’t have actually the chance to ask a question in person. Now, in terms of a curiosity, do you also have the possibility to do kind of hybrid webinars?
– Which is?
– Which is, well no, you play a video of the webinar and you are there interacting in the chat with the different participants. Is it something that you recommend doing, that you don’t recommend doing? What’s your take on that?
– Well, it’s a solution and obviously it all goes toward automation, automating your business, automating communication, being still authentic and being yourself. But we are working on automated webinars, where you’ll have a possibility to put your webinar into scenario and put it on autoplay but then still being able to interact and chat, so yeah, if you’re sort of one-man company and you don’t have, because what we normally do is there’s a host, a presenter, and, you know, there’s an interaction here, so and they don’t look at the chat. There’s a dedicated person that sort of collaborate on chat and we normally recommend that, have someone on chat to moderate it, to respond to messages, and then put all these interesting questions into the Q & A because there is an easy way to just drag and drop a question to a main view for the presenter to be able to answer the question at any time of the webinar. But now, given the possibility to put your webinar on a scenario where it’s like first presentation and record video of you presenting and then putting into live webinar and then but still, you, as a moderator of chat, that’s something that’s in development right now. Yes, like I said, we used to have email marketing. Now we’ve got marketing automation. We used to have webinars, then webinar automation will come to play as well. I believe so.
– Absolutely. It’s an industry which is consistently evolving.
– Right, right.
– I like also to for people to test both things because something that I found really pretty useful in business is actually to do the opposite of trends. For example, where everyone is going towards automation, I would add more personal touch or where everyone is going to do more line, I will do more event. If someone is doing more events, I will do more stuff online because it means there are just more people available in that other media. So and this about testing and finding out then from this practise is what works with you and your audience so you might want to start a webinar, end with series of webinar that are live. And then do a series of webinars that are automated and then see which ones then that they are converting the most and knowing that, you know, doing automated webinar, you will have a lower conversion than a live webinar, generally, but at the same time, you’re not there delivering it. You know, it just takes less time from you so.
– Yeah, absolutely. Depends what purpose of webinar you’re running as well. We’ve got groups of customers that sort of specific, into sort of live demos and they’ve got product that they gather their customer and it’s in a particular sales webinar so they aim to sell the most by selling their product online. But then, obviously, if you want to retain your customers, you have to feed them with great content, which is webinar, of course. So there’s no sort of one-size-fits-all. So you have to see yourself, if you’re going to engage in webinars, you have to see what works for you, what doesn’t. I remember what we did when we were launching ClickMeeting, we invited, we organised a press conference for different bloggers, influencers, and people from press and we did it on ClickMeeting and it was, well, it was 2011 so it was ages ago but if you think about that, but it worked out great. Now, it’s nothing innovative to be honest.
– And I was like, Really? It’s like, That’s what people do now.
– Yeah, absolutely. So, it’s, you know, trying, trying in to trying out. So I believe webinars are hard but very, very exciting and very effective.
– So let’s look at making those hard webinar a bit easier. So in terms of your experience, what are the dos and don’ts right now in 2019 for webinars? So what are the things you should focus on and the things you should avoid? Based on the data or the statistics that you have.
– Dos and don’ts, it’s very, it depends really from the perspective of what webinar you’re running and obviously if you’re doing sort of a lead nurturing, the content for the webinar would look differently. But you have to, the fact is, you cannot jump into webinar and think it will be successful. You have to prepare for it. But you’ll be surprised what we have many people doing, like, I jumped on a webinar. It didn’t work so I’m not gonna do it again. But, yeah, preparation, content, promotion, what we normally do, we start promoting our webinar with influencers, experts from the field about three weeks before it happens so.
– So give yourself a good lead time for promotion.
– Absolutely, you know, just for the promo campaign to sort of propagate and people being able to see it and plan it as well, because that’s also important and for you to be able to sort of see it and promote it. But also what’s very important is that, you know, having that distinction between what your content is and what you’re trying to achieve and who you’re talking to and make that work together because it has to. Otherwise, your people will get bored and leave the webinar room. Also, I remember when we used to do our State of Webinars, which we did, in fact, this year as well, last week we launch it. But I remember a couple of years back when there was sort of selected best day to run a webinar. It was always Wednesday or Thursday. Now, it really, every single day is good as long as your content is engaging and is authentic and it has that personal touch, as you mentioned before. Also, in terms of times of webinar, you know, you have to distinct that people do have work because I remember once we did webinar at 11:00 a.m. It’s like, okay, it’s not even lunchtime almost but still people are at work so they might not be able attend and recording of webinar was just sort of coming, coming live. So but now you have to bear in mind that people work, people travel and obviously giving that flexibility that they can listen to webinar while they drive is also a big opportunity as well. But make sure your webinar is engaging. Make sure you share your expertise and not just think that you’re sharing your expertise. You have to be honest. You have to be authentic for people to buy it.
– Yeah, absolutely. And I love what you said about don’t expect that the first webinar will be successful. It might happen, never know. I had the clients that their first webinar were successful. And I have clients that the first webinar were not successful. Myself, it took me fifteen webinars before I made my first sale. Fifteen bloody, frickin’ webinars and it shows the power of persistence because I knew it was something that works. A lot of people, they say, Oh well, it works for other but it doesn’t work for me. Well, it doesn’t work for you because you’re not good as the others.
– So what do you do? You become, you do, you train and then from there, I always made sales every single webinar I did or have an incredibly high retention rate because I’ve learned how to be more engaging, how to be funnier, how to get the people interested, not only in the content or creating, you know, the right balance of content. ‘Cause I’m sure that you’ve seen those webinars where it’s like, Oh my God, there is too much and the speaker is speaking at 5,000 miles an hour and you don’t really understanding what they’re doing. They’re just flicking slide to slide to slide and doesn’t give you the opportunity actually to absorb the content and to ask that question if you want to ask that question.
– That’s very important, yeah.
– So very powerful, powerful, I’d love to see–
– If you think about this, I remember when we started off ClickMeeting and doing any marketing activities. When we’re starting off, we had no data at all so it was just picking different marketing activities. Okay, we know that we are webinar product and then we were matching activities and see if it works, if not. Same here, you have to work out yourself if this form of communication, this form of selling yourself, your expertise, your product works for you and it works. So because there are statistic that proves that but you just need to work out the best way to sell yours.
– Absolutely, I agree with you. And also, if not everyone wants to use webinars to sell, you might use other ways to sell and get your customer attention and getting people attending your webinars maybe from your online courses that you’re launching. So these are different ways which you can use webinars. They’re not only just sales webinar for conversion but there is education, there is retention, as you mention earlier, so I–
– It’s a process, it’s a process.
– It’s absolutely a process so, Agnes, I love this interview. Now we are doing the last part of the show and this is called Lifting the Veil.
– Oh my God.
– Oh my God, what is that?
– I was not prepared for this.
– I was not prepared for this. Surprise, surprise. So we are lifting the veil, Agnes, and it’s the part of the show where I ask every guest to share an app or a tool or a book or something that makes your life or business easier. Something that you’re using maybe daily or every now and then. What is that for you? Do you have something in mind?
– Ah, I’m very inspired by Simon Sinek and his speeches. So if I’m losing my how, why and everything, I’m always going back to Simon and it helps me a lot and it’s very inspirational too.
– Do you have any favourite book or you just mainly watch the online video content or?
– Starting With Why
– Sort of that, I’ve got it next to my bed and it sort of doesn’t leave my bookshelf.
– Yep, great book. Absolutely recommend it too. Read or listen Start With Why, Simon Sinek. We’ll put the links in the resources so amazing, amazing resource. I had the privilege to do an event in London, which was free during Simon Sinek, absolutely.
– Jealous now.
– Absolutely amazing. All right, guys, thank you very much for listening. Thank you very much for being on this show, Agnes. You’ve been absolutely amazing here. If people want to reach out to you and get in touch or try ClickMeeting to see how they can use it in their business, what’s the best way?
– Well, our URL to our services: clickmeeting.com but I very much encourage to visit our blog. When recently we sort of released State of Webinar 2019 as an infographic. That includes plenty of very useful facts about webinars, webinar industry and online meetings so feel invited.
– Get on their website and do you still have a free trial for the platform or?
– Absolutely, 30 days. 30 days free trial so sign up on clickmeeting.com.
– Yeah, I highly recommend you guys. It is a great way to, if you’ve never used it, to get out there, if you’ve never done a webinar before and then you can test your content, you can test your material and also if you have been running webinars as well, you can try different platforms. I love to test different things to see, okay, what’s new in this platform? What’s new in the other one? So definitely give it a go. Agnes, thank you very much for being on this show. I really appreciate it.
– Thank you very much. Thank you, you’re a great host.
– Oh, you’re welcome, you’re welcome.
– Ladies and gentlemen, thank you for listening or watching. Make sure you subscribe right now so you don’t miss any other amazing episode like the one that we had today with Agnes and also, leave us a review. Let us know what did you enjoy the most about this show, leaving us a review there on iTunes and if you send me a screenshot of the review at firstname.lastname@example.org, I’ll send you something special. Woohoo, oh lucky you.
– Exciting. All right, so it’s all for me and Agnes and always remember that together we grow exponentially. Bye for now.