Sean Donahue

Do Webinar Attendees Take a Summer Vacation?

June 15th, 2008

I recently interviewed a B-to-B marketer who had completely revamped her webinar strategy to generate a 400% increase in attendance. One change they made was to eliminate events in July and August, when they’d seen generally low interest from their prospects and customers.

Her theory: People tend to take a vacation in the summer, or else find the nice weather just too enticing to sacrifice an extra hour in front of a computer.

But do webinars held during summer months really underperform events held during less glorious times of the year? Benchmark data on the best months to host a webinar are tough to find, but a report last year compiled by webinar and webcasting service provider On24 seems to challenge the conventional wisdom about the summer doldrums.

On24’s analysis of some 2,000 events hosted by B-to-B publishers found that webinars held in August had the third-highest rate of conversion from registrant to attendee (57.14%). June events scored the second-highest conversion rate (58.43%). To be fair, though, July events recorded the second-lowest conversion rate, around 50%.

The sample in this survey was B-to-B publishers, meaning that other industries might find different results. These metrics also don’t compare the total number of attendees from month to month. Perhaps summer events do attract a comparatively smaller number of attendees. But it seems that people who aren’t on vacation in August and do register for an event during that month are keenly interested in the content you have to offer.

So, if you’ve already scheduled webinars this summer or had planned to skip them, expecting a low turnout, maybe it’s time to plan a formal test of webinar response and conversion rates? As we have seen time and again, a marketer can’t always go by their gut instincts. Data is always more reliable.

Categories: Business Technology Marketing, Business To Business, Online Marketing Tags:

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