This Thursday I am presenting a free webinar. The fact that it is a webinar is relevant and important, since my topic is "Best Practices for Demand Generation Webinars." I will be able to demonstrate concepts within the context and framework of the medium I am talking about. People who want to create better webinars get some incremental added value just from knowing that the presentation is in webinar format.
In my case (to mangle McLuhan's oft-misinterpreted phrase) my message is all about the medium. Your situation is probably very different. I don't know what your business is. Maybe you are a software vendor or a hardware manufacturer. Perhaps you provide professional services or consulting. You might be a lawyer, you might be in charge of a governmental department, or you might own a bakery. Whatever your business niche, you plan webinars in order to reach an audience interested in that subject area. Conversely, potential audiences are interested in the value they can get from listening to you… Not in the way you plan to bring it to them.
That's why I grimace when I see companies promoting their presentations with big text trumpeting "FREE WEBINAR!" or creating web pages on their corporate website labeled "WEBINARS." It puts the focus on the mechanical transmission medium rather than on the content.
You are likely to have better promotional success by putting the focus back on the value for attendees. Instead of "UPCOMING WEBCAST," try something like "ONLINE EDUCATION" or "LIVE TRAINING" or "EXCLUSIVE INFORMATION." In A/B comparison tests, MailChimp found that web page click-throughs and webinar attendance both increased when they replaced the word WEBINAR in their online navigation menus [Click for study… Paid membership required].
It's always tricky for me to make this point, because I do indeed focus on the medium when I promote my webinars and webcasts. If you are in the webinar business, you can do the same thing. But if webinars are just a tool you use for business communication, get the focus off of the tool and onto the business. I bet you'll see an uptick in demand.