I have been working with a client who is offering a series of educational webinars for existing customers and potential sales prospects. He has a lot of great information to present in the target area of expertise.
But we have been struggling with the end of the webinars. The goal is more aligned with "content marketing" than direct "lead generation." Therefore we are not driving people to a specific call to action such as filling out an order form or calling a sales representative.
I keep pushing him to close with a statement of why the information is valuable for the audience and what they should do with it. I ask him to define why he is giving the webinar. He says, "Because I am tired of answering these basic questions over and over again for each company we contact. This is stuff they should all know, but they don't. The education is the purpose."
For a few audience members, that is actually enough. They truly believe in the Animal House college motto: "Knowledge Is Good." But for most business people carving an hour out of their work day to attend a webinar, information for its own sake isn't enough. They need help in completing the link between knowledge and practical value.
At the end of an educational webinar, your job is not to create a summary list of bullets restating the facts you just presented. Your job is to help your attendees want to remember and apply the information. You do that by helping them find the value and the personal impact of the information for themselves.
Your audience should know something they didn't know before. They should believe in the power and value of the information. And they should be ready to apply it in some way. There are your summary bullets. Help them build that three-level connection in their minds:
"So where does that leave us? You now have a better understanding of how cold fusion-powered perpetual motion devices work. You have seen why it has been so hard for companies to properly set up cold fusion in their employee break rooms, but how valuable the technology is when correctly managed and applied to perpetual motion. I hope you now feel ready to kick start a cold fusion project in your own company, perhaps starting with the perpetually-spinning top trick."
Building out the Know-Believe-Apply linkage in an explicit way ensures that you are seen as having provided value. Don't trust that your audience will make the connection for themselves.