Online training is one of the newest content tools available for modern digital marketers. Traditionally, digital marketers have relied on formats like eBooks and webinars for lead generation, while training managers have interacted with customers only after contracts are signed.
In today's world, 57% of the purchase decision is complete before a potential buyer ever contacts a sales rep. As a result, innovative digital marketers know that providing online training is a powerful tool to generate interest and awareness early in the sales funnel.
On-demand training is a particularly effective delivery method because it is available immediately for the prospective customer, no matter the time zone or geography. In addition, if the training is designed appropriately, your prospect will return to your website multiple times to resume the training, which provides you with additional opportunities to engage.
Whether you are a financial institution offering consumer homebuying classes, or an enterprise software provider creating an ecosystem of skilled and certified talent, on-demand training is a scalable and effective way to generate leads for your organization. Here are 3 objectives to keep in mind when designing your campaigns.
1. Capture lead data
At the end of the day, digital marketers need to collect and score lead data. To accomplish this, you'll need to capture information about the person taking the training. You can collect this during course registration, or in a demographic survey that is part of the actual course.
The minimum information collected is typically name and email address. Depending on how your organization qualifies leads, you can add additional fields like phone number, job title, company name, and address. While it's tempting to collect as much information as possible, remember that each field added is also likely to decrease your signup conversion rate.
2. Provide valuable content
The first rule of digital marketing is to provide valuable content in exchange for your prospect's contact information. This is rarely a sales pitch or product demo. Instead, put yourself in your prospect's shoes. What are the questions they are facing on a day-to-day basis? What do they need to understand about the industry in order to make an educated buying decision? Are your prospects required to take continuing education on an ongoing basis?
The more relevant content you can provide, the more you are perceived as an industry expert and thought leader. Don't worry about selling your product - that's ultimately up to your sales team. Your objective is to provide a training course that's enticing and valuable for your potential customers.
3. Track results
On-demand training provides an opportunity to collect much more interesting data than traditional eBooks and webinars can provide. If your Learning Management System (LMS) provides reporting like Skilljar's analytics, you'll know which courses your prospect has registered for, how much was completed, what quiz scores they obtained, how long they engaged with your content, and how often they came back.
From a business perspective, you'll want to track which prospects ultimately convert to customers, how long it took them to purchase, and how successful they ultimately are. To accomplish this, your LMS should be able to automate sending lead data to your sales and marketing software, such as Salesforce and Marketo.
Attracting new customers is a key part of your organization's business activities. By offering on-demand training to expand your lead generation program, you can scalably and effectively educate potential customers about your offerings. To maximize your business impact, remember to capture lead data, provide valuable content, and track results as part of your campaigns.