When qualifying marketing leads via a webinar, you need to take into account both the content of the webinar and the behavior of the registrants; both are as important as the demographic information of those registrants.

The webinar content is what determines where the webinar falls in the B2B marketing lead generation funnel. That is, the content will indicate which stage the potential buyer is in and what they are interest in. And behavior will indicate which webinar registrants are simply contact acquisitions and which ones are truly Sales ready. Knowing the difference will improve the quality of leads sent to sales and build the sales team's trust in Marketing's leads.

The interactive nature of webinars offer B2B marketers a unique opportunity to qualify leads, on the spot, using real-time behavior. Marketers who use every possible opportunity to measure webinar attendee interest during the event are gathering valuable information about the registrants they've attracted; as a result, those marketers will drive better results.

1. Content determines buyer stage

Webinars are selected as a marketing tactic because they offer a rich and engaging medium. The webinar content—thought leadership, education, product demonstration, competitive comparison, product training—determines where to plug it into the marketing mix, based on the buyer's cycle.

Some content, like best-practices and thought leadership, are best used for contact acquisition and do not generate sales-ready leads. A signup for product-demo or competitive-comparison webinar, however, could indicate shopping behavior and readiness for Sales follow up.

The trick here is to understand what the needs of a typical buyer are and to deliver the necessary content at the right moment.

2. Content indicates solution of interest

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Shelby Britton is senior product marketing manager at Adobe, where she implements programs in field marketing, demand generation, and product marketing for Adobe Connect. She also blogs about webinar best-practice tips.

LinkedIn: Shelby Britton

Twitter: @ShelbyBritton