Paid vs. Free to Attend Virtual Events

Posted by: The BeaconLive Marketing Team

Webinar invitations seem to be flooding the Web, all offering valuable information. The number one question people tend to ask themselves, which is also a major deciding factor as to whether or not they’ll attend, is “Does the webinar cost anything?” If so, people then wonder if the content is worth paying for. Even though paid webinars are typically not very pricey, free webinars inevitably seem safer and more convenient. But, do free webinars really offer more value than paid webinars? Which is a better option when it comes to reaching your audience? Furthermore, does more attendees mean quality attendees? Here, we’ll compare and discuss the two options.

Averaging 54 live attendees at a time, according to e3Marketing, webinars allow you to reach people all around the world simultaneously, which means greater exposure and, inevitably, brand recognition. Offering webinars is a tactic that supports long-term growth. It begins and strengthens relationships with prospects. So, the more people you reach, the more robust growth your company will realize in the long-term. 

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However, it’s crucial to be reaching the right people, those whom would gain the most value from the content being offered, to increase your chances of generating leads and customers. According to a study conducted by Bain and Company, a 5% increase in customer retention can increase profits by 25% - 125%, so this factor is clearly very important for business. 


So, how can you ensure that you’re gaining quality webinar attendees? Free webinars are bound to give you more leads and webinar attendees than paid webinars. If consumers feel they can get valuable information without having to pay, they will do it. This makes sense, especially in comparison to e-commerce in general, because, according to a Forrester study, 11% of adults admit to abandoning a shopping cart because the website asked for too much information or required registration. When a webinar is free, it is simply easier for people to attend. Free webinars may give your business thousands of leads along with their contact information, but does more always mean better? 


When it comes to paid webinars, even though you will generate less leads, you are more likely to gain higher quality leads. If the attendees are willing to pay for your webinar, they probably will be more likely to pay for your products and services in the future. Having leads who are willing to pay can increase your sales in the long run if they ever are in the market for your products and services. Also, if they feel that the webinar was worth their money, they are more likely to pay for another webinar or valuable resource from your company in the future. 


Webinars are beneficial for your business, regardless of how they’re accessed, which is why only 32% of companies are not running any webinars (e3webcasting). When deciding whether to offer paid or free webinars, consider your company’s size, marketing goals, and other key factors and choose the method that makes the most sense. Is one option better than the other? That’s for you to determine with these considerations in mind. Remember that less is sometimes more – and I’m not talking about the price. Quality over quantity attendees may be your key to webinar success.

Virtual Event Platform Comparison

So now that you understand paid vs. free to attend virtual events, take the next step and explore the capabilities of various Full Service providers. 


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