We’ve got a wealth of content out there around conferencing, but only recently did we say hang on, as conference call providers, have we ever produced a definitive guide? Well, the wait is over (yippee!), we know you’re all buzzing to read this one.

Let’s start with some straight up product promotion. At PowWowNow we believe in simple solutions. Our conference calling product was designed from the ground up with simplicity being a core value. That’s why all you need to join a call is an email address, phone and PIN. Oh, and we won’t charge you a thing when you make UK calls using our ‘0330’ number. Now that’s out of the way, let’s get in to the what, how, when, where and why’s.

What is conference calling?

Here’s one we made earlier. ‘Conferencing calling is a term used to describe three or more people on a phone call. It’s all pretty simple really, if you’re at home in your PJs and so and so is in the office, whilst other so and so is in a trendy café and final so and so is at an airport, you can still get the job done quickly and effectively by hopping on a call. It’s not restricted to three people just made our example more manageable.’[1]

Setting up and starting a conference call

  1. Set up your call
    The first step and quite a crucial one is to set up your call, without doing this you may find yourself alone on the call for quite a while. Choose a date and time that works for everyone, copy and paste your invite details (PIN and dial-in number) to either a calendar invite or SMS, whichever you prefer, and hit send.
  2. Start your call
    Now everyone has the invite all they need to do is dial the number, enter the PIN and they’re in. We did say it was simple.

How do I schedule a conference call?

We offer several scheduling tools to make setting up a meeting oh so seamless. If you find yourself using Outlook a lot, then you’ll want to download our Outlook Plugin. This can easily be downloaded in your PowWowNow Account, on the ‘Schedule a call’ page.

As well as offering an Outlook Plugin, we also offer browser extensions for Chrome and Firefox (also downloadable in your PowWowNow Account). These work in the same way and allow you to easily schedule meeting through Google Calendar.

How to make a conference call from an iPhone

The easiest way to use PowWowNow on iPhone is by downloading our App. With our App you can schedule meetings via email or SMS, view all your dial-in numbers and join your call without having to remember your PIN.

Alternatively, if you’re not into your Apps, then you can always call the provided dial-in number, enter your PIN and join the call that way.

 

How to make a conference call on Android

Guess what? The easiest way to use PowWowNow on Android is by downloading our App. At the sake of repeating ourselves, with the App you can schedule meetings via email or SMS, view all your dial-in numbers and join your call without having to remember your PIN.

Again, if you’re not the Appy type, then you can always just dial the number and enter your PIN.

A ‘group call’ on WhatsApp

They call it a ‘Group call’ but it’s essentially a conference call. If you’re loyal to WhatsApp and it’s your app of choice, then you can hold a conference call using it. Tap ‘Calls’ at the bottom once in the app, then click the telephone icon in the top right. Select ‘New group call’ then choose up to 7 people you want on your call/video call.

Speaking of video calls we offer a 14 day free trial on ours, check it out if you’re ready for your next group call.

A definitive guide

One more time for those at the back, conference calling with PowWowNow is well simple! That’s why our definitive guide can all fit in one handy blog post.

[1] https://www.powwownow.co.uk/conference-call/what-is-conferencing-calling

We’ll try to keep the sci-fi tropes to a minimum when looking at trends that are forever changing the landscape of how we work. With the past few months ushering in a new way of working for many, it begs the questions, will this forever change the landscape of the office and what will this landscape look like? What exciting tech innovations are on the horizon? Are we on the cusp of virtual offices? Let’s get answering.

Office set-up

With coronavirus resulting in obvious implications on how we view hygiene and the measures we put in place, the move towards open plan offices could see a temporary halt. Offices are returning to a layout that combats the spread of the virus, which means separate cubicles and individual workspaces. We’d like to think this is only temporary, but it has led many to seriously question hygiene measures in the office and this will influence future office designs. Assuming it is only temporary, how will our changing views of the office shape the layout? The office is now viewed as somewhere to collaborate. Individual work can take place at home, or in a café or wherever you feel productive, point being the office is no longer considered the haven for productivity.

So, with this view in mind, what might the office set-up of the future look like? Offices will become much less cluttered and much more efficient. With this we can also expect the office to become more comfortable and less formal. They will be designed with collaboration as a key driving force. As our understanding of how we can improve collaboration develops, so will the changes to office layout. Overall, the office set-up of the future will mimic the changing attitudes towards work, with more people choosing to work flexibly the office will have to reflect this also by creating a space that workers can dip in and out of.

A more sustainable office

No doubt, one of the biggest trends that we’re already seeing, and we’ll only see more of is the shift towards more sustainable offices. I think it’s almost universally accepted that climate change is a big problem and for companies to attract the best talent they’ll need to show they’re taking it seriously. Take a look at 10 of the most eco-friendly offices in London and you’ll see just some of the innovativeness on display today, driven by the trend to build more sustainable spaces.

So, what sort of sustainability measures can we expect businesses to adopt in the future? Well, we can expect to see a lot more nature being incorporated when building our offices. This type of design has a lit name as well, ‘biophilic office design’. It involves bringing the outdoors into the workplace, leading to better staff wellbeing and increased productivity. Although, not every business is in the privileged position to incorporate a huge tree in their kitchen.

What we’ll likely see is many businesses taking steps to make their current office more eco-friendly. This includes doing away with plastic, which can make a huge difference on how one company impacts the environment. Take Goldman Sachs for example, they eliminated plastic in there London offices, home to 6000 employees.[1] With such big companies setting a strong precedent regarding sustainability measures, it’s expected that we’ll see more and more offices make similar changes.

Another change is to make the office more energy efficient. This can be as simple as switching out the light bulbs you use, or as complex as decking out the entire outside of your office with solar panels. Fact is, we’ll see more and more offices having sustainability as a priority if they want to stay in line with the changing times.

Office tech

Just like the layout of the office, tech in the office will be geared towards efficiency. We’ll take a brief look at some of the more exciting innovations we’re likely to see soon and how they fit in with the working world.

The internet of things

There’s a term that’s often thrown about and can sound quite vague, that term is the internet of things. So, what does that mean? Simply summarised, it means greater connectivity across all smart devices. We’ve already seen this grow exponentially in recent years and this growth will only continue. You’ll see more and more tech in the office that works in synergy with other tech, in turn creating a more efficient system and improved collaboration (that word again).

Virtual reality (VR)

Picture having a projection of a desk in front of you, whilst sitting at the airport. Virtual reality (VR) will let us bring a desk wherever we go, bringing a whole new dimension to what it means to work remotely. Sure, at first, you might look and feel a bit silly putting on a massive headset to tackle a meaty spreadsheet but like any new form of tech, you’ll get used to it. Also, as tech develops, it often becomes more sophisticated, before you know it all we’ll need is a pair of specs to enter a virtual space. You don’t have to be alone in this virtual space as well, with VR comes the possibility for shared virtual spaces. We’re not too sure about completely replacing face-to-face interactions with virtual ones but the implications for this sort of tech are exciting, nonetheless.

Augmented reality (AR)

We can expect to see a rise in the adoption of augmented reality (AR). There’s been whisperings of utilising AR for many years now, yet it still hasn’t been adopted commercially. This is expected to change as the tech improves, becoming more widely available and use cases increase. So, what is AR? AR is different to virtual reality; in that it uses a mixture of virtual and real-life reality, you still with us? Picture it being used in a meeting setting, you could have a physical meeting room but half of the people attending the meeting are there as a virtual avatar and the other half are really there (trippy, aye).[2]

Artificial intelligence (AI)

We’ll also see an increase in artificial intelligence (AI). One of the main arguments behind AI is that it drastically improves efficiency. Just think about the amount of time you waste on carrying our menial tasks that could in theory, easily be carried out by AI. This will free up more of your time to carry out more worthwhile work, becoming more productive. Many people fear that AI will one day make human work redundant (rather sombre we know) but it can also be used to support human work.[3]

We’ve only started to scratch the surface of what the office of the future might look like and the future is looking exciting! For the meantime why don’t you make the most of the tech of today by checking out our conference call, video call and webinar products!

[1] https://www.raconteur.net/business-innovation/future-workplace-2019/eco-friendly-office

[2] https://www.oktra.co.uk/insights/office-futures-our-top-5-tech-trends-2020/

[3] https://www.wired.com/story/ai-coming-most-mind-numbing-office-tasks/

We’re not talking literally here, of course they work without video, that’s the essence of a phone call. What we’re getting at is why you’d choose a good old-fashioned call over a video call. We’re not knocking video calls, there are plenty of scenarios for when to use them, but if you find yourself feeling fatigued and want a break from your webcam, a call is your best bet. Here are just some of the reasons why conference calls work without video.

Simple and seamless

Sometimes the simplest solution is the best solution. Joining a conference call is faff free. All you need to do is dial a number, enter a PIN and you’re in (poet and we didn’t even know it). This is ideal for those issues that need a speedy solution. Scrap the back and forth emails which only seem to confuse things more and # it out on a call, saving you all valuable time and energy.

Really reliable

Well, we can only speak for ourselves here but being a telco in our own right means that calls with us are very reliable. If your internet is struggling and causing all sorts of havoc, then you can always rely on a trusty call. Make sure you do have phone service though, otherwise you’re in a bit of a pickle. As well as being reliable, the audio quality is top notch, ‘sorry didn’t quite catch that’ be gone!

They won’t break the bank

Conference calling is very cost efficient. With our service offering an 0330 number, we won’t charge you a thing for calls made within the UK. Plus, the minutes you use are often included in your mobile/landline plan (winning). There’s not much more to say on this point other than they’re very cheap. Next.

Feeling camera shy?

We’ve all had it, there are just certain days that you don’t want to turn the video on. You may have not got dressed, couldn’t be bothered to comb your hair, forgot to tidy your work area, whatever the reason they’re all valid. On those days, it’s fine to dial in rather than turn on the webcam. If you’re wfh and your colleagues insist, then just blame the WIFI (no harm done). Obviously if it’s a super important meeting then you should probably get dressed, comb your hair, and tidy your work area but if it’s not essential to use video, then you can always dial in.

There you have it, just some of the reasons why conference calls work without video. Granted, not the most extensive list, both have pros and cons. Just know that they have stood the test of time for a reason, any glaring reasons we’ve missed? Feel free to let us know. In the meantime, why not hold a call to see for yourself?

With European Day of Languages coming up on the 26th of September, we’re celebrating by giving away five six-month video call licences. The rules are simple. We’ll post a picture, which will represent a common European phrase. All you need to do is guess right and you’ll be entered for a chance to win. Please note, there will be five winners in total, with one winner per picture, across both platforms.

To enter head over to our Instagram or LinkedIn page and comment with what you think the correct phrase is. The first image will be posted on the 21st of September, with following posts on the 22nd, 23rd, 24th and 25th of September.

If you guess the correct answer, you will only be eligible to win on one picture, on one platform, either Instagram or LinkedIn. You could win a six-month licence for our video call product, with winners selected at random.  All winners will be announced and contacted on the 28th of September.

So, get guessing, you’ve got nothing to lose!

T&Cs apply.

Terms & Conditions

  1. PowWowNow (the “Promoter”) is running a free prize draw (the “Promotion”) for the prize listed below (the “Prize”). For the promotion, participants who guess the correct phrase will enter a free prize draw with a chance to win a six month PowWowNow video call licence.
  2. Prize draw is only for UK residents who are 18 years or older.
  3. The Promotion will commence on the 21st September 2020 and the closing date of the Promotion is 11:59 pm (GMT) on the 26th September 2020.
  4. To qualify, participants must comment and guess the correct phrase through Instagram or LinkedIn, participants will only be allowed one guess per picture, either on Instagram or LinkedIn, not both.
  5. At the end of the entry period for the prize draw, the winners will be selected at random. Nominators and nominees will not receive a physical or virtual confirmation from PowWowNow of entry.
  6. Winner(s) will be informed of their win by direct message and will be asked to provide their first name, last name, email, company name and phone number. Each winner will have 72 hours to respond, the Promoter reserves the right to forfeit their prize and reallocate it to a reserve winner chosen by the Promoter if they do not respond within the allotted time.
  7. There are 5 prizes available, all PowWowNow video call licences, worth £60, due to the duration being 6 months, £10/month. Prizes are subject to availability, if the prize is no longer available we reserve the right to choose a different one for you.
  8. Prizes are non-transferable and there are no cash alternatives.
  9. The judges’ decision is final. Standard terms & conditions apply.
  10. Please note you can only enter once either through Instagram or LinkedIn. Entries from duplicate accounts will not be eligible.
  11. The Promoter is not responsible for competition entries, Instagram or LinkedIn responses or email notifications that are lost, damaged or delayed as a result of any network, computer hardware or software failure of any kind.
  12. The Promoter shall not be liable for any damage, loss, liability, or injury (save for personal injury or death caused by the Promoter’s negligence) caused by matters relating to this Prize Draw.

If you’re organising a conference call, the first thing on your personal agenda should be: Writing an Agenda. With an agenda, your call will be an efficient, productive and successful meeting. Without an agenda, conference calling becomes just another chat on the phone.

So if you’re fairly new to audio conferences, it will help to know how to create a call agenda.

Fortunately, PowWowNow doesn’t just have all the call services and apps covered. We also have the know-how to help you prepare an agenda to make every minute of your conference call count.

Why are we here?

Let’s not get into the meaning of life just now. But what about the purpose of your call? According to the Harvard Business Review, there are three reasons for meetings (and calls) to happen:

When you know how to create a call agenda, you know that what you’ll get from your call will be informative, will involve others, and will lead you to a result.

To make sure you start as you mean your conference to go on, your agenda will have three key components in addition to the topics for discussion. First, it will include the dial-in details (phone number, passcodes etc.) so they’re handy for participants.

Second, it will include the name, title and department or company of everyone taking part. When you’re not seeing each other in person, this helps to make everyone more comfortable on a call.

And third, it will include a timeline for the meeting, broken down by topic. Otherwise, there’s a danger your conference could drag on longer than it needs to, longer than is productive, and longer than participants have to spare.

Why agendas matter

An agenda does more than one job – and not all of them are the ones you might think of.

Obviously, when you create a call agenda, your main aim is to provide a framework for your call. But it does something else even before the call starts. It helps to get buy-in from the people who’ll be on the call. If you’ve included their topic, or assigned a topic to their name, they are more likely to come prepared.

An agenda also sets out expectations. It shows this isn’t “just another phone call” but an audio conference. It implies you expect participants to be prepared, be engaged, and be productive.

Get your agenda wrong and people might zone out of your conference before they’ve even dialled in. Get it right, and you’ll get the information, input and decisions you’re looking for – and all in double-quick time.

So even before the call, make sure you give all invitees a chance to have input. Ask around for topics they would like to see on the agenda. Then assign each topic on the agenda to a named person. This gives them a heads-up that they need to come prepared, and means someone will guide the topic so it doesn’t deteriorate into a general – and generally fruitless – discussion.

How you phrase the topics on the agenda will also make a difference to how well your conference call goes. Make each topic a question instead of a statement and you encourage people to come up with answers. And it’s answers you want your conference to produce. So, for example, instead of: “Sales projections for 2021”your topic could be: “How do we beat our 2020 sales?”

The ideal agenda

Created with input from invitees; circulated in advance; topics allocated to named participants; topics phrased as questions. You can download an example of the ideal call agenda here. But there’s something else which is important.

Flexibility.

Between circulating your agenda and the call itself, things might change: from something as small as – say – a product price increase to something as major as winning a big chunk of new business. If you don’t allow time (probably at the start of the conference) to at least mention these developments, they may distract people, drive agenda items off-topic, or even be overlooked when in fact they need to be considered.

To balance a timed schedule against flexibility, you could even make “Agenda revisions” your first topic on every agenda.

Lastly, remember to build in time at the other end of the agenda for feedback. Not on the topics covered, but on the conference itself. What worked well, what went wrong, what you could do next time to make it work better.

It’s far better to hear comments and criticism directly than second-hand. And that counts double for praise for your perfect conference call agenda.

With Coronavirus resulting in remote working, it’s an important time to look at how flexible working could be adopted for good. The younger generation recognise the need for a better work-life balance. Over 7 in 10 (73%) UK employees under thirty years of age say flexible working makes a job more attractive.

The older gen and flexible working

Companies can no longer neglect the need to offer flexible working if they’re hoping to attract the best young talent. Older generations have less of a need for flexible working, 65 per cent of over-45s would look for more flexibility as part of a new job, and 57 per cent of over 55’s feel flexible working options are important to their employment needs. This in no way indicates that it isn’t important to the older generation, just less of a necessity when compared to the younger generation.

Investing in software is key for flexible working

One of the biggest reasons for the reluctancy to embrace flexible working is the impact it would have on communications, with 45 per cent of decision makers believe that this would be a key issue. What we’ve seen in lockdown is more companies investing in remote working tools, such as conference calls and video calls. Although, with the increased usage and reliance on technology, there has inevitably been more issues with technology. This stresses the importance in investing in high quality and reliable tech (hint, like ours). Alongside offering flexible working, investing in the latest software is key for millennials.

What the future holds

So, what does this all mean and how will it impact the future of work? Well, it is further proof that companies need to seriously consider implementing flexible working into their policies. The demand is growing and this needs to be met by businesses.

Although results indicate that it is the younger generation that really dig flexible working, the current situation has seen a much more drastic shift towards remote working than anyone could have expected. This has quickly ousted the idea that remote working is detrimental to productivity, 62 per cent of decision makers said productivity levels have increased at their company since lockdown. With increased investment in technology 72 per cent of decision makers believe their business can now adequately support their staff when working remotely.

Businesses and employees alike have now experienced the benefits from working remotely. Increased productivity, a better work-life balance, improved mental and physical wellbeing to name a few. The younger generation represent the future and the current situation will result in a shift in attitudes around flexible and remote working. Like we have done for many years, we urge businesses to seize this as an opportunity and not lose out on talent by not meeting expectations!

Andrew Johnson, Managing Director of PowWowNow, said: “It is evident that many workers- and younger workers in particular- are looking for employers to provide more flexibility around the hours they expect staff to work, and where they can work from.

With businesses having adapted to the Coronavirus pandemic by investing in the technology needed to allow their employees to work away from the office, it is clear that the way forward is to embrace this shift towards more flexible working as we look to the years ahead. If companies are to regain strength following the pandemic, they will need to attract new talent by demonstrating they understand the move away from traditional working practices and are embracing change.”                  

Survey information

Our 2020 flexible working survey conducted in January found over two-thirds (67 per cent) of UK employees are currently not offered flexible working in their role, but wish it was available to them. It was surprising to see this reflected by UK businesses. Despite the demand from workers, our survey found that 40 per cent of workers are still not offered flexible working as part of their company’s policies. This showed an increase from last year where a third of UK employees were not offered flexible working.

The state of work today

Due to Coronavirus we’ve seen flexible working transform from something offered as a perk to a necessity. Workers have dispelled the myth that flexible working results in lower productivity, in fact we’ve seen the opposite. We found that 62 per cent of decision makers said productivity has increased at their company since lockdown. As well as this, investments in tech means that 72 per cent now believe they can adequately support their remote working staff. And, last but certainly not least, 70 per cent said they would increase the amount of flexibility their workforce has when they return to the office.

This shows companies are starting to realise flexible working doesn’t mean people will just doss around and there’s hope that more companies will adopt this way of working and they’d be right to do so. We’ve harped on consistently about the many benefits of flexible working and how a better work-life balance does wonders for mental and physical wellbeing. Fingers crossed this is indicative of a more permanent change in attitudes towards flexible working and is reflected by businesses.

It’s time to embrace the new way of working

The shift in how we work will mean that more people will now demand flexible working. We’ve seen that by investing in remote working tech such as conference calls and video calls you don’t have to hold meetings in the office for them to be effective. The utilisation of online meeting tools shows productivity hasn’t been affected but rather bolstered. There’s no reason for a company to not embrace and encourage flexible working, companies that can offer it, can’t afford not to, as people have become adjusted to a more flexible way of working.

We’re determined to keep banging the drum and see this as an opportunity for businesses to revaluate their working practices and get more in line with how their employees think and would like to be treated. Flexible working means a chirpier workforce, which in turn creates a working environment that people are proud to be a part of.

The key word here is flexibility, we aren’t trying to say that being in an office environment doesn’t have its perks. It’s finding a balance that is crucial to sustain a healthy state of wellbeing. Giving your workers the choice is what matters and demonstrating a level of trust that they don’t have to be in the office to benefit your business.

Andrew Johnson, PowWowNow Managing Director: “It is evident that flexible working does not negatively impact the productivity of a workforce, and actually not having to spend time commuting can improve the productivity of a team. It will take time for offices to phase back to normality; the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic has had devastating consequences for lives and the economy, but it has also reminded us how important it is to take care of our mental and physical wellbeing.

Throughout the pandemic businesses have invested heavily in technology to enable employees to work flexibly, and now they must continue to offer their workforce the chance to choose how they work; whether that’s from the office, remotely or flexibly, in order to reflect the growing demand for flexibility and to reap the benefits of their workforce living a well-balanced home and work life.”

Survey information

In recent months we’ve seen our routines turned on their head, with many of us being forced to substitute the daily commute with the laborious saunter over to our home office. Does this drastic shift indicate a longer lasting trend in how we work, and will flexible working be welcomed across the board? We very much hope so and according to our 2020 flexible working survey nearly three quarters (73%) of UK employees feel that they would be more productive if they could spend time working flexibly.

Chaos in the commute

So why do people feel they would be more productive working flexibly? A reason many of us will be familiar with, the darned daily commute. Jam packed trains, crowds of people, awkward eye contact, the stress of running late, missing a train or factors out of your control can hinder your mood when you step into the office. Prior to lockdown 59 per cent of workers admitted they arrived at work stressed due to their commute at least once a week, with more than 6 in 10 (63%) having a commute of over 30 minutes. On top of this 40 per cent of decision-makers said the biggest benefit experienced during lockdown was being more productive due to the absence of their commutes.

The freedom to get ready and start work at your own pace is a contributing factor to employee wellbeing and productivity and one of the upsides of working from home.

A different landscape

One of our greatest strengths is the willingness and ability to adapt. Many workers are now accustomed to working flexibly and enjoy the many perks that come with it.

When lockdown began, it left many businesses scrambling to accommodate remote working, but now 72 per cent of decision makers now believe their business can adequately support their staff when working remotely. Lockdown has been an opportunity for business leaders to implement new processes, communication tools and software to future proof their business. Popular remote working tools available today such as screen share and video calls has the benefit of not always being in the same room as one another in order to see results. Even large-scale business events can be held virtually with the use of webinars.

What does this all mean in a post lockdown world? It means it’s going to be tougher to get employees to commit to the traditional 9-5 work schedule, commutes, and all when they’ve had a taste of flexible working. Initial concerns around flexible working had lack of productivity at the forefront. Now that it’s become a reality, that concern has in large part been proven wrong. Workers are now aware that they can still be productive, if not more so when they’re allowed to work flexibly.

The future is flexible (we warned you)

So now we know that flexible working increases productivity, it’s a given that it will be embraced with open arms, right? We wish it were that simple. Prior to lockdown only 4 in 10 UK businesses offered flexible working, so it would be optimistic to expect this to completely change.

What we do expect to see in an increased pressure from employees requesting flexible working. Many people have experienced the benefits personally and seen their work-life balance and productivity improve, so why go back to your old way of working? This is a great opportunity for businesses to re-evaluate their flexible working culture and how you manage your employee wellbeing, priming them and your business for success. Part of growing as a business is adapting to changing attitudes and if this means an increase in productivity then why on earth not?

Andrew Johnson, PowWowNow Managing Director: “The ongoing Coronavirus pandemic has had devastating consequences for lives and for businesses. However, as we rebuild our country, the resultant shift to remote working can be used for good- businesses must embrace changing attitudes around flexible working and ensure employees have more options when it comes to when they work, and where they work from.

“PowWowNow encourages employers to listen to the ever-increasing number of workers who believe flexible working would not only improve their productivity, but also increase their wellbeing. If people can better balance work and life commitments, we will all reap the benefits from creating a happier and more fulfilled society. The 9-5 office-focused workday is gone, and it’s time to usher in a new, and better, future.”

Survey information

Out of all the meeting solutions, webinars are often the most misunderstood (poor sods). The main differentiation, is that with this platform, you can interact with much larger audiences. It’s the solution you choose when you want to make a big company announcement or gain new audiences, amongst other things. Nevertheless, being misunderstood means there are some common misconceptions that we’d like to address and dispel.

  1. Attendees can interrupt

Simple answer, no they cannot. We’ll expand a little. One of the main reasons to pick a webinar over a video call is you have more control. Sure, with a video meeting you can control who you invite but it can be difficult and restrictive to try and control the conversation. Whereas, with an online event the conversation is one way. You present to your audience exactly what you want to convey, without worrying about interruptions. Your attendees can still interact with your event, e.g. through polls, Q&As and surveys but they’ll never people to hop on the line with you and proceed to talk over you.

  1. They’re expensive

They can be, but not always. It’s all relative. If you need to present to a massive amount of people, then you’re going to end up paying more. The potential results you can see from using webinars, however, make them an inexpensive option. Think how much dosh you can spend setting up a real-life expo. You’ve got to think about venue hire, catering costs, travel and a whole heap of other costs that we don’t need to bore you with.

With an online event, like ours, you have an option to choose a one-off event with a one-off cost or a monthly recurring charge to run however many events you want. We can promise that most of the time both options will work out cheaper than hiring out a venue. Plus, with everything happening now, organising a mass gathering of international individuals will be tricky to say the least.

  1. They’re Boring

We’ve touched on this before but it’s all too common not to include on this list. That’s right, people have a pre-conceived notion that webinars are boring and in some cases this is justified. What’s important to remember is that this isn’t down to the platform being used, but rather the way it’s being used.

They’ve become synonymous with boring presentations (speaking plainly). This doesn’t have to be the case and if you approach your online event as a way of providing value for your users with the content you showcase, it will no longer be a snooze fest. Allow and encourage your audience to interact with your event, present on topics they want to hear about, use a mixture of content, there are plenty of ways to liven up your event and keep them coming back for more.

  1. Complicated to get going

Like using any piece of tech for the first time, there’s a learning curve, some curves steeper than others. Luckily for you ours is simple to use. You’re thinking of course we’d say that, but it really is true. When setting up an event we have useful guides to help you every step of the way, so you feel like you can get an event going in minutes. We’d recommend spending a bit more time than that but the point stands. After a short amount of investigation and practice they are no more complicated than any other piece of software.

  1. They’re Unreliable

We understand that the idea of your event bombing in front of hundreds of people due to technical difficulties can send shivers up your spine. There are ways to lessen these fears by simply choosing a high-quality and reliable webinar product. Yep, you guessed it, like ours. Another way to make sure the product you’re using is reliable is to test it out before the main event. By testing it out you’ll not only feel more confident when it comes to presenting but you’ll put your mind at ease by seeing that the tech is working fine.

Voila, 5 of the most common misconceptions dispelled. You can always book a demo to see what all the fuss is about!

Webinars are the epitome of you get out what you put in. If you’re willing to put in the time to learn about the platform then chances are, you’ll be just fine. If you go in thinking this will be a doddle, I’ll just get cracking the night before, then don’t be surprised when your event is a bit of a flop. Even if you have dedicated time and effort to understanding the tool, there are still some common mistakes you may make, after all we’re only human. That’s why we’ll be covering our top 4 mistakes and how you can avoid them.

  1. Poor planning

This is probably the most common reason for a webinar not performing well and arguably the most avoidable. We get it, we all have busy lives and it can be hard dedicating hours to something that you’re not 100% sure will pay off. You need to give yourself enough time to properly promote your event, create the content and have an understanding around the product features and how to use them.

With our webinar tool, you can set up and schedule events in minutes, that’s the easy part. We also offer a demo to help you if you need extra guidance. The other cogs for a successful online event require you to put your strategy hat on and prepare with a clear objective in mind. Whether it be growing your customer base, educating your audience or training and development, having an objective will shape how you plan your event. Once you’ve set out clear goals for you event, you can better understand why and how you can improve your next event.

  1. Lacking confidence in how the tool works

This echoes the first mistake, but it’s crucial that before you hold any online events you have a clear understanding of the tool you’re using. Our product offers numerous resources to help you along the way. If you don’t understand the tool or why you’d even use it, you can’t expect to hold an awesome virtual event. There’s no harm in going into the product and having a nosey around, set up a dry run and ask your colleagues to tune in.

You’re infinitely more likely to succeed with your event if you’ve got a strong grasp on the features and why you’d use them. Our product encourages you to create engaging events with surveys, polls, Q&As and more, so prioritise understanding how these can be incorporated into your event. We’ll always be here to offer a helping hand and by no means is running a webinar rocket science but at the sake of repeating ourselves, you get out what you put in!

  1. Lacklustre content

Right, we’ve ticked off the necessity to plan and understand the tool, now the juicy stuff. A big reason behind the conceived notion that online events lack relevancy is the type of content used. A common mistake made by content creators when they hold online events is to upload an hour-long PowerPoint and expect people to be thrilled and stick around for the full hour. That simply isn’t using the products full potential, you’ve got a host of features built into the tool for the sole purpose of engagement.

Use features such as polls, Q&As and surveys to interact with your audience and create an event that asks for their input. This is a win, win and will benefit both you and your audience. You’ll gain valuable insights and your audience will associate you with top notch webinars, potentially sharing the news with colleagues etc (you get the drift).

  1. Failing to follow up

Right, picture the scenario. You’ve just held a brilliant online event, lots of people attended and there was loads of engagement. Job done, right? Wrong. Another common mistake is holding the event and failing to do anything afterwards. By creating a custom registration page, you’ve got all this useful data about the people who attended your event. This is why one of the main benefits of using the product is generating high quality leads. To turn these leads into customers you’re going to want to reach out after your event. It doesn’t even have to be super sophisticated; it could just be an email asking them how they found the event and what they’d like from the next one.

This acts as a two in one, you get great feedback for your next event and you’ve potentially landed some new customers.

To summarise, plan, practice, make the most of the features and follow up. Abide by this process and you’ll be holding showstopping online events in no time, book a demo if you’re just raring to go!