By Victor Burgess, Senior Director of Global Service Delivery, ACT Conferencing

From web meetings to webinars and webcasting, it is often difficult for businesses to determine the appropriate conferencing format based on the type of activity in order to achieve desired results.

Through our 24x7, 365-day support network, at ACT we’re finding an increasing number of calls are inquiries about how to know what type of conferencing service to use for different types of meetings. With all the options now available, it can be tough to know what services to use and when.

When trying to determine which online service to use, we suggest considering four primary questions:

1.)How many people will be involved?

2.)What type of communication is needed during the meeting? (e.g. audio, video, pre-recorded material)

3.)What information will be shared in real-time? (e.g. presentation, videos)

4.)What level of interaction is needed for participants? (e.g. open dialogue, live surveys, submit questions via instant message)

By answering these questions, organisations can determine which conferencing service to employ. For instance, a web conference is appropriate for a highly interactive meeting involving a small number of participants and visual components. Web conferences rarely involve the use of video and focus mainly on PC content, such as PowerPoint presentations. Easy to use, ACT’s ReadyConnect Web Meeting can be set up on demand, and by sharing documents in real-time, participants can save time later.

For a presentation-focused meeting involving primarily one-way communication, branding, and detailed reporting requirements, a webinar is more suitable. ACT’s ConferenceCast Webinars, with Elite Audio Conferencing Services enable the speaker to use slides, with the visual components shown via the Internet and the audio element over the phone.

If the presentation is more formal and involves a speaker and a large audience, then a webcast will be most effective. Frequently used for training, ACT’s ConferenceCastTM Webcasts use streaming media technology to distribute both the static and interactive content from the speaker to the audience.

We help our customers determine which web conferencing tool to use by posing the four basic questions outlined above. By using the right tool, customers will achieve the best results.

About ACT Conferencing

Established in 1989, ACT Conferencing is a global provider of corporate audio, web and video collaboration services. ACT’s integrated platforms provide managed, international and local-language services. The company is headquartered in Lakewood, Colorado, with operations in Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Netherlands, Singapore and the UK. For more information, visit www.actconferencing.com.