Web conferencing software is a powerful solution that allows events that are traditionally held in person – such as sales calls, marketing seminars, training sessions, and company meetings – to be conducted via the Web. With the robust features and functionality listed below, Web conferencing software can increase convenience and reduce costs, while facilitating the same kind of open communication and collaboration that takes place during face-to-face interactions.
With Web conferencing software, session leaders can give lecture-style presentations, complete with slides created in PowerPoint, Mac Keynote, or other presentation software packages. Slides can even be marked up and annotated during the course of the presentation, to draw attention to certain points on the slide as the speaker is presenting.
Presenters can enhance their session content, and give it a more personal touch, with live video. The Web conferencing software will display the active pictures, in real-time, as they are taken with any Web cam or digital camera.
Many Web conferencing software providers also offer teleconferencing services, so participants can converse directly. Some of the more advanced Web conferencing software packages also provide VoIP capabilities, so attendees can conveniently speak to peers and presenters through a headphone, or a microphone with speakers.
Traditional lecture-style presentations can be stale and boring. With Web conferencing software, session leaders can make their events more exciting and interactive, empowering audience members to participate directly in demonstrations and other key activities by pushing URLs, forms, cookies, scripts, and other data right to them.
Recording and Playback
There may be times when participants are unable to attend a scheduled Webcast, but rescheduling the event is not an option. Web conferencing software helps companies overcome this challenge by allowing sessions to be recorded for playback at a later date. Recordings are made available via the Web and can be conveniently accessed any time, anywhere by authorized viewers.
With Web conferencing software, presenters can use diagrams to make notes, create diagrams and charts, or draw pictures to more clearly convey important or complex concepts. Some Web conferencing software solutions even allow whiteboard control to be passed over to an attendee or a co-presenter for enhanced collaboration.
Almost all Web conferencing software vendors offer chat facilities. Audience members can ask questions, and designated presenters or administrators can respond. These discussions can be kept private or made public for all attendees to view.
Surveys and Feedback
Surveying and polling features are available in most Web conferencing software packages, so presenters can gather information and feedback from audience members. This data can be used not only to make the session more dynamic and interactive, but to obtain insight into how future Webcasts can be improved, or to collect data for the purposes of market research and analysis.
Perhaps the most advanced feature of today’s Web conferencing software packages is the ability for the presenter to share his or her desktop. Audience members are provided with a complete view of the shared screen, so they can see all actions taken (i.e. opening and using the features of an application, navigating through a Web site, etc.). Additionally, some Web conferencing software systems allow presenters to give control of their desktop to an attendee or co-presenter.