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May 2011

Cost of Conference Calls: How Rates and Plans Differ

Author: Lee Simonson

The cost of conference call services can vary dramatically depending on the kind of service you use.  There are a number of different services available ranging from the top-of-the-line operator managed calls to flat and fixed rate conferencing.  That's why it is important to determine what plan works best for you.  If you look at the top of this webpage, you'll see several different conference services and each of those pages will display the rates for that service.

However, the information just below can give you a starting point when it comes to choosing a phone conference call service:

IF you do a lot of conferencing and it is not important for you to have a toll-free dial in number then your best conferencing bet is to use Flat and Fixed Rate Conferencing.  This will give you unlimited conference calls for one low flat monthly rate -- as low as $15 a month.  You can talk as much as you want, anytime you want.

IF having a toll-free access number to your conference is important because you will be using it for prospects or customers or external associates, then you are best advised to use the Toll Free Pay As You Go Service.  The cost of this is 7.9 cents per min./per person and you are only billed for what you use, when you use it.  It provides the convenience of a toll free number 

IF you are an occasional user and a toll-free access number is not important to you, then you should get the Non-Toll Free Pay As You Go conference option.  Everyone on your call will dial a non-toll free number (just a regular long distance number) to get into the conference.  This is very popular since most everyone has free long distance on their cell phone, or residential phone.  (And most work places have free long distance bundled with their local service as well.)  So, there is no reason to pay more for a toll free numbers if a regular non-toll free number can work as well.

IF are in a large city and most of your conferencing is done with people in the same city, or another large city, you should consider a conference call plan that enables you to dial a local number.  For example, your people in New York City could dial a New York City conference number, and your people in Los Angeles could dial an LA number, and everyone would end up in the same conference.  This is a very convenient and cost effective way to connect with people -- much less expensive than using a toll free numbers. It's called Local Access Conference Calling.

IF you have a conference call coming up that is critically important and/or you are using it for a legal deposition or law firm, you may want to get an Operator Managed service that provides the highest of quality and convenience.  You and your colleagues don't have to call in -- in fact, we call you.  Our trained professionals will call each person on your list and place them into the conference call at the appointed time.  Our operators can also introduce each person as they are placed in the conference. Again, this is for high-level and high profile conference calls where you need the best service available in the conference world.

That is a quick review and summary of conference services and why the conference rates and prices may vary widely.  The key is to find the best service that meets your particular needs.  We are always available online or on the phone to help you with your options to insure that you are getting the right service at the right price.  Give us a call at 877-254-2424 and let's get you set up for your first conference call today.

Best Conference Call Service: Phone Conference Checklist

Author: Lee Simonson

If you are looking for the best conference call service, your best bet is to use a checklist of the requirements and criteria you want to use to narrow down your search.

 
Of course, we proudly think we're the best conference service out there, and if you are reading this, then Google, Bing and Yahoo might think we're worthy of your consideration as well, since that's probably how you found us.
 
Here is a quick checklist of the Top 9 questions you might want to ask when looking for a phone conference call service:
 
1)  Does a live person answer the phone when you call them?
2)  Does it offer live on-demand customer service?
3)  Does it offer customer testimonials on its website?
4)  Does the conference service provide for both toll free and non-toll free options?
5)  Does it provide for pay-as-you-go plans, as well as fixed and flat rate services?
6)  Does it provide for live operator managed conferences for important meetings?
7)  Does it offer free recording capabilities?
8)  Does it offer high security with 7-digit passcodes?
9)  Does it offer you a video conference service?
 
There are other questions you need ask, but those are the Top 9.  There are free conference services, and if the calls aren't important to you, that would be your best option since you can't beat the price.  However, if you are in business or a non-profit organization, you'll want a more reliable service that allows all the callers to get through without being blocked.  (Some of the carriers block calls into the free services.)
 
We answer YES to all of the above questions, and we're ready to serve you and set you up with the best and most affordable plan that meets your particular needs.  Give us a call today at 877-254-2424 or browse the website to see our offerings.  We think you'll be very pleased. 
 

How to Place a Conference Call: Best Service and Practices

Author: Lee Simonson

"How do I place a conference call?" is one of the most common questions we get.  When you look at the number of different options and services available, it can get to be quite daunting.  However, we strive to make things simple and easy for you.

 
Answer these quick questions and you should be able to find out quickly what is best for you:
 
1)  Do you want people to call a toll free number?  Or if it doesn't matter, would having folks dial into a regular long distance number work as well?  If you want a toll free number, then you can get yourself set up with a toll free conference service.  Toll free conferencing is a little more expensive than just have a regular number that people can call, because you are, in effect, paying for their long distance charges.
 
2)  Do you have conference calls all the time?  Or do you have them periodically?  If you have conference calls all the time, you definitely want a flat rate service that gives you unlimited usage for one low fixed rate per month.  On the other hand, if you have calls occasionally you are better off with the pay-as-you-go per minute plans where you are only charged for what you use, when you use it.  Pay as you go conferencing can be either toll free or non-toll free.
 
3)  Do you want to host a critically important, high-level conference call?  If so, your best bet is to have a professionally managed operator assisted call.  Operators will call out to each party and place, and introduce, each guest into the conference.  
 
4)  Do you want a local number to call into your conferences?  We have, for example, local access numbers in over 80 cities in the U.S. and Canada.  The service is very inexpensive and you are charged on a pay as you go basis.
 
Hopefully, we have what you are looking for.  If you're interested in discussing your particular needs, give us a call at 877-254-2424 and we can outline all your options and help you choose the best conferencing plan that fits your requirements and usage.  We can even give you a free trial week.
 

Conference Call Service Providers Reviews

Author: Lee Simonson

The best phone conferencing companies and services are easy to find, though there is no third-party or impartial judge who is going to give you a list of the best phone conferencing services.  And, if you allow us brag a little, we are proud to say that we stand with the best because of high quality technology, responsive customer service and very competitive rates.

 
The best conferencing services should all meet this criteria:
 
1)  They are established and have been in business many years.  (We've had the same phone number for 35 years.)
 
2)  They have a solid client base and their customers refer other customers.  (See our testimonials on our homepage.)
 
3)  They have live people who answer the phone and respond to you quickly.  (No automated phone trees here.  Live humans actually pick up the phone and say hello.  And we're Americans!)
 
4)  They have the latest technology and have the capacity to handle the traffic in a reliable and dependable way.  They also offer a number of different services to meet budgets and needs.   (Our technology is the best in the business and we offer everything from flat rate conferencing, pay as you go per minute conferencing, local access and operator assisted conferencing, and more.)
 
5)  They have competitive and fair rates.  (We have some of the best conferencing rates in the business.  In fact, we constantly hear from companies who tell us we've been able to cut their traditional conferencing expenses in half.)
 
Yes, choosing a "best conferencing company" may be totally subjective, and each conference service will tell you they're the best.  But if you hold your standards high, you'll be able to sort through the cloud of promotional noise and get hooked up with a conference company that can serve your particular needs very well.  Check out our conferencing services at the top of the page, or give us a call at 877-254-2424 and we'll be happy to prove ourselves.
 
We look forward to hearing from you!

How Do I Set Up and Organize a Conference Call?

Author: Lee Simonson

Setting up a conference call is easy.  If you are a business or non-profit, chances are you won't want to use your 3-way calling capabilities for important phone calls because there may be too many people "daisy-chaining" into the call which will degrade the quality of the conference.

 
To have a quality conference call, and to make it as easy as possible for all your participants, you'll want to access a professional conference call bridge.  Using a professional conference call bridge is fast and convenient, and don't worry, you won't have to buy any expensive equipment to do it.
 
We can set up a conference call account for you in minutes and get your own passcodes to enter.  So, everyone just dials the conference call-in number and enters their passcodes and that's it!  You are having a conference call.  You'll get two passcodes -- one for the leader or host and another for the guests or participants.
 
When you order your conference service, you'll have plenty to choose from.  For example:
 
1) You can choose a toll free service that enables everyone to dial a toll free number to access the conference bridge.
 
2) You can opt to have a non-toll free service, either on a pay-as-you-go basis or unlimited flat rate.
 
3) You can get a local access number conference service that provides you a local number (84 cities) to call into.
 
4) For your top level and important calls, you can have "operator managed conference call."  Our operators will call each of your participants and place them into the conference.  Your guests don't have to do anything, except answer the phone.
 
When using a conference call service like ours, your primary responsibility is to let each of your parties know when the conference call is scheduled.  Frankly, getting people to remember when to call in will be your greatest challenge since most people are forgetful.  It's best to send your participants a few email reminders so they can have their phone or computer alarm go off just prior to your conference call.  That way, you will increase your chances of having folks remember to dial in.

The Best Phone Conferencing Companies and Services

Author: Lee Simonson

The best phone conferencing companies and services are easy to find, though there is no third-party or impartial judge who is going to give you a list of the best phone conferencing services.  And, if you allow us brag a little, we are proud to say that we stand with the best because of high quality technology, responsive customer service and very competitive rates.

The best conferencing services should all meet this criteria:

1)  They are established and have been in business many years.  (We've had the same phone number for 35 years.)

2)  They have a solid client base and their customers refer other customers.  (See our testimonials on our homepage.)

3)  They have live people who answer the phone and response to you quickly.  (No automated phone trees here.  Live humans actually pick up the phone and say hello.  And we're Americans!)

4)  They have the latest technology and have the capacity to handle the traffic in a reliable and dependable way.  They also offer a number of different services to meet budgets and needs.   (Our technology is the best in the business and we offer everything from flat rate conferencing, pay as you go per minute conferencing, local access, toll free and operator assisted conferencing, and more.  See the links on the top of the page.)

5)  They have competitive and fair rates.  (We have some of the conferencing best rates in the business.  In fact, we constantly hear from companies who tell us we've been able to cut their traditional conferencing expenses in half.)

 

Yes, choosing a "best conferencing company" may be totally subjective, and each conference service will tell you they're the best.  But if you hold your standards high, you'll be able to sort through the cloud of promotional noise and get hooked up with a conference company that can serve your particular needs very well.

 

We look forward to hearing from you!