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When A Toll Free Conference Call Might Cost You More

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A toll free conference call means free, right? Well not exactly. For someone dialing a toll free number, yes it’s free. For the conference call administrator though, there are user charges. This is the same for every conference call service. So what are the best ways to reduce costs? We’re glad you asked.

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Toll Free Still Has A Cost

When a person dials into a conference call they can do it one of two ways: through a local number or toll free. In both cases, the meeting administrator gets charged, but the administrative charge for toll free conference call services is higher.

Clients & Partners First – But Be Smart

Of course, you want to treat your clients and partners with kid gloves. If you organize a conference call, you’re not going to stick them with a big phone bill. So you give them a toll free number, right? Not so fast! If you also give them the option of a local call number, you could save money in conference call costs. Being generous doesn’t have to mean being wasteful.

Consider Your Options Carefully

In some cases, you might want to go with only local call in numbers. Most clients won’t be upset about this as local phone charges might be minimal or even zero. However, if your operation is global, you should consider giving participants a choice between local and toll free. In some countries, local calls might not be that cheap. When in doubt, it’s probably best to give clients a choice. Sending chocolates never hurts either.

Free – Free Option

In some cases, you can even get free dial-in without administrative charges. This can happen when people are calling in using a VoIP connection. Skype, GTalk or WebRTC are examples of this type of internet call in. For some international users, these platforms are the method of choice since it keeps their costs low.

Some providers allow you to have a limited number of users that can dial-in for free over VoIP without any administrative charge. After you exceed this limit, a charge kicks in, but it’s still usually much lower than the local or toll free administrative costs.

Toll Free Is Still The Standard

In nearly every business situation, if you are hosting a conference call, the toll free option is the standard. If you go with a provider that can’t offer this service, then you probably should look elsewhere.

Business partners and clients expect this type of courtesy, so give them what they want. That said, you still might be able to save some money by offering simultaneous local and VoIP connection options.

Want a conference call service that gives you local, toll free and VoIP options? MyGlobalConference gives you more choices. Get connected with us today.

V.H.C for myGC

conference call jargon

Conference Call Terminology – Making Sense of The Jargon

By | Conference call, Conferencing App, my Global Conference, Tips | No Comments

So your company needs conference call services, right? But what’s with all the strange terminology like “admin” and “dial-out”? Why can’t they just speak plain English? Well don’t worry. We’re here to demystify the jargon for you.

Sometimes conference calls are identified by other names. So if you hear confcall, teleconference or audioconference, they’re all talking about the same thing. Basically it’s more than two people on a phone call at once.

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Now let’s take a look at the conference call terminology.

Admin

The Admin is the administrator, or organizer, of the conference call. This is also the one that receives the conference call billing. The Admin typically has more control over the call, such as inviting participants or muting users. Some systems refer to the Admin as the conference moderator or manager.

Conference Recording

A feature that allows you to record a conference call for playback later. Some systems also allow you to download and share the recording.

Dial-In, Dialing-In

Every conference call has a dial-in number. This is a phone number that connects you to the conference call. Conference call providers have sets of phone numbers that can be used for dial in. In many cases, dial-in numbers can be set up to be local numbers or toll free.

Dial-Out

No this isn’t calling out for pizza or sushi. When an Admin dials-out, this means they call someone outside of the conference to ask them to join the call. This is typically an Admin only capability.

Email Notification

This means that participants get invited to a conference call by email. The email usually has all the details about the call, such as subject, date, time, dial-in and PIN code.

Local Access Number

These are the dial-in numbers to access a conference call. Most providers have access numbers in many countries to avoid international phone call charges.

PIN Code

After a participant dials into the conference call system, it asks for a PIN code/number (also known as the Access Code, Conference Code, Conference ID, Participant Code, etc.). This may be requested for by a message that says, “Enter in Conference.” Every conference call has a unique PIN number that lets you access the call. The PIN number should not be confused with the dial-in number.

Reservationless or Permanent Conference

This is like having your own conference call ready to use at any time, over and over again. The Admin has their own PIN code and another one is available for participants to use at any time. Too bad you can’t have this at your favorite restaurant!

Scheduled Conference

This type of meeting has a set start time for invited participants. The PIN code is unique to this conference only and expires when the meeting ends.

VoIP Conference Access

Instead of calling from a telephone line, some participants might choose to access the call through an Internet based connection (Skype, Google GTalk, Web RTC Dialer, etc.)

Conclusion

So there you have it! All the confusing terms explained. Now you can sound like a pro when it comes to conference calls.

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V.H.C for myGC

confcall

How to Improve Your Conference Calls

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Conference calls seem all so amazing when you think about the benefits they bring to your business or meetings. However, when you think of the issues that could well come along with setting up or running one, you will soon realize that participating or organizing a call can be quite challenging.

There are a number of things that you will have to include in your plan to avoid making your call a complete flop. Here are five things you should be absolutely prepared for.

  1. Audience Management

Conference calls only make use of one of your senses – Hearing. You aren’t able to see the people you’re talking or listening to. Unless you keep track of each new caller or leaver, you will definitely be unaware of who your audience are.

  1. Noise

We term noise as anything else that comes from a caller apart from their voice such as typing, machine, road and even paper crushing noises. You get these noises mostly with callers who use a microphone in a device during the call that is multi-directional and very sensitive, such as one you will find in a laptop. The only way you can stop this problem from occurring is to let callers know the etiquettes of a conference call such as muting when it’s not time to speak, prior to joining.

  1. Playing Music on Hold

This is definitely a no-no. People love tuning their phones to suit individual needs. Although it would be nice to let callers that are placed on hold to listen to some Beethoven, this should be made criminal if done during a conference call. Some call participants may decide to put the conference call on hold while attending to something else. However by doing so with music, they would only be adding unwanted ambience to everyone in the conference call. 

  1. Call Leadership

Things can go array quickly if the call does not have a leader. Call leaders are important especially during calls that involve sensible matters where there might be more than one holding the reins. The call leader should ensure that everyone is given ample time to speak and given necessary attention when it calls for it. They should also be able to smooth out any conflicts or topic straying that may arise during the call.

  1. Call Materials

References to documents are often made during conference calls. Sending out erroneous documents or information to participants, can lead to callers being left in the dark on certain points and therefore causing them to lose interest in the call. Such documents and information should be checked and sent to all invited parties way before the call starts.

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We hope our simple tips above to improve your call, will help you along and we wish you all the best of luck!

Nigel Sim for myGC

dial in a conference call

Conference call – Skype, GTalk & Other Access Methods

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When you set up a conference call, people might want to dial-in using a landline, cell phone or an Internet connection. The best platforms allow participants to use a variety of methods to access a conference call. Skype, GTalk and WebRTC Dialer are some useful options. Since it all looks and sounds like alphabet soup, let’s find out what each one means.

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Two Main Types of Access

There are generally two types of conference call access – by phone or by VoIP. Phone access is via a regular phone or smartphone. VoIP uses Internet technology to get you connected. The third type of connection – two cans connected by a string – is no longer used by modern companies.

Conference Call – Phone Access

Phone access can use a local dial-in number which means phone call charges apply. You might want to set up toll free access to make things easier for participants. Most businesses offer this option to maintain good client and partner relations. Sending flowers might be overdoing it though.

Conference Call – Skype Access

To use this type of access, you’ll need a Skype account. Users simply add the conference provider’s Skype ID (e.g. myglobalconference) to their list of contacts. When it’s time to join the conference, you just dial the contact. When prompted, you enter the PIN code and you’re in the conference.

Conference Call – Google GTalk Access

This is very similar to conference call Skype access. You just add the provider’s Gmail (e.g. myglobalconference@gmail.com) to your Gmail contacts. When you want to access a conference call, you just click on the ID in your GTalk menu which opens up a chat box.

Next, click the list phone call icon to “call computer” and audio instructions will play. When the voice tells you, type the conference code in the chat box and you’re in. If the voice tells you that you should run naked in the street, ignore it.

Conference Call – WebRTC Dialer

This free connection lets you access conference calls from your web browser. Audio in these cases might even be better than regular land lines. You’ll need a WebRTC compatible browser, like Chrome, Firefox or Opera.

With one click you access the free web dialer (mygc.co/dial). Then enter your conference access code, click “Dial your Conference” and a dialog box will open on top of your browser. Make sure you allow your browser to access to your microphone.

Conclusion

As you can see, there are many ways to access conference calls. This allows you to offer participants a choice. During any call, you could have people participating using several different access methods. Everyone’s happy since they get to choose!

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V.H.C. for myGC

The 5 Things People Have Admitted To Doing While On a Conference Call

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 If you’re currently on a conference call and you’re reading this, trust me, you’re not alone. It turns out that many have admitted to doing just about anything other than listening closely to what’s said during the call. Let’s be straightforward here, it takes a very talented person to keep everyone engaged in a conference call when only voices are heard, with no visuals. In fact, more than a quarter of those surveyed admitted to falling asleep during a call.

Now this might not sound surprising to you but in case it does, most of us now own at least one mobile device that is capable of participating in conference calls. Since almost everyone is mobile and not confined to a table to take the call, this then backs the question: What exactly are people doing while on conference calls?

Here are some responses worthy of mentioning:

“I was hiking”

“Having a BBQ at my backyard”

“Trying on clothes in a fitting room”

“At the beach working on my tan”

We ventured on a journey to research and find out what people are actually doing. So now we proudly present to you: The 5 things people have admitted to doing while on a conference call. Thanks to the magical mute function on our phones, we can now conveniently carry on with what we’re doing while still being “present” in the call. Yes we’re referring to you guilty people reading this and pretending to be surprised.

  1. Working on something else

Well not surprising, everyone can multitask right? Two-thirds of those surveyed have admitted that one of the biggest opportunity to get two things done at a time is during a conference call. While overachieving is a good thing, we don’t encourage it as you might unknowingly become too distracted and whatever you are doing plus the call, becomes ineffective.

  1. Emailing

Surprisingly, more than three out of five people have admitted to emailing while on a call. Although it might sometimes be necessary, you shouldn’t do so unless you can type, read and pay attention to the call at the same time. Otherwise, you will soon find out in your sent items that your email wasn’t as well drafted as you thought it was.

  1. Eating

If your mouth is filled with peanuts, you aren’t contributing that much are you? However this is one of the riskiest things to be doing while on a call especially if you’re active and worse still, forgot to put the mute on. Imagine a scenario where you are munching away on your tuna sandwich and suddenly your boss asks for your opinion. Swallow, spit, or chew?

  1. Exercising

No we’re not talking about squeezing stress balls or hand springs, we’re talking about treadmill stuff. Yup that’s right, exercising while on a conference call. I don’t know about you, but when I’m on a treadmill I can hardly breathe! Much to our surprise, some people have reportedly gone for a jog on a treadmill, workout on a bike or even lifting weights while on a call!

  1. Taking another call

By far the best that we’ve heard, this brings multitasking to a whole new level. People have admitted to taking another call while staying on the conference and we don’t mean short calls, we mean really long calls and holding both handsets to each ear, that kind of stuff.

Here’s a pro tip for you from experience: Let participants in the conference call know that you are expecting a very important call soon. So when they ask for your opinion and you don’t respond, they won’t think that you have already fallen asleep on them.

How to keep your participants engaged

As the moderator of the call, always try to engage users by asking questions to prevent participants from wandering off. This will also make callers feel that their presence matters and are not just listeners. Get emotions into your speech to make things sound a little more exciting, always try to put back what the phone lines have removed even if you’re at the beach.

Nigel Sim for myGC

New China dial-in number

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Dear my Global Conference users,

after a few issues with our China dial-in number, we have changed it to a new one. Please now use this number for China local dial-in:
+86 4006306783
Have great conference !
conference call meeting

Why Conference Call Etiquette Is Important

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Have you ever been on a conference call and felt like a spectator? Or have you ever been distracted during a call and caught by surprise? These kinds of gaffes are a no-no when it comes to conference call etiquette. Find out how to play nice with all your partners and clients during your next conference call.

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It Starts Early

When your call is scheduled, try to inform people well in advance. Sometimes an urgent issue comes up, but the best meetings happen when people come prepared. You should arrive and be ready early, especially if you’re moderating the call. If possible, make sure all participants have confirmed their attendance ahead of time as well.

Wait For It Then State Your Name

When you arrive to the call, you should identify yourself. But wait! There might already be people in the call talking, so don’t interrupt. Wait until they finish, then politely say hi and give them your name. In many cases, someone will already be there that knows you, and they’ll introduce you. Then all you have to do is say hi.

Take Turns

We really shouldn’t have to say this, but please, wait your turn. Interrupting is extremely impolite. Interrupt a client too many times, and they might start looking for products and services elsewhere. Plus, you might miss out on some really juicy info – like where to get great take-out.

For conference calls, some might be accessing the call using VoIP, so taking turns is even more important. If not, other people won’t even hear what you’re saying since some communication lines can’t process more than one voice at a time.

Share the Mike

Maybe the only thing as bad as interrupting is monopolizing the conversation. Remember, it’s a conference call. That means everybody should participate. Yes, one person should guide the flow of conversation, but be sure to ask, “What do you think?” every so often.

Believe us, if you talk too long, people will tune out and start browsing the web or picking their nose. Really, it happens all the time.

Stay Awake and Pay Attention

These days, many conference calls are done online – or you might be at your computer while using an iPhone. This makes it tempting to do other things during the call, like check emails, read the news or Facebook with your Aunt Myrtle. But don’t.

Pay attention to the call 100%. Nothing is more embarrassing than having to say, “What’d you say? Sorry my Aunt Myrtle just posted a cute pic of her poodle.” Seriously, multitasking during a conference call is just plain rude.

Conclusion

Good conference call etiquette is important just like in any other type of conversation. Be on time, wait your turn, share space and pay attention. They’ll love you for it.

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V.H.C. for myGC

 

conference call costs

Understanding Conference Call Costs

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Conference calls these days can involve participants from Prague to Houston to Bangalore. This can make cost structuring complex. Some carriers don’t give you all the details about conference call costs which can be very uncomfortable. Why? Because when your client or partner gets a huge, unexpected phone bill, they don’t like it. Would you? Let’s find out how to avoid this.

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Dial-In Charges Can Be Deceiving

A conference call requires participants to dial-in, right? Unfortunately some conference call providers might make it look like people are calling into local numbers, but then they do the bait-and-switch. What does this mean? It means that instead of a local phone rate, they charge a higher rate. It may even look like it’s free, but it isn’t. Try explaining that to a client that gets a big phone bill.

Toll Free Option

A great option is to have a toll free number available for meeting participants to use. This way you can be sure that they won’t get overcharged. The toll free method helps you control your costs as well. Your conference call provider can tell you exactly how much a toll free service costs. If they don’t tell you, you should find another provider. Don’t be mean about it, just say no thanks.

Don’t forget that VoIP connections are usually free of charge for users to call in from. Some providers also provide this type of connection for free up to a limited amount of users.

Simple Is Better

Don’t you hate when you go to choose cable or cell phone service, and it’s all so complicated? You feel like they’re taking advantage of you. The best things are simple. The same goes for conference call costs. For example, you can have a clear picture of costs when the provider charges on a “participant per minute” usage basis.

This means only you – the administrator – gets billed, so no funny business with your clients. You only pay for what you use. If someone doesn’t call in, you don’t get charged. The most transparent conference call services will even have their charges fully outlined on their website.

Account Set Up & Monthly Fees

Some conference call providers will try to charge you a bunch of extra fees like membership, account activation or monthly charges. These are just ways to drain money out of your wallet. Don’t fall for it. Again, don’t get mad. Just walk away.

Don’t worry though. You can get a conference call service that doesn’t overcharge you or try to add on pointless extra charges.

Conclusion

Conference call costs don’t have to be confusing or deceptive. The best providers will outline everything for you up front. This avoids confusion and participant inconvenience. Take control of your conference call costs by hooking up with a provider that makes things simple for you.

Know how much you are going to spend up front on conference call services. Sign up for free today.

V.H.C. for myGC

onavo

How to enable Onavo protect on china mobile phones

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I have struggled to get Onavo protect VPN to work on my China Mobile phone and have finally resolved the issue and felt that it could be worth sharing with the community.

It turns out the solution is quite easy: uninstall Onavo, take out the SIM card, connect to a WiFi network, re-download and install Onavo again and it should work! (then you can re-insert the SIM card of course)

I am currently running Onavo Protect version 1.11

Hope it helps!

Have great conferences!

E.B. for myGC