Small Business Saturday and #ShopSmall Drives SMB Growth

Small Bus Sat 1Last Fall American Express launched the Small Business Saturday campaign to drive awareness and traffic to small businesses and locally owned and operated businesses. AnyMeeting joined the program as a proud supporter, offering discounts to members for #shoppingsmall during the 2nd to last weekend in November.

According to the Small Business Saturday Consumer Insights Survey, U.S. consumers who were aware of Small Business Saturday reported spending a total of $5.5 billion with independent merchants on the day of the promotion.

Learn more about the program here. If you’d like to be notified the next time, AnyMeeting offers a Small Biz promotional discount, tell us in the comments below, or sign-up for a Free Account and stay tuned to announcements in our monthly newsletter.

 

Creating Killer Presentations: 5 Shocking Mistakes to Avoid

AnyMeeting users share thousands of presentations every month (literally) with nearly 20% of all meetings including a shared presentation. That is a lot of PowerPoint! And if you’re like most people, you’ve sat through a lot of PowerPoint presentations yourself. How many of them really rocked? And how many of them were just plain bad?

To help you rock your next presentation, tune-up your current one and shine like a star, check out these terrific tips:

New Easy Reference Guide for Presenters

New to AnyMeeting web conferencing for small business and need to launch a meeting fast? Check out our new Easy Reference Guide for Presenters. Download it and keep it handy for when you need to launch a meeting fast.

Easy-Ref-Guide-Snap

Key steps include:

  • Choose the mode for attendees, either “Discussion Mode” (everyone can talk and be heard) or “Listen-Only Mode” (only presenters can be heard).
  • Allow your mic and cam to broadcast
  • Record your meeting by clicking the “Record” button.
  • Share your screen, a YouTube video, or a presentation by clicking on one of the share options.

Download the Easy Reference Guide for Presenters: Starting a Quick Meeting Now.

Happy Holidays from AnyMeeting

 

On behalf of everyone here at AnyMeeting, I would like to thank all of our avid AnyMeeting users for a great 2012!

If it wasn’t for all of you, we would not have been able to keep growing AnyMeeting, with exciting additions such as the Small Business Toolkit webinar series, the new YouTube feature, an updated user interface, integration with VMware’s Zimbra Collaboration, Single Sign-On from the Google Chrome Web Store, and so much more!

We hope that you’ve had a very prosperous and productive year, and we look forward to being your choice for web conferencing and webinars in 2013.  Happy Holidays and a very Happy New Year!

Costin Tuculescu, CEO & Founder

AnyMeeting Integrates With VMware Zimbra Collaboration Suite

HUNTINGTON BEACH, CA–(Marketwire – Oct 18, 2012) – AnyMeeting, the free web conference and online meeting solution for small business, today announced it has integrated with VMware Zimbra® Collaboration Server™ with the launch of the AnyMeeting Zimlet.

The new AnyMeeting Zimlet gives Zimbra users the ability to schedule, launch and manage AnyMeeting online meetings all from within Zimbra. Users can designate meetings as AnyMeetings with a single click, or simply drag-and-drop contacts and emails onto the AnyMeeting Zimlet icon.

AnyMeeting is a full-featured web conferencing platform for small business, featuring 6-way video conferencing, phone conferencing, screen sharing, application sharing, chat, polls, meeting recording and more, plus support for up to 200 participants.

“We are very excited to work with an industry leader like VMware,” said David Gerken, Vice President of Business Development at AnyMeeting. “It’s an important step in our mission to bring the power of online meetings to everyone.”

VMware Zimbra is the email and collaboration suite built for the Post-PC era. More than 200,000 service providers, businesses, universities and government organizations rely on Zimbra to power more than 85 million paid mailboxes.

“Online meetings are a vital part of doing business today,” said Andy Pflaum, senior director, VMware Zimbra strategic alliances. “The AnyMeeting Zimlet takes advantage of Zimbra’s extensibility to provide users with an easy-to-use web conferencing solution that can make managing meetings from within the Zimbra platform even more convenient.”  See the complete press release on MarketWire.

AnyMeeting Teams up with Financial Planners in San Antonio

AnyMeeting has teamed up with the Financial Planning Association (FPA) to provide members with our solid, full-featured web conferencing solution.  As part of the new partnership, AnyMeeting traveled to San Antonio, Texas to exhibit and take part in the festivities at the 2012 FPA Experience Conference, including a keynote address from noted political couple James Carville and Mary Matalin.

The conference allowed AnyMeeting to demonstrate the service to members, which has been integrated with the association’s new FPA Practitioner Resource Guide as the FPA Virtual Meeting Tool.  This tool will allow FPA members to expand their reach, and showcase their business to potential and existing clients anywhere.

With over 23,000 financial planning professionals, the FPA is the largest membership organization for personal financial planning experts in the U.S., and includes professionals from all backgrounds and business models.

How Web Conferencing is Empowering Student Success

By Simon Breedon, Examiner.com, Degree Jungle,

Web conferencing has enhanced the effectiveness of online education, as well as brick and mortar education tenfold. Students are utilizing web conferencing tools more frequently and on a more goal-driven basis. From sharing files and engaging in social debates, to holding live instructional events entirely online, web-conferencing as an educational tool is changing how schools and universities function. This trend can be seen taking place both inside the classroom and outside where students are not just socializing with fellow classmates, but engaging with mentors in the form of webinars and study groups. The following are some of the interesting ways in which students can use web conferencing both inside and outside of the classroom.

In the Classroom

Inside the classroom, in both college and on the high school level, the expectation for students to be technologically savvy is becoming more pressing. This requires students to show they can utilize tools that extend much further than Microsoft Excel, or the basic Power Point Presentation. Web conferencing is the perfect tool to satisfy this expectation. In addition to being a valuable resource for information by providing students with the ability to contact experts in a certain field, web conferencing can also be used as a digital presentation tool in the classroom for live interviews with experts. Before conferencing was applicable as an integral part of the classroom, the thought of having an author present a live reading of their critically acclaimed novel, or having an actual political leader speak at a small classroom event would have only been possible in the rarest of opportune occasions. Web conferencing makes this type of exchange more convenient and thus more possible.

Outside the Classroom

Outside the classroom, students have the power to engage their fellow classmates on a level that is unprecedented. They can interact with mentors and experts for coaching and counseling. In many cases, counseling or consultancy services that were available to students in the past were often overlooked or avoided due to their lack of privacy or convenience. Tutoring services, foreign language studies, and adolescent counseling are all services that were costly or time consuming, but video conferencing makes them cost effective and time efficient. The most important aspect of this innovative resource is that students now have the ability to reach out and get assistance they need from the best possible source. They are no longer limited to resources just within their immediate surroundings, or community. The possibilities for education are truly globalized through web conferencing.

Future trends

Now that web conferencing applications like Skype and Google Talk are extending their functionality to mobile devices, students will truly be able to conference on the go. The fact that numerous mobile devices are extending their use to faster 4G networks makes data streaming and sharing much more plausible as well. The best benefit of being able to engage a large group through a web conference by cell phone is the ability to share files conveniently and securely with an entire group within the span of few seconds while on a daily jog, or running other errands. The multi-functional nature of web conferencing on mobile devices allows for an entirely new realm of possibilities in education and business.

 

THIS IS A SPECIAL GUEST POST BY ONE OF OUR ANYMEETING USERS. WANT TO WRITE FOR THE ANYMEETING BLOG? GET THE DETAILS.

AnyMeeting Brings Free Web Conferencing to the 20th USANA International Convention

AnyMeeting recently traveled to Salt Lake City, UT where it was invited to exhibit at the USANA International Convention 2012. Celebrating USANA’s 20th year, over 8,000 excited USANA Associates attended the event, including celebrity guest speakers Dr. Oz and Larry King, and a keynote address from USANA founder Dr. Myron Wentz. Pictured above, Dr. Wentz was quite popular at the event, signing autographs and greeting Associates (you can see the AnyMeeting logo in the background).

An internationally recognized microbiologist, immunologist and pioneer in the development of human cell culture technology and infectious disease diagnosis, Dr. Wentz started USANA Health Sciences in 1992. Today USANA has over 222,000 associates, and AnyMeeting is helping to bring the power of web meetings to all of them.

USANA utilizes AnyMeeting’s “Quick Start” program for large network marketing firms. The program provides leading firms such as USANA, with a free, company-branded web conferencing tool, which is made available to all of their distributors at no cost.

With its full-function web conferencing product, AnyMeeting meets all of the online meeting needs of network marketing distributors. The service provides distributors with six-way video conferencing, conference calling, screen sharing, recorded meetings, integration with Facebook and Twitter, YouTube video integration, and much more. The Quick Start program can be rolled out in only a few days, and with no IT resources from the partner. AnyMeeting is also able to integrate with a company’s own back-office systems for distributors, supporting single sign-on, contact sharing, calendar synching and more.

Tap the power of online meetings, video conferencing and webinars to grow your business today.

Share Your Favorite YouTube Video in AnyMeeting

Screen capture of YouTube feature in AnyMeeting

Over 4 billion videos on YouTube are viewed every day, and the site gets over 800 million unique visitors per month. It’s one of the most popular ways for people and small businesses to upload and view video content. Most likely, you already have videos on YouTube that you have posted or find value in.

Now, you can share YouTube videos with your attendees in meetings and webinars by simply copying and pasting the URL of any YouTube video. The new feature offers synchronized controls, so that presenters can pause and skip ahead in a video, all while keeping their audience in perfect sync.

Start a meeting and share your favorite YouTube video today. For more information on how the new feature works, visit our support site.

5 Tips For a Gold Medal Online Meeting Performance

Gold Medal Performance

We all get inspired and motivated from watching the Olympics.  Watching athletes give their best to earn a gold medal inspires us to give our best performance as business professionals.  A large part of the business world involves meetings, and a growing number of those meetings are online and involve web conferencing.

With this in mind, here are five tips that will help you give a gold medal worthy performance at your next online meeting.

  1. Test your equipment – Make sure that the computer you will be using meets the requirements needed to properly host a meeting.  The AnyMeeting System Test is a great way to run a test on your computer and make sure you are good to go.
  2. Avoid distractions – It’s important to be mindful of your location before you enter an online meeting and what distractions in the room (or on your person) may draw attention away from your presentation.  Make sure any distracting elements are not able to be seen or heard before you begin.  “When preparing for a Web meeting, imagine that your office is on stage and that the “audience” is in the room,” Chris Christopher, Microsoft Business.
  3. Are you prepared? – Even if you are not the host of the meeting, you may still have to give a presentation.  Be sure to practice before the meeting to ensure a flawless performance.  You will also want to be mindful of your audience (the others in the meeting) and what questions or input they might have. “Make sure you have everything prepared before the meeting. Video conferencing will tend to magnify any lack of preparation on your part,” Mark Shead, Productivity 501.
  4. Who speaks when? – Most online meetings have more than one person presenting.  If you are the host, make sure everyone knows when it is their turn to speak and/or present.  This will help ensure the flow of the meeting, and that everyone is ready when it’s time for their presentation.  “At the beginning of the virtual meeting, set ground rules for passing control and speaking,” Patrick Moran, Mashable Business.
  5. Keep them engaged – Meetings, online or in person can be boring and tedious.  So, be sure to keep everyone engaged.  Have your audience answer questions, ask for input and/or questions from your audience, or even tell a joke or two (keep it clean though).  This will help keep your audience in the game and paying attention.  “Inject fun into the event. Need fun stuff sprinkled throughout,” Tony Karrer, eLearning Technology.

As business professionals, meetings have become a large part of our everyday lives at the office.  Be it with clients or colleagues, if your meeting is online, following these tips will help you give a gold medal presentation.