Audio Conference Engagement – you probably hear a lot about it. Whether you’re designing a website or sharing information on social media, you want your message to resonate with your audience. The same is true of holding conference calls. Whether your attendees are customers, colleagues, prospects, or vendors, the more engaged they are, the better the potential outcome. With that in mind, use the tips below to improve engagement during your next audio conference call.
Set Time Limits
Audio conference calls have a reputation for being long and boring, and no one wants to waste their time or be bored. Improving audio conference engagement with each conference call you hold can help overcome this perception. Setting time limits won’t necessarily increase user engagement on its own, but it will help establish a record of shorter, more productive conference calls.
Plan Your Call as If It Were a Presentation
What information do you need to communicate to your audience? Takeaways should be clear and obvious. Any action that you want your attendees to take at the end of the call?
Your conference call should have a beginning, middle, and end. Think of it as a story with an arc that moves from the status quo to an inciting incident with trials, obstacles, and perhaps an element of surprise to a resolution.
• Beginning — Briefly describe the current status of the product. Increase buy-in by sharing what’s at stake.
• Middle — During the main portion of your call, you could create a narrative of where you want to be and the obstacles that stand in your way. Start with the easy-to-solve obstacles and add tension by increasing their complexity. Encourage your attendees to share ideas on how to overcome those obstacles and reiterate the takeaways.
• End — At the end of the conference call, describe the action plan you’ve come up with together.
Make it Interactive to Enhance Audio Conference Engagement
Many audio conference calls are passive with just one or two main speakers. Refer to your attendees’ list and make a point to call on each person, specifically asking for their input or tasking them with something. “Mary, would it be better to advertise on Facebook, Instagram, or Pinterest?” “Stephan, can you create an infographic?”
Add Break-out Sessions
Audio conference calls can become boring when the subject matter is no longer relevant. Spending time discussing graphic design will bore your data scientists to death. Meanwhile, a lengthy discussion on analytics and computer coding will have your marketing team tuning out. Schedule a short break-out session, again with a specific time limit, where smaller teams can discuss their unique concerns amongst themselves before returning to the main call. Your conference call will be more productive, relevant, and engaging as a result.
Setting time limits, planning your message and arc, calling on individuals directly, and using break-out sessions are a few ideas to help improve attendee engagement during conference calls.