International Event Planning with Global Conference Calls and Virtual Phone Numbers

Let’s say that you will be planning upcoming trade shows taking place in Toronto, Canada; New York, New York; and Berlin, Germany.

Tasked with organizing an international event such as a conference or trade show? If so, you’ll likely need to coordinate with speakers, exhibitors, sponsors, and participants from around the world.

While project and task management tools will help you keep track of everything that needs to be done, you’ll need a reliable, convenient, and affordable communications method for making dozens of international and group calls.

Consider signing up for a pay-as-you-go international conferencing plan and getting international virtual phone numbers. Here’s how each can help you organize your next event.

Using Global Conference Calls for Event Planning

Let’s say that you will be planning upcoming trade shows taking place in Toronto, Canada; New York, New York; and Berlin, Germany. For each venue, you’ll need to hold conference calls with caterers, facilities managers, stage managers, public relations professionals, and other people both locally and within your own home country.

Holding a traditional conference call proves difficult because many participants can’t dial your country’s toll free number and may balk at dialing direct due to concerns about the potential cost.

By using a pay-as-you-go global conferencing plan, you can hold international group calls as needed as well as issue local phone numbers for Toronto, New York City, and Berlin.

Everyone dials a local number, yet they’re connected to your global conference call. It’s that easy, and by using a pay-as-you-go global conferencing plan for your event planning calls, you pay only for the minutes you use. Once you no longer have a need for international conference calls, you can stop using the service with no worries about monthly fees or early termination penalties.

Using Virtual Phone Numbers for Event Planning

Many of your calls will be one-to-one, making it smart to also get virtual phone numbers for your contacts to call you. In this example, you could get a virtual phone number for Toronto, Canada; another virtual number for New York City; and another one for Berlin, Germany.

  • Create a convenient method for your contacts to reach you — Use these numbers to interact with local vendors, facilities managers, speakers, sponsors, exhibitors, PR personnel, and others involved in planning or participating in your event.
  • Give prospective attendees a local number to call — Publish virtual phone numbers on your website and other marketing materials to give your international attendees a local means of contacting you, the event organizer. While you may be physically located in another country, participants from Canada, USA, and Germany will be able to call you using a local virtual number for the country they are in.
  • Use your virtual numbers to make low-cost international calls — Since you can change the ring to number of a virtual phone number to any phone, you could use your virtual phone number to make cheap international long distance phone calls. For example, while in Germany, you could change the ring to number of your Germany virtual number to your office in Singapore. Instead of risking your hotel’s service, simply dial a local number and take advantage of the low per minute rates from your international virtual phone number service.

These are but a few use cases for both global conference calls and virtual numbers.

We’d love to hear how you’ve put these services to work for you.

 

Repurposing Your International Conference Calls

You never know when a valuable discussion will arise on international conference calls. Be prepared by recording them.

Holding international conference calls is a fantastic way to interact with participants around the globe in real time. Not only can you connect using a group audio conference, you can also get more mileage out of your calls by repurposing them.Repurposing Your International Conference Calls

Ideas for repurposing group audio conference calls include:

• Distributing a full or partial recording to participants – Depending on the nature of the call, you might even charge for access to the recordings.

• Use audio clips in PowerPoint presentations – Did an important discussion take place that’s relevant to your next presentation? A short excerpt of that discussion could be a powerful soundtrack to your slides.

• Use audio clips in blog posts or podcasts – Your subscribers may enjoy a taste of the audio conference either in blog or podcast form. Use short excerpts as a teaser to download the full MP3 recording.

• Create an article around a discussion – Whether you interviewed an industry leader or discussed the pros and cons of adopting a new technology, you may have fodder for an in-depth article. Instead of starting completely from scratch, get out the transcript and build an article around the most engaging part of the discussion.

• Extract audio or text-based testimonials – If your international conference calls involve product feedback or training, participants may have some wonderful things to say about your products and services. The recording could be filled with potential testimonials. Extract a few choice testimonials, contact the original speakers, and ask if they’d mind if you used their comments as a testimonial on your website or marketing materials. Many will be more than willing to allow you to do so, and they’ll be relieved that they don’t have to do anything to make it happen.

Below are a few ways to get the most out of your international conference calls.

1. Record your international conference calls. Most international conference call service providers include an audio recording feature. Make sure to announce to the group that the call is being recorded. You may need to obtain permission from other speakers to reuse their talks. For example, if you intend to create an audio CD of a tele-seminar and you’ve invited a prominent industry leader to deliver the keynote, make sure that your intentions are clear and that you have the speaker’s permission to use the recording in any manner you see fit.

2. Have the recording transcribed into text. While editing an MP3 recording and packaging it as an informational product is easy enough, you may also want to have the discussion transcribed into text. Transcriptions add value to those who prefer to read and skim through content instead of listening to a lengthy discussion. Some people will listen but later refer to your transcript as a refresher. In addition, once you have the transcript, you have the building blocks in place for other text-based pieces. For example, with a little editing, sections of your international conference calls could become blog posts, special reports, or even eBook chapters.

3. Determine what can be shared and with whom. Obviously, if the call is intended for internal company use only or contains confidential information, you shouldn’t make it available to the general public. On the other hand, if you use international conference calls to educate, inform, or train customers and business prospects, then it may make sense to repurpose some of that content with other customers and business prospects. Use both the MP3 recording and the transcript to highlight key areas of the call that you may want to use later. Write down the location of the desired audio in hours, minutes, and seconds so that you can easily find it later.

4. Start reusing the content of your international conference calls. Once you’ve decided what to share and with whom, it’s time to start sharing (again, assuming you have permission and the use is appropriate).

You never know when a valuable discussion will arise on international conference calls. Be prepared by recording them.

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Making the Most of Team International Conference Calls

Should a crisis arise or a team member need immediate feedback from other members, it’s easy to initiate an overseas conference call.

Team Conference Phone MeetingIs your team scattered across the globe? While online communications tools allow for global collaboration, they are no substitute for team international conference calls.

After all, the ability to hear voice tone, inflection, and other verbal cues is lost in email, message threads, and social media. Not only that, team international conference calls take place in real time which allows your team to interact quickly and {tooltip}efficiently{end-texte}Predictably reliable international connections and audio quality{end-tooltip}.

At the same time, team international conference calls can be difficult to coordinate due to time zone differences. Depending on the number of participants and the countries involved, costs can also become a concern. Thus, you’ll want to make the most of team international conference calls. Use the tips below to plan an efficient group conference call.

1 Use a pay-as-you-go, no-contract international conference call service with low per minute rates for the countries involved. Pay-as-you-go plans are ideal for teams that may use the service irregularly.

With a pay-as-you-go plan, there are no monthly fees or minimum usage requirements. If you do not use the service one month, you don’t pay for it. If you have a busy month with multiple team international conference calls, you simply pay for the number of minutes per participant used. When the project ends and the team breaks up, you can stop using the international conference call service without incurring an early termination penalty.

2 Allow team members to host international conference calls on the fly. With a reservation-less scheduling system, your team can hold team international conference calls as needed. Should a crisis arise or a team member need immediate feedback from other members, it’s easy to initiate an overseas conference call.

3 Allow team members to take turns being the moderator of team international conference calls. By rotating duties, each team member has the opportunity to determine the best time for the call, schedule the call, create the agenda, lead the call, moderate questions and answers, and follow up with recordings and notes.

With shared duties, no single team member becomes overburdened with teleconferencing responsibilities. At the same time, each team member learns what’s involved and will be more likely to become a better participant as a result.

4 Encourage team members to follow a similar format for each group conference call. Using a standard format breeds familiarity and makes planning easier. Create a basic template for your calls’ agendas. Your team moderator will simply need to fill in the blanks and distribute the agenda and call details to participants prior to the call.

5 Encourage team members to stick to a strict time limit. Not only will this keep your team international conference calls within budget, it will also keep each call on track. Once the call begins, the moderator will be responsible for ensuring that each agenda item is covered within its allotted time.

6 Suggest the use of MP3 recordings. Recording each team international conference call is a simple matter of clicking a button. Doing so ensures that team members can go back and listen to the call later or share the call with business partners, new team members, or members who were unable to attend the call live.

Help your team communicate in real time with team international conference calls. With a pay-as-you-go global conference calling plan and the tips listed above, your team can make the most of their time together in a group audio conference.

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Best Rates for International Conference Calls regardless of Attendee Location

Using the dial-out feature also can reduce the cost of your call, you’ll also have fewer absentees and be able to call participants on demand without waiting for them to dial-in.

Best Rates for International Conference CallsWant to reduce the cost of your international conference calls? If your international conference call service provider charges you per participant per minute, the best way to reduce your costs is to use the lower dial-out rates.

Why use the dial-out feature on a Global Conference Call?

There are two basic ways to connect international participants to a global conference call:

Let the participants dial in or use the leader dial out feature. International conference call services that support dial-out tend to charge lower per minute rates for dial-out calls than for toll-free inbound calls from international countries.

For example, if a caller dials in from a high cost country with rates of 50 cents per minute, a ten minute call for that participant would cost $5.00. However, if rates for dial out were just 10 cents per minute, that same call would cost just 50 cents. The savings could be dramatic, especially if you have multiple callers from high cost countries.

The same is true of callers using mobile phones in some countries. Rates for mobile access could be significantly higher than expected. In many countries, mobile phones are more widely used than landlines as well.

Pay attention to the various per minute and mobile rates listed for the countries your participants will be calling from and consider using the free dial-out option. This simple step could reduce the cost of your global conference call dramatically.

In addition, some countries do not have toll free access numbers. If this is the case, your participants will either have to dial an international phone number to reach the teleconference — and they will be stuck with the international long distance charges associated with doing so. Using the dial-out feature solves this problem. The system enables the chairperson to dial their international phone number through the conferencing bridge.

Moderator Dial-Out

If you have a single participant in a high cost country, you could use the moderator dial-out feature to call that person directly at the time of the call or add a participant at any time during the call.

Using the dial-out feature also can reduce the cost of your call, you’ll also have fewer absentees and be able to call participants on demand without waiting for them to dial-in.

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Conducting Your First International Group Audio Conference

With an international teleconference, it’s often difficult to schedule a time accommodates everyone due to time zone differences.

Holding a group audio conference is a fantastic way to communicate with a geographically diverse team or group.

Group International Audio ConferenceNot only are group conference calls less expensive than meeting in person, they are much more convenient for everyone involved. If participants are located around the globe, you’ll appreciate the savings and convenience. However, holding international conference calls is a little different than holding domestic ones. Here’s what you need to know to make your first international group audio conference a success.

1. Start with an international conference call service provider. Since you’ll have participants calling from around the world, each will need a convenient method of reaching the conference. As you know, each country has its own dialing conventions. You want each participant to feel comfortable dialing your group audio conference. Working with a service provider who specializes in group international conferencing gives you access to local and toll free numbers for each of the countries involved.

2. Take advantage of “dial out” rates for high cost countries. Rates vary by country with some countries being dramatically more expensive per minute than others. For those with high costs, use the service provider’s “dial out” service to dial participants in those countries directly. You will almost always get a substantially lower rate per minute when you do this. In addition, you can preprogram these numbers so that the system automatically dials participants at the appointed time.

3. Familiarize yourself with moderator controls before the call. Invariably, someone on the call will leave his or her microphone unmuted, subjecting the entire group to distracting background noise. Fortunately, you can mute callers. Make sure you know how before the call begins.

4. Have an agenda. A group conference call is a cost effective alternative to other types of conferences. However, you will still be paying on a per minute, per participant basis in most cases. In order to ensure an efficient meeting, map out an agenda in advance and stick to it. Not only will this help you stick to your budget, your participants will appreciate a well-organized group conference call that respects their time.

5. Record your group audio conference call. With an international teleconference, it’s often difficult to schedule a time accommodates everyone due to time zone differences. However, if you record your call, you can later distribute the recording to those who were unable to attend in person.

Holding a group audio conference is relatively easy to set up and execute — if you choose the right international conference call service. Look for a provider that supports the countries involved, offers the best audio quality, and offers user-friendly calling features such as MP3 recording and automated dial out.

aitelephone.com does all of the above and more. With low calling rates, toll free support for over 100 countries, 24/7 operator assistance, and no contract, term requirement, or monthly fees, your next group audio conference is sure to be a resounding success!

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