Virtual Meetings in a Snap

By Heather Baldwin

You’re on the phone with a prospect who is very interested in your product or service, but wants to see a diagram showing exactly how the technology works, or wants to see some data on how your product can reduce costs. Wouldn’t it be great if you could beam yourself to a meeting with that prospect so you could strike while the iron is hot, as they say? In essence, you can do exactly that using the proprietary Enterprise Meeting Management and Accountability (EMMA) technology from Fugent, Inc., a Columbus, OH-based company founded in 2000.

Fugent allows users to host virtual meetings and conferences and share presentations, Web tours, applications, videos and other collaborative tools almost instantaneously. You can set up and enter these meetings within seconds through a customized meeting page featuring your photo, a company logo and customized information about you. It takes about 15 seconds to set up a meeting, a task you can do while you’ve got the prospect on the phone, says John Detwiler, CEO of Fugent. With your slides pre-loaded onto the site, it’s simply a matter of giving your prospect access. And while you’re setting up the meeting, you can send your prospect to your page so he or she can see your picture – the next best thing to meeting you in person. The prospect then simply clicks on the meeting you’ve set up, enters his or her name and email, clicks the I Agree button for a privacy statement and he or she is in the meeting, which is powered by WebEx technology. “Fugent Virtual Meetings bridges the gap from a normal phone call to being able to show visuals,” says Detwiler.

Fugent also does all the back-end reporting and tracking, enabling a sales manager to measure the results and effectiveness of the meetings. For example, the manager can go into the system and track all the meetings that took place within a range of dates, by sales rep, by company – however he or she wants to see it. “You can see who attended the meeting and the products that were discussed,” says Detwiler. You can then correlate those meetings to actual sales to spot trends or track the productivity of sales reps, he adds. In other words, says Detwiler, “You can get the reports that will prove the return on investment of Web conferencing.”

The price of Fugent’s services vary depending on the size of the organization, but expect between a $5,000 and $10,000 set-up fee, plus a monthly fee of between $100 to $200 per seat, again depending on the size of your organization. For more information, visit