When you’re on the road, the solutions that run your online meetings have to play nice with your mobile devices. That includes being able to not just attend, but also run meetings. Unfortunately, many meeting solutions are not mobile responsive and some of those that are only allow attending – not managing.

Three free solutions are Skype, Facetime and Google Hangouts.  Facetime only works with Apple iOS based devices such as iPhones and iPads. Not all of your attendees would be able to use Facetime.

Both Skype and Google Hangouts can be accessed from mobile devices, laptops and desktops. Both offer apps for smartphones. But attendees have to create an account and login.

If you plan to do presentations regularly, you may want to choose a solution that does not require downloading an app or creating an account. For example, ClickMeeting.com allows you to run a meeting from any device including your type of tablet, smartphone or blackberry. They have an app center to integrate your meetings with social networks and your calendar.

Most importantly, meetings can be run from your mobile device – not only attended on one. To see how easy it is to run a meeting from a smartphone, this video shows how it is done from an Android device

Why Use an App For Online Meetings?

Sure, you could just phone people. But designing a meeting place has many advantages – especially if you do a lot of similar meetings such as presentations to prospective clients, employee meetings, or training.

Brand your meeting room with your company logo and colors. Add an agenda to keep meetings on track. Create an attractive waiting room to encourage attendees to log in early.

  • Host meeting
  • Prepare in advance if desired
  • Customize branding and layout
  • Add an agenda
  • Open registration if you wish so others may spread the word and join
  • Personalize your room: header, logo, color scheme, layout, change skins
  • Invite participants and presenters

Most important is that many popular meeting solutions do not support running a meeting from a mobile device. Some haven’t even made it possible to attend meetings without bringing up a laptop or desktop. Even if you plan to run all your meetings from your office, life has a way of surprising you.

By choosing wisely, even if you get caught away from the office you can still run your regular meetings. Getting stuck in traffic or an airport is such a common occurrence.

Never pass up a last minute surprise opportunity to meet with a valuable potential client. Project just the image to close that sale by keeping your meeting solution in your pocket or purse.

Available Apps

Integrate your email and calendar with your meeting apps. Plug in your favorite browser. Add media from YouTube, Adobe, Flickr, Apple iWorks and Microsoft Office. Automatically share your upcoming meetings to Twitter. You can even create a learning platform to organize your meeting presentations using Moodle.

Run your meetings from anywhere using your iPhone, iPad, Android or Blackberry. Stream audio and video or use a whiteboard. Enable text chat to answer questions. And record it all to re-use or for your attendees to replay at their convenience.

Whether you decide to use Skype, Facetime, Google Hangouts, Clickmeeting or something else, be sure to run some test meetings to see what works and learn to use the advanced functions.

You’re mobile, so all of your business apps must be, too. Don’t assume they are. Verify with the vendor which devices they support. And then test to make sure they actually work. Waiting until the actual meeting could leave you embarrassed!

Best known for writing about Small Business Advice, Gail Gardner is known as @GrowMap on Twitter and other social networks. She sometimes writes about the latest gadgets here and on DIRJournal.

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