YouMail, a maker of visual voicemail and robocall blocking software, recently announced that it has solved a problem often associated with conference calls: gaining access. The company bills its solution as the “World’s Simplest Free Conference Calling Service.”
Lots of conference call companies can claim their service is simple to use, and many do. So what sets YouMail apart from the competition?
YouMail Free Conference Line Distinctives
YouMail’s definition of simplicity basically means users aren’t required to deal with an assigned phone number and PIN. Instead, participants dial the host’s cell phone number and press “8” when they hear the greeting, to enter the meeting.
YouMail does not limit the conference call service to cell phones. The system rides on top of the telecom carrier as an endpoint to send and receive calls, so any digital phone should work. YouMail purposefully emphasizes mobile, however, because, according to CEO Alex Quilici, it reflects the busy “on the go” lifestyle experienced by today’s entrepreneurs.
“These days, people spend a lot of time in conference calls while on the go,” Quilici said in a phone interview with Small Business Trends. “As much as we would like to think people use land lines in an office [to take calls], it doesn’t work that way anymore.”
Traditional Conference Call Approaches
Conference call services tend to fall into one of two categories, Quilici said. The more common is where participants and hosts are assigned an access number and PIN.
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“Everyone knows how frustrating conference calls can be when you’re multi-tasking or just on the go,” Quilici said. “Trying to dial into lengthy, hard to remember numbers and PINs while driving is not only difficult but can also be dangerous.”
A second category is where the host provides an app that everyone has to use to join the call.
“The problem is that it’s difficult to get everyone to download the app and most will wait until the last minute, which can delay the meeting and impact productivity,” Quilici said.
How YouMail’s Conference Calling Service Works
YouMail’s conference calling service requires just three steps:
- Send instructions to participants before the meeting, letting them know to call your cell phone number, and then press “8” to enter the call at the scheduled time;
- When it’s time for the call, participants dial the cell phone number and press “8” after the greeting. The cell number is the conference room, which is why it needs no PIN. Hosts can also tap “Start Conference” in the YouMail app or call a specific number reserved exclusively for them to initiate the conference;
- Typically, once in the room, participants have to record their name, which the system announces. An enhanced caller ID feature lets YouMail know the participant’s name, which it announces automatically.
If the call drops, rather than dialing the number and re-entering the PIN to get back in, YouMail’s service users can hit redial and then press “8” to gain entry. Also, for calls that come in while the host is in the conference, an automated receptionist feature greets the caller by name and sends him an automatic reply containing contact instructions (email, text).
Other YouMail Features
Conference calling isn’t the only feature YouMail offers. Other services include auto-reply, enhanced caller ID, reverse phone lookup, voicemail to text, call routing, custom greetings, call blocking and call recording — all of which are available via a desktop or mobile dashboard. (A free app is available for iOS and Android users.)
Anyone can use YouMail for free, and that includes the conference call capability. Premium versions with more features start at $5 per month. For $10 per month, YouMail supplies users an extra phone number, in case they don’t want to give out their personal cell number.
“YouMail applies intelligence and simplicity to solve call-related problems that small businesses have,” Quilici said. “We want to become your digital receptionist to help you manage your calls, block robocalls and make conference calling easier.”
While it certainly earns points for simplicity and ease of use, YouMail conferencing may be too simple for some businesses, and lack more robust features such as the ability to mute individual callers, see who is on the call, get HD voice quality calling, share documents or integrate with other services.
But if simplicity is what you’re after, YouMail’s conference calling service seems to fit the bill. Visit the YouMail website to learn more.