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Do-It-Yourself vs. ProVision

It's important to weigh the pros and cons of these two approaches when planning your webcasts.  Which solution is right for you?

As you plan your webcasts, an option you'll probably consider is "Do-It-Yourself."  With this approach, you'll pay for an off-the-shelf webconferencing application (you've probably seen TV advertisements from the major players).  Typically these applications can be purchased at a per-minute rate, or you can buy a monthly license for "seats" that you can use on an unlimited basis.
Cost Comparison
On the surface, per-minute prices for do-it-yourself solutions may look appealing.  But to understand the true cost of your webconference, you'll need to factor project management costs and labor.
Hidden Costs and Hidden RisksDo-it-yourself solutions require substantial labor, effort, and planning on your part.  Moreover, you are required to handle all the unfamiliar details and administrative tasks of webcasting in the context of a high-stakes live presentation. 
Realistic Cost Analysis.  Webcasts don't produce themselves.  Even if you purchase a webconferencing application, you're still a long way from a quality online event.  To determine your true costs, add up all the hours that will be expended in managing and producing this event.  Consider both the actual cost and the opportunity cost of this labor.  Then weigh the risks of doing it yourself.
The Trade-Off.  If your company plans to produce frequent webcasts (say, weekly), then paying an employee to manage your webconferences  perhaps by adding to staff  is indeed likely to be the most cost-effective approach.  If, on the other hand, you plan to webcast less frequently (say, once or twice per month or less), then outsourcing your webconference production with a service provider like ProVision is likely to be more cost-effective.
Quality Comparison
In addition to saving you money, outsourcing your webconferences with a full-service producer like ProVision carries another significant advantage:  You are assured of a high level of sophistication and technical proficiency in your online events.
This level of refinement is difficult to achieve when one simply "dabbles" in webconferencing; yet superior production values are critical if you wish to project an image of professionalism and competence.  No one wants to make embarrassing and costly blunders on "Game Day."
Feature Comparison
Per-minute pricing for webconferencing applications will typically get you an entry-level product.  For a more robust feature set, more money is required ... frequently, a lot more money.  For example:  Will you record your webcast?  That's probably extra.  Online hosting of the recording?  Extra.  Do you require online registration, with e-commerce?  Extra.  Online hosting of downloadable materials, like handouts?  Extra.  You get the idea!
Each ProVision webcast comes with the following features and services ... standard:

  • Professional Moderation for entire webcast
  • Integrated telephony (teleconference services) included with webcast, at no additional charge
  • Moderator-managed question-and-answer sessions, via phone and Internet submissions
  • Online Registration hosted by ProVision, with registration hyperlinks provided to you for posting on your website
  • Customizable online registration form, to capture all information requested by you
  • Online registration with e-commerce for pay-to-attend events, hosted by ProVision
  • Automated confirmation and reminder emails, issued to all registrants by ProVision
  • Online Hosting of Downloadable Materials (e.g., PowerPoint handouts)
  • Online testing and grading, or program evaluation (if requested)
  • Promotional Assistance in the form of generic marketing copy
  • Instructor orientation and training
  • Accessibility to participants with at least a 56K modem and a telephone on a separate line - 24-hour technical support, help desk
Maintaining Focus
When ProVision produces your webcasts, y
ou avoid distractions from your core competencies.  Outsourcing is a prudent way to maintain focus on your business strengths.  ProVision will showcase your strengths with quality online events. 
The Bottom Line
Compared with a do-it-yourself effort, ProVision delivers a more cost-effective and professional webcast with minimal headache and time commitment from you.  Our full-service production enables you to relax and let our professionals handle all the details.

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