Let’s face it: meetings are about the least amount of fun one can have during their day at work. Not only are you forced into a room that is too small to accommodate everyone, but you’ve got to drop everything that you’re doing just to be there. Then the meeting starts late, runs long, and you’re left trying to fit a full day’s work into the time you have remaining to you.
What if attending a meeting didn’t need to be such a time-consuming proposition? Better yet – what if meetings could include employees from remote offices so that travel time and expenses could be reduced?
There are two solutions available to professionals today that may be able to accomplish those goals and much more. In the GoToMeeting vs GoToWebinar debate, you’ll find that attending a meeting can be as simple as a single click of the mouse.
Here are the key differences between these two platforms to consider.
1. Participant Count
GoToMeeting tends to be focused on a full meeting presentation. Think of it as an online chatroom where individuals in the meeting can interact with one another. That means you can have a group discussion that is progressive and meaningful without being overwhelming. It also stops one person from dominating the discussion, which can happen in a traditional meeting.
Because of that design, GoToMeeting caps the number of participants within a meeting to 100v people or less at one time.
With GoToWebinar, you have a product that provides more of an instructional format. It’s like attending a training session in your company, where a speaker stands up front and talks to the rest of the class. Because of the speaker/listener setup, GoToMeeting can accommodate many more attendees for a webinar – up to 1,000 people.
To maintain control with that many people, there is a “raise your hand” feature with GoToWebinar so you’re not stuck with dozens of interruptions every minute.
2. Participant Communication
With GoToMeeting, you have the setup of a traditional meeting, but in an online format. Everyone who is attending the meeting is able to converse with everyone else who has been approved to be there. It is intended to be more of a conversational platform that invites collaboration.
GoToWebinar is designed to be more of a presentation-based meeting option. It is intended to provide one person with the opportunity to disseminate important information to a large group of people at the same time. For that reason, the attendees invited to a meeting on this platform are not able to communicate with one another.
3. Intended Purpose
The names of the product are an indication of what the intended purpose of the platform happens to be.
GoToMeeting is intended to be a collaborative product. It’s the type of online platform you’d want to use if you were going to discuss a marketing strategy or develop ideas for a new product. It is an especially useful tool for teams that work remotely or have members that telecommute because it allows for instant collaboration for a minimal cost.
GoToWebinar is the type of product to use when offering specific, generalized information to the general public or the company as a whole. It offers more flexibility because of the teacher/student design, but limits the product to be good for presentations instead of collaboration.
Both platforms allow users to schedule a meeting or a presentation on a specific day and at a specific time.
GoToMeeting takes their scheduling options a step further. Users can start a meeting, using this platform, whenever they want. That means a meeting can be setup instantly. The only requirement is that the participants in the meeting are available to attend. Guests that are in the meeting would need to pre-register, so their participation is not quite as instantaneous.
GoToWebinar does not have an instant scheduling option at all.
5. Information and Reports
GoToMeeting is like working with an online chat transcript. You also have access to the number of attendees that are in the meeting. Many users have found that it can still be a good idea to take notes during the meeting to provide a summary of the various group discussions that occur. Having every attendee read the entire transcript of what has taken place can be problematic – and it may not even be available.
GoToWebinar offers numerous reporting options, providing higher levels of after-meeting data that can be used to establish metrics. Not only do you receive reports of the registered guests and overall attendance, but you can also use surveys and polls on the platform to get a sense of what everyone is thinking or feeling during the presentation. That makes it possible to focus on certain details that the group may be struggling to understand or put your brand’s focus squarely on market interests.
Both GoToMeeting and GoToWebinar offer users a free trial to determine the usefulness of the product. They are both provided by LogMeIn, a company that specializes in providing interactive collaborative and instructional tools.
GoToMeeting pricing begins at $19 per month. Attendees can interact on any device they have with a data connection. There is a toll-free option, HD video conferencing, screen sharing, and recording available.
GoToWebinar pricing begins at $89 per month. It offers many of the same features as GoToMeeting, but allows recordings to be shared online. Guest panelists can be invited to the webinar as well.
LogMeIn also offers free live demos of both products if you wish to see them in action before taking advantage of the 14-day free trial that is offered. Contact a sales representative at 1 (888) 646-0014 to discuss which product you’d like to see demoed.
GoToMeeting vs GoToWebinar: Which is Better?
When comparing GoToMeeting and GoToWebinar, one is essentially comparing two products that seem similar, but are very different.
GoToMeeting is the better solution for teams that want to facilitate collaboration. Team members can come into the meeting from virtually anywhere, assuming they have a data connection and have pre-registered for the meeting. The instant scheduling is a nice feature as well as it allows teams to continue moving at their own pace.
GoToWebinar is a better solution for instructors and general information dissemination to a large group of people. It is not designed to be interactive, which is why it does not serve well as a general meeting platform. It’s something that will help teachers teach and students or employees learn what it is that is expected of them.
Have you used GoToMeeting or GoToWebinar? What did you think of the experience?