Meetings can be one of the biggest time-wasters we can be involved with. They can be directionless, unfocused, long, and worst of all: pointless. There have been countless strategies put out there to combat the tedium of meetings, such as having “chairless” meetings, limiting meetings to 15 minutes, conducting meetings online and many others. But I haven’t found a single strategy or tool that improves the meeting concept better than MeetingBurner, and it just came out of beta today and is now available to the public.

MeetingBurner has released their fast, elegant, and free webinar platform to the public today, and I’ve had a chance to use the service while it was in its beta stage. During that time, MeetingBurner saw overwhelming demand, registering more than 20,000 small business users and hosting over 100,000 meeting attendees — including yours truly.

How MeetingBurner Came to Be

The company was founded by John and Paul Rydell, two brothers who were fed up watching the world waste billions of dollars a year in inefficient and ineffective online meetings. After spending a decade building a CRM business that supports more than 100,000 small business owners, the Rydells set out to build the world’s best online meeting platform with a vision to make it fast, simple, and efficient.

How MeetingBurner Works

MeetingBurner’s download-free interface lets participants join a meeting up to five times faster than existing solutions, and I’m a fan of not having to add any software to the mix to make things happen with a service. The platform used can scale to an incredibly vast size, as it is in built in the cloud with patent-pending technology to eventually allow for meetings of virtually any size. The company says they are looking to handle meetings of up to 1000 attendees, which is just unreal. By “leveraging the cloud” to support online meetings and conference calls, this allows MeetingBurner to offer a professional grade solution that is fast and reliable, and yet won’t break the bank for small businesses and freelancers.

The Benefits of MeetingBurner

During my test run of MeetingBurner, I came across a few of these features, and some of them hadn’t been available until today (like Autopilot, PayPal integration and the mobile platforms). These are just a few of the benefits of using MeetingBurner to conduct your meetings and webinars:

  • Speed – Attendees click once to join a meeting, and it loads lightning fast.
  • Simplicity – Anyone can join meetings without calling tech support.
  • Integration – Phone bridges, Skype, and webinars in perfect harmony.
  • Sharing – One click to share a recorded meeting on YouTube.
  • Price – Free and fully featured with no distracting ads for attendees.
  • Meeting Temperature – Instant data that lets you drastically improve your pitch, follow up with interested attendees, and turn your meetings into a powerful sales tool.
  • Autopilot – Record a meeting on Sunday, but have it play on a Tuesday as if it’s live.
  • PayPal Integration – Charge attendees directly from the registration screen.
  • Mobile – Native Android functionality and iPhone/iPad apps to view meetings.

How to Register for MeetingBurner

MeetingBurner is fast and simple to get into — so much so that virtually anyone can use it, free of charge. It takes less than 10 seconds to sign up for an account and you can be hosting a webinar and sharing your screen with business colleagues, friends and family in seconds. You can register for a free MeetingBurner account at their website now.

While the free version is definitely worth considering, here are all of the version MeetingBurner is launching with today:

  • MeetingBurner Free – Fast, beautiful, and always 100% free. Up to 15 participants in online meetings, integrated phone conference line, email support, and no ads to your users like other freemium solutions.
  • MeetingBurner Pro– $39.95 a month. Everything in Free + up to 50 participants, full telephone support, meeting recording, enhanced security encryption, and more.
  • MeetingBurner Premier – $99.95 a month. Everything in Pro + up to 1000 participants, telephone support, autopilot meetings, PayPal integration, meeting analytics, and more.

The pricing structure and accompanying features offered by MeetingBurner literally blow WebEx and GoToMeeting out of the water. In fact, even before announcing the pricing, MeetingBurner had already seen a huge influx of adopters from the very incumbents they’ll be competing with.

“More than 75% of our users indicated that they had switched to MeetingBurner from GoToMeeting or WebEx. More than 80% loved their experience enough to share MeetingBurner with somebody else, and 88% responded that they liked it so much that they would pay for it upon release,” says President John Rydell.

“We set out to build a BETTER webinar platform than the incumbents and give it away for free to completely disrupt the industry,” Rydell continued. “The feedback we received after our most recent release was enough to convince us we’re ready to open the doors, and compete head-to-head with the big boys.”

Why I Use MeetingBurner

I’m not big on meetings in general, but when I do have them I’d like them to be as easily digestible as possible. MeetingBurner is simple to use, is as frictionless as any other service of this magnitude that I’ve seen and has plenty of upside for me in other areas of my online work (i.e. running webinars, etc.). If you’re looking for a new way to hold meetings and conduct webinars, head over to MeetingBurner and give them a shot. You can also grab their iPhone app here, which brings you meetings and webinars on the go.

When it comes to online meetings and webinars, simply put — MeetingBurner is a game-changer.

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