Established in 1996, daily technology news portal, ITWeb is recognised as the trusted voice in South African IT, and a pioneer in their field. “We pride ourselves in exploring innovative technology that will adapt our service offering. In 1997, just a year after ITWeb was established we ran our first virtual press conference – it was held in a chat room without video or audio capabilities” says Sinisa Jovanovic, ITWeb’s Technical Director.
Having been introduced to Adobe Connect’s web conferencing capabilities, ITWeb saw the opportunity to take their hosted event offering online. ITWeb now offers highly customisable and scalable virtual events to their clients – something that has been relatively unexplored in this context. “We were keen to see how using Adobe Connect’s webinar function could make our events more accessible, and reduce the administrative costs when compared to physical events”, says Jovanovic.
Providing Value for Subscribers
“Our primary concern in adapting our offering is the possible affect it could have on our readers – any new technology we implement must be customer focused”, says Jovanovic. Adobe Connect was able to add value for subscribers in a number of areas. By leveraging Adobe Connect for virtual events, ITWeb is able to change the typical conference dynamic from one where delegates meet to engage with content, to one where the content is delivered to delegates in a space that is convenient for them. ITWeb’s subscribers are now able to attend these virtual conferences without travel or time restraints. “We had an event recently where the speaker was talking to delegates from a beach half way around the world – it’s incredible”, comments Jovanovic.
Connect’s easy-to-use interface makes the administration process seamless for both delegates and webinar hosts or presenters. “Adobe Connect has exceeded our expectations in how easy it has been for our readers to interact with the technology”, say Jovanovic.
Minimising Administration – Saving Costs
With over 10 000 subscribers and a small technology support team ITWeb was concerned about possible challenges in running virtual events. The Majority of ITWeb’s subscribers work in corporate environments in which IT policies may prevent them from joining webinars. Log-in and set-up issues were another concern for ITWeb, Connect makes it easy to send out pre-event, customised mailers to those subscribers registered for the event. ITWeb was able to use that functionality to ensure delegates had detailed instructions and trouble-shooting options. “Although we took steps to ensure that our subscribers had support available to them should any issues arise, our concerns were unfounded – 99% of delegates didn’t have any problems joining the event and those that did experienced minor tech issues, such as not having their audio functions enabled. We continue to receive positive feedback on our virtual events”, says Jovanovic.
By adding virtual events to their portfolio. ITWeb has given subscribers a way to deliver and engage with quality content. For organistions wanting to hosts events through IT Web, it means that here is now a more cost effective option. “Without having to pay for venue hire, speakers and travel costs – the savings are dramatic”, says Jovanovic.
ITWeb is a new media publisher, servicing the information technology business sector by providing news, insight, analysis, events and networking opportunities for business and technology managers, professional users and suppliers of ICT products and services.
Since 1996, ITWeb has been at the forefront of South African ICT reporting. From its prestigious publications to specialised websites, ITWeb is known for its vision, innovation and journalistic excellence.