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How to make a conference call - a complete guide to teleconferencing

There's more than one way to make a conference call, from video conferencing to straight-up multi-participant phone calls, and more than one provider to choose from, but what you'll find with many operators is they'll either charge for the service, ask you to sign up with them, or both - this means they'll then have access to your data and may even sell it on to third parties who will then bombard you with emails and phone calls for other services.

That's not the case with ConferenceCall.co.uk - all you and your participants need to make a conference call to anywhere in the world is a landline or a mobile.

There's no signup. No fee to pay. And you can make great savings on the cost of conference calling to anywhere in the world.

What is a conference call?

A conference call, also known as a teleconference, is a telephone call in which callers can talk to several people at the same time. A conference call can be designed to allow callers to participate during the call, or just listen in without participating.

How do you set up a conference call?

You can set up a conference call in three simple steps:
  1. Set up your Conference call
    Choose a date/time of your conference call.
  2. Invite participants to the call
    Send all participants an invitation with your PIN, date/time and dial-in number(s).
  3. Start your call
    At the agreed time, all participants dial in and enter your PIN to join your conference call.

How do I invite people to a conference call?

Go to the ConferenceCall.co.uk home page and enter your email address and you'll be given a free personal identification number (PIN) and the option to invite UK or international participants and request a free wallet card.

Once you've chosen UK or international participants you'll be given an email template into which you'll have to enter the [DATE], [TIME] and [SUBJECT] of the conference call and copy and paste it into your email program before sending out to up to 100 participants.

And to make sure no one forgets you can send free SMS reminders to each participant's mobile or smartphone (UK numbers only) that will go off 15 minutes before the conference is due to start.

How do I start a conference call?

To start your call, as the host, just dial into the relevant conference call line and enter your PIN. If you are hosting an online meeting, check out our screen sharing facility, provided by Crankwheel.

When all the participants have received the email, all they have to do is dial the number in the email on the agreed time and day and enter the designated PIN code to join the conference.

Calls start from as little as 5.8p per minute to UK numbers and calls to mainland Europe start from as little as 9c per minute, and as there’s no contract or minimum usage terms it really is the simplest and most cost-effective way to teleconference.

For a full rundown of countries and call rates, click here.

And be sure to regularly check back to the blog for the latest business and conference calling news, and top tips for when working from home.

How do I dial into a conference call?

As a participant, simply dial in to the relevant teleconference number at the allotted time, enter the PIN given to you by the host, and you will join the conference as soon as it starts.

For a comprehensive list of conference calling questions and answers, check out How it works, at ConferenceCall.co.uk.

How to make a conference call from an iPhone

To make a conference call on iPhone, follow these five simple steps:

  1. Dial the number of the first person you want to call
  2. When the call connects, press the add call plus button
  3. Then dial the number of the second person and wait for the call to connect
  4. Tap the merge calls button and the call will become a conference call
  5. To add more people, repeat steps 2-4.

The problem is, this can be very time consuming and you are limited to a maximum of five people on any one conference call.

The simplest way to conference call from an iPhone is to dial 8300 to connect to ConferenceCall.co.uk and join using the PIN given by the call organiser.

If you are organising the conference call, you can get your unique PIN by entering your email address at ConferenceCall.co.uk.

Once you have your PIN, you can use it to set up a teleconference for up to 100 participants whenever you need to – there’s no need to book a reservation or take out a contract, you only pay for the calls you make.

For more information, check out How to make an iPhone conference call

How to make a conference call on Android

You can also make a conference call directly from an Android device by calling the first person then tapping the Add Call icon once the call is connected. Then dial the second person and hit the merge or merge calls icon. Repeat this for each participant.

It's much simpler to use the ConferenceCall.co.uk 8300 shortcode, which can connect up to 100 participants on a single call on any mobile device or smartphone running on Android, iOS, Windows, or any other operating system.

How to make a conference call on WhatsApp

To make a conference call on WhatsApp, go to New Group and add all participants to that group. Then simply tap the telephone logo, add all the contacts in that group who you want on the call, then hit the telephone logo for a voice-only call, or the video logo for a video call.

How to make a free conference call

To make a free conference call with ConferenceCall.co.uk, simply dial in on 033 3006 7775. Using this free call number means we won’t charge you a penny for using our service, and if your mobile or landline package come with inclusive minutes, there should be no charge from your provider either.

And, unlike some other providers who cap the length of your free call, with ConferenceCall.co.uk, you can use our free call number to talk for as long as you like.

Can I activate a personal welcome message?

A personal welcome message is a great way to add some personality to your conference call and make it unique to you and your business.

So, if you introduce yourself as "Alexander Graham Bell", the message will read "Welcome to the conference call of Alexander Graham Bell”.

As the UK’s simplest conference call service, recording and adding your own personal welcome couldn’t be easier – just follow the steps below to set up your own message:

  1. call 020 – 704 81 338
  2. enter your PIN code
  3. follow the menu
  4. speak your personal welcome message
  5. confirm the personal welcome message or speak again.

As soon as we’ve received your personal message, you’ll receive an e-mail to the e-mail address linked to the PIN code, with the request to confirm the change. Once you have confirmed the change, the personal message is active.

Can I pre-program my phone?

When participants dial in with their mobile phone, they can pre-program the conference call. This way you do not have to enter the PIN code again after dialling in. With most used mobile phones (iPhone, Samsung, etc) you can do the following with example PIN code 12345678:

  1. Create a new Contact in your address book (eg ConferenceCall “PROJECT NAME”)
  2. The number is 033 3006 7775,12345678
  3. Save.

You can then dial in to the conference call directly from your Contact List. If you use multiple PIN codes, you can add multiple Contacts. The “comma” on the iPhone is the “Pause” key. The “comma” on a Samsung / Android device is “hold down the asterisk so that the comma appears”