Scheduling a number of people for a face-to-face meeting is getting tougher and tougher. And the cost of traveling to a client’s location to make a presentation is also on the rise. There’s little more disappointing than getting there and finding that half the people scheduled have been called away by other priorities. Of course nothing beats face-to-face for making the deal, which is why recession or not, business people continue to travel to their customers in order to close escrow. But for introductory presentations intended to gauge interest, my partners and I are finding web-based presentations are a pretty good way of making a pitch and seeing if there is interest to pursue further.

We’ve tested a number of on-line presentation services such as Go-To-Meeting, SlideRocket, and WebEx. They’re all very good with a huge portfolio of options and tools such as highlighters, cursor swapping, etc. But regular readers know that I’m a “less-is-more” kind of person, as I find that 99% of options (in anything) usually distract from the task at hand.

Up until now, the sheer complexity of setting up an on-line presentation has kept me from using such a service at anytime other than a real emergency. Not to mention the cost…all of the services named above ask  for pretty hefty monthly subscription fees (around $50) regardless of frequency of use. Since we do about 6 of these types of presentations a year, an annual subscription of $600 seems rather steep.

Then there’s Glance. We’ve just started using this ultra-simple, uber-fast, and inexpensive service ($9.95 per use) and really love it. It offers virtually nothing…and that’s it’s greatest strength. You email the meeting attendees your Glance URL, they click on it and are immediately connected to your presentation. Whatever you see on your computer screen, they see. For audio, we find the simplest way is to just call in on a land-line and get put on speakerphone at the client’s location. That’s it. Worth a look if you are in a situation where you would like someone else to share your screen.