Social Media On A Shoestring: Going Vocal With Vokle

We’re taking a break from social media perspectives in this post – and heading over to the realm of social media tools.

The last time I spoke about social media tools, I talked about Drop.io, and why I am impressed by what they offer.

I have been toying around with four new social media tools recently, one of them is Vokle. The other three are TokBox, Audioboo and UStream. In today’s post, I wanted to share with you what Vokle offers and why it should be in your social media arsenal.

In their own words, Vokle is a free, elegant, easy to use video townhall platform for broadcasters to take live video questions from their audience.

Some of the features that Vokle touts of are:

  1. Take video and text questions live from your audience
  2. Allows co-hosts – so you can have multiple camera feeds that show up live
  3. Vokle platform is embeddable – technically you can have the video, and the chat embedded on your site – as opposed to having people head over to the Vokle site.
  4. Multiple roles – including a screener role – to privately screen external video questions and text feeds before they go live.

What It Lacks:

  1. Recording. You cannot record your events natively. You will need a third party software to record your events – and chats.
  2. Playback. Since you cannot record your events natively, you will need to make recordings of your events available elsewhere – should you need to.
  3. Privacy. You cannot password protect your events, like UStream. Nor can you dictate domain level privacy control, like Vimeo. Essentially, your events are public – and they won’t go well if you’re planning on a private paid-viewers only event.
  4. Desktop/Screen Sharing. Not supported natively – but you can get past it using third party software like:
  • For Windows: VH Screen Capture, WebCam Max
  • For Mac: CamTwist, CamCamX

What It Replaces:

  1. Webinar platforms like GoToWebinar and DimDim – especially if you want to give out a public webinar. You won’t get inbuilt analytics support from the Vokle platform, but with some foresight, you can build a workflow that still allows you to gather the data and metrics necessary for your event.
  2. Conventional television-style broadcasting platforms like Ustream.tv and JustIn.tv – especially where in co-host scenarios.
  3. Video platforms, like YouTube, Vimeo and Viddler – when it comes to connecting live with your audience. Sure, you can’t have playbacks, but you could always connect in real time and upload over to one of these platforms for playbacks.

Given the recency of the Vokle platform, there isn’t a crowd using it – yet. John Federico of Tech Startups wrote about Vokle last December (that’s about eight months ago), and here is what he had to say:

Already using Vokle are Alex Albrecht, the Creator & Co-host of The Totally Rad Show and co-host of Diggnation; Videoblogger and all-around web video expert Steve Garfield and; Sarah Austin of POP 17, among others.

Iโ€™ve tried nearly all the live video platforms mentioned above for my weekly podcast and will definitely give Vokle an opportunity, especially as we move toward a model of having more distributed guests rather than in-studio appearances.

And if you’re super interested in seeing more samples of what a Vokle session looks like, check out Brad McCarty’s write up on The Next Web – along with a video of Huffinton Postโ€™s Arianna Huffington doing a Vokle session.

Have you used Vokle in the past?

How did it work out for you? I’d love to hear.

P.S.: I will be doing a series of Vokle events in September with some sweet giveaways lined up. I won’t let the cat out of the bag yet, though. Keeping the surprises wrapped up under the sheets ๐Ÿ™‚

(Image Credit: Vokle http://www.vokle.com)

6 Responses to Social Media On A Shoestring: Going Vocal With Vokle
  1. shant
    August 9, 2010 | 4:16 pm

    Nice article Kapil!

    As for some of the missing features, you’ll be happy to hear that they’ll be released in the very near future! It’s also great to hear you’ll be having some events in september, looking forward to them ๐Ÿ™‚

    best,

    -shant (shant@vokle.com)

    • Kapil Apshankar
      August 10, 2010 | 12:23 am

      Good to see you here, Shant. And thanks for the note.

      I have a bunch of Vokle ideas cooking up right now – you’ll see what comes out of them in the next few weeks.

      I can’t wait to see what new features come out on Vokle ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Mike CJ
    Twitter: mikecj
    August 10, 2010 | 12:49 am

    It was the lack of a recording facility that stopped me looking further into Vokle, but maybe they are working on that.

    Looking forward to your events…
    Mike CJ recently posted… Time

    • Kapil Apshankar
      August 10, 2010 | 11:48 am

      Shant from the Vokle team tells me a bunch of new features are coming to Vokle real soon.

      Keeping my fingers crossed about what’s coming our way. Lack of recording feature can definitely be a hindrance. It just need extra resources – and one more thing to do every time we go on air.

      Being able to natively record is so much easy – and convenient!

  3. Benjamin
    November 29, 2010 | 7:23 pm

    Can anyone recommend a (free) third party software to record events and chats?