Voice Broadcast | Voice Blast
A Voice Broadcast or Voice Blast is a term given to the idea of sending lot’s of different people the same pre recorded voice message much along the lines of how you can send a single email to multiple recipients. This is the same concept as a “robocall” that many of us are familiar with when a political group has a prerecorded message call or survey, or a local organization or school has a message sent to parents or employees. There are many good uses and applications of the idea of doing a voice blast or voice broadcast. On this page I will try to make a good compilation of the VOIP providers that provide this service as well and where possible I will give some detail on their plans and pricing.
Voiceshot.com – this is the first company I became aware of that did this voice broadcast or outbound message service. I wrote up a bit of a review of voiceshot once upon a time… and here is what I’ve written on their VOIP entry: Using voice shot you can make outbound prerecorded message calls to a specific list of recipients. You can also conduct surveys using voice shot. They can also let you send text messages to a group of recipients. They also have services that allow for rapid deployment of emergency alert voice or text messages (the kinds of things that school systems and businesses may be interested in to get the word out to employees/students.) They offer inbound services as well with virtual receptionist, 800 numbers possible. With these inbound services call extensions can be forwarded to other numbers making essentially a virtual office possible. You might also like this review of voiceshot. No start up price for outbound calls. The calls are charged at 12 cents per minute (within the US) for successful calls. THis article gives an idea of how easy it is to use curl to trigger their api to make a call on a form submission. It could be a nice touch for an online form campaign. (Developer API)
Callfire has a voice broadcast service (voice blast) as well. They do appear to offer pay as you go plans and advertise competitive rates. (3.5 cents per minute) It all looks fairly straightforward. Create your list via excel or comma separated value text, upload the list. Upload or call in your voice message and launch the campaign. (Cheap rate too.) They appear to support many of the same features as voiceshot including the interactive calling for surveys and the ability to drop to a call center if someone chooses to. (Developer API)
Blast Companies.com has a voice broadcasting service. The procedure seems similar: upload a list through the web interface, create and launch your campaign via any touch tone phone. Their pricing link currently comes up with a page could not be found error. Their features though also include the ability to drop to a call center, to repeat the message with a keypress from the recipient, automatic redial and support for dialing phone extensions.
Call-center-tech.com has a voice broadcasting service. They have interesting legal information about voice broadcasting at the bottom of the page. They also sell voice broadcasting software and equipment (auto-dialers). It appears that their service carries a monthly fee and perhaps a setup charge (they mention that online registration will save non-profits the setup fee.) Setup fee is $125 for their standard plan, $25 per month for 5 day a week/16 hour a day access. (They have a more expensive premium plan for emergency 24×7 access.)
Voiceblast.com – they have a pay as you go plan with no upfront setup costs or monthly fees. Simply upload your call list, record your message and launch (I assume they want you to buy time before you launch the campaign.) There is a members plan that gives a certain number of calls per month as well.
Call-em-all offers voice broadcasting – (they call it an automated calling service). Upload your list, schedule the call and record your message on their toll free number. Busy redial, option to repeat and leaves a message on answering machines/voice mail. No setup fees, no monthly minimum charges. They do have 2 approaches to paying though. The first is a pay as you go where you buy call units of 30 seconds each. The smallest buys of call units cost more per call unit (15 cents per unit if you just buy 100). The cost goes as low as 6 cents a call unit though (and they have a link to get a quote if you have a larger call volume.) There is also an unlimited calling monthly schedule that you could pay x amount for x number of numbers to call per month. Messages can be up to 2 minutes long.
ifbyphone advertises “smart voice broadcasting” – I read they have a blackberry app as well by the way. Developer API. It looks as though to do voice broadcast you have to go with their Advanced (34.95) or Complete (49.95) service (plus usage amounts.) You do get 100 free minutes each month though. Extra minutes start at 7.9 cents per and work their way down to 3.5 per minute in bulk.
Protus.com offers voice broadcast. All connect time is charged, similar features to the others. Low volume pricing starts at 11 and 12 cents per minute. (Developers API)
Accelerated Voice Solutions Claims to have a downloadable “web based” call manager program. It’s not clear to me if this is flash based, activex, or a download executable. Judging from their FAQ it is a downloadable windows application. (Macs and Linux/Unix need not bother I guess.) Pay as you go. No setup, no monthly fees. The minutes start at 3 cents a minute for their 5,000 minute package. (Although it’s not clear to me if you have to plop down $150 and buy 5,000 minutes to get started.) Per minute plans go down from there with more minutes. (Billed in 6 second increments.)
kwikcall.com offers robo calls and appointment reminders. Group call is their automated voice blast or voice broadcasting service. You essentially start out by buying credits toward calls (these credits last until they are used up.) They claim competitive prices, but you need to contact them for a quote. Everything appears web based and similar to the other services… upload a call list, record your message, schedule (buy credit of course) and launch the campaign.
Other services will be featured as there is time.