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In addition to requirements for a robust platform for regional and local web meetings, global technology user group VMUG needed a scalable platform for its annual virtual event. And when they knew their legacy web conferencing solution wasn’t up to the task, VMUG turned to ON24 to provide day-to-day reliability and the muscle to handle virtual events with ease.



Supporting the Virtualization Community

The VMware User Group (VMUG) is an independent, global, customer-led organization, created to maximize members’ use of VMware and partner solutions through knowledge sharing, training, collaboration and events. With over 110,000 members worldwide, VMUG is the largest organization for virtualization users, and its standing partnership with VMware has allowed it to create an ever-growing network of customers and partners who continue to strategically impact VMware products and services.


A Meeting Solution that Couldn’t Cope

To communicate with its membership and handle a variety of use cases, VMUG implemented a webinar program using a lower-end meeting-based solution. However, as their volume increased, they found that their solution had limited flexibility, and its picture and audio quality were insufficient. In addition, it was very difficult to export recordings in order to provide them to presenters for their own marketing purposes. These frustrations led VMUG to search for a high-quality solution that they could use to host multiple activities at the same time without interference.

“We use ON24 many different ways, across all programs, every day.”
“ON24 has given us tremendous flexibility, and we actively use it across all of VMUG’s programs. Our staff can efficiently set up multiple webinars, and we know the system will be reliable and perform as we need. What’s more, our presenters love the presentation console and ON24 widgets, and the ability to place webcasts in the content gateway means that we can extend the value of their content and offer VMUG members more resources.”

— Nikki Kueker VMUG Program Manager


Replacing a Shaky System with ON24

As part of its due diligence, VMUG reviewed ON24’s live and on-demand feature set – including capabilities like chat, polling and Q&A and the ability to effectively manage content using the ON24 Video Media Library and Content Gateway. In tandem with the selection process, ON24 provided VMUG with guidance about what was needed to accomplish a large-scale virtual event and then helped VMUG incorporate innovative design and hands-on labs into their virtual environment.

In addition to finding ways to push the envelope for its virtual events, VMUG evaluated and selected ON24 for its capability to handle more prosaic tasks, including meetings, conference calls, regional meetings and customer events – providing VMUG with a comprehensive, one-stop platform.

VMUG cites the following advantages that make working with ON24 so easy:

  • Easy to use
  • An easy registration process
  • Easy-to-change widgets

In addition, VMUG reports that the content gateway makes webinar organization easy; each webinar is posted to the content gateway with a click of a button, organized by VMware topic so that members can find exactly what they want.

With ON24, VMUG hosts multiple webinars at the same time across multiple programs, with no interference. “It’s important to VMUG that multiple people can be hosting Elite events at the same time. We don’t have to worry about scheduling them on top of each other,” explains Nikki Kueker, VMUG Program Manager. She added that this is especially critical given the wide variety of use cases.


A One-Stop Platform

Today, the ON24 platform serves as the central hub for a majority of VMUG’s virtual communications, hosting local and regional meetings and VMware, customer and partner events on a regular basis. Thanks to ON24’s rock-solid reliability, VMUG hasn’t experienced any issues with scale, and audio/video issues are a thing of the past. On a daily basis, a team of ten uses ON24, leveraging ON24’s ease of use to quickly create branded, professional webcasts and meetings to support VMUG’s community. Webcast attendance has increased 35 percent with the ON24 platform.

In addition, ON24 served as the platform for VMUG’s flagship virtual event. Impressive results for their February 2015 event include.

  • 10,359 registrants and 4,529 attendees
  • More than 900 on-demand viewers
  • 176.6 minutes of average viewer duration
  • Over 28,000 documents and webcasts viewed

VMUG’s post-show analysis found that attendance for the virtual event and full-day UserCon in-person event only overlapped by 5 percent, meaning that they captured a 95 percent market of new individuals – an important metric for a membership-based organization like VMUG.

ON24 Video’s Content Gateway enables VMUG to efficiently offer its members a wide range of on-demand webinars covering topics such as storage, virtualization, hybrid cloud and emerging technologies and data center management. The VMUG content gateway is also embedded in the website and VMUG mobile app. This “on-the-go” access, combined with savvy promotion and seamless, one-time registration, has increased content gateway views by 72 percent in less than
two months.

How VMUG Measures Webinar Effectiveness

Objective:  Replace an unreliable web meeting tool and also support a large-scale annual virtual event.

Strategy:  Implement ON24 Webcast Elite and ON24 Video solutions to achieve improved scale, reliability and performance.

Results:  ON24’s reliability means that there are no issues with scale or webcast quality. A team of ten VMUG professionals uses ON24 on a daily basis to create branded, professional webinars. They offer webcast content via the ON24 Video Content Gateway, extending value for VMUG and its community. ON24 also powers VMUG’s annual virtual event, and the 2015 gathering was VMUG’s best yet, with 10,359 registrants and 4,529 attendees, more than 900 on-demand viewers, 176.6 minutes of average viewer duration, and more than 28,000 document and webcast views. In addition, the organization is reaching new audiences using the ON24 platform, underscoring the value of offering resources via a webinar.