For business owners and professionals, Google+ Hangouts are an easy (and free) way to increase customer engagement and build brand presence online. Specifically, Hangouts on Air is wonderful tool to take advantage of for your marketing efforts – sharing events, promoting topics you are writing about or building speaking credibility by showcasing your abilities on camera.
Unlike a normal Google+ Hangout that only connects you with a maximum of nine people, the Hangouts on Air feature allows you to broadcast to an unlimited audience. Even better, once your Hangout is completed, it is automatically uploaded as a draft recorded video to your YouTube account. Simply log-in to your YouTube Channel, edit if necessary and publish.
If you are still on the fence about Google+, simply consider the marketing possibilities Hangouts on Air can provide to your business. For example, say you have an upcoming event you want to promote. Instead of sending out another email campaign, you decide you want to try a more engaging method of capturing attention. You decide to record a Hangout on Air with a keynote speaker, giving your audience a sneak peak of what to expect when attending your event. Your marketing team decides to publish the Hangout on YouTube, embed it on your blog, and then tweet and post the link to other social platforms like Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. Voilà – you now have an engaging way to peak the interests of your customers, as well as the potential to reach a diverse audience on different media platforms – all through one Google+ Hangout. Talk about a social media grand slam!
Creating Google+ Hangouts is a fun, easy way to share your story online. However, before getting started with Hangouts on Air, here are five key tips to remember in order to create high quality and professional videos promoting your brand:
- Invest in a High Quality Camera: laptop screen webcams aren’t the best for high quality video. We suggest a Logitech webcam.
- No T-Shirts: remember, this video has the potential to be viewed by customers and prospects – make sure you are dressed professionally. Branding is all about the details, so make sure you have a dress code for online videos.
- Avoid the Dreaded Echo: nothing is worse than playing your Hangout on Air and hearing everything echo. A quality headset is an easy fix for this problem.
- Quiet Please – insure background noise is controlled for the session. Remember, even though it is a Hangout, you want your video to be as professional and high quality as possible.
- Follow Up Details – Google+ allows you to share your screen during a Hangout. When wrapping up your session, share a slide with your audience displaying your contact information, as well as any other links important to what you are discussing.