Google Plus, the social network created by Google is a relative newcomer to the social scene. The social media juggernaut was launched in 2011 and is the second biggest social media network after Facebook. There are now 300 million active monthly users on the platform, up from 190 million since May 2013. Here are some Google+ hangout tips you can make use of.
According to some it’s a game-changer that brings a basket of goodies to the marketing table. One of those is Google Hangouts, the sleek and simple to use video chat room feature that enables users to participate in live video chats.
It allows up to ten people to talk together at one time (the host and nine participants) and unlimited crowds can watch live and pre-recorded broadcasts called ‘Hangouts on Air’. And what’s more it’s free to users with a Google account.
Hangouts is an outstanding platform for businesses to demonstrate thought leadership and forge stronger and closer bonds with their customers. Here are a handful of great ideas for your Hangouts that you can use to your business advantage:
Create live demonstrations – use the Hangouts feature as a vehicle for small, interactive workshops to demonstrate how to use your products and services. Encourage audience participation by inviting viewers to ask questions.
One of the standout features of Hangouts is you can stream the video live on Google+, your YouTube channel and your website and record it for later playback. No special equipment is needed for this. Even though you can only invite nine people to participate in a Hangout at any one time, your potential audience is huge.
UK-based confectioner Cadbury embarked on a Google Plus campaign to connect with a tech-savvy younger audience around the world. One of its approaches was to host Hangouts that allowed consumers to interact with chocolate tasters, participate in the creation of replica Google+ page made of chocolate and talk to Olympic athletes.
The results were phenomenal. Cadbury’s original goal was to secure 20,000 new followers. They connected with 1. 2 million people. This lead to a 7.5% increase in traffic from Google sites and contributed to its new Bubble Bar achieving sales of £8 million since launch.
Improve your customer service – one of the biggest factors that drives sales and gets companies talked about is excellent customer service. On Hangouts you can come face to face with your customers and help solve their product-related issues. You can use the feature to handle complaints, provide tips and training and request customer feedback.
Host Q&A sessions – open up the video chat room to your nine participants and let them ask you anything about your industry, services and products. You know all there is to know about your business and have expert knowledge of the field you are in.
A Q&A session is an excellent vehicle to display your deep reservoir of knowledge and establish yourself as a subject matter expert. Even though only nine people can take part via webcam, there is a chat button so you can interact via text with all your viewers.
BakeSpace, a Los Angeles-based digital platform for cooking enthusiasts is another Hangouts success story. To date, it has hosted more than 40 Hangouts covering cooking tips and recipe ideas. They have resulted in 360,000 users adding BakeSpace’s business page to their Google Circles. Contrast this to BakeSpace’s Facebook page that has approximately 14,200 followers.
Broadcast important announcements – when significant events are happening in your company use Hangouts to announce them to the world. It’s like having your very own press conference. You could even host a launch party for a new product.
Market research – invite your customers to join you in an informal Q and A session where you can ask them what they’d like to see more of from you, and to discuss what they like and dislike about your current offerings. This can be particularly useful after you’ve launched a new product or service to see how things are going.
These are just a small handful of ideas, but the possibilities are limitless. To pick up some inspiration about what you could do in your own Hangouts check out Google’s Shared Calendar Events and search through the posted daily list of online happenings.
Google Hangouts are intimate spaces and there’s a lot of scope to get creative and connect in personal ways with your client base. Enjoy talking directly to your followers and the increased exposure it can bring.
From MavSocial | Social Media Marketing Software for Business