At this point, your company has probably been spending endless hours and resources focusing on Google+, right? You’ve been adding customers to your circles, joining communities, sharing content, and getting +1s left and right.
What’s that? You’re not doing any of those things? We didn’t think so.
Like many others, you’ve been skeptical and hesitant to embrace Google+.
Well, the good news is you’re not alone. The bad news is you’re missing out on a serious opportunity to increase your influence, drive sales, and market your brand.
Despite the platform’s shaky reputation, there is one feature of Google+ that has companies tuning in. This unsung hero of digital marketing is called Hangouts On Air, and it deserves your attention.
From chefs and musicians to fitness instructors and pet enthusiasts, companies are finding Hangouts On Air to be a powerful content marketing tool. This untapped resource is a chance to:
- Provide value to your customers with interactive content
- Promote your brand and convey your values
- Improve customer loyalty and engagement
- Connect with potential business partners
- Improve your Google+ presence
- Increase your number of YouTube views and followers
What makes Hangouts On Air special is that they act as real-time living, breathing human media. They allow you to communicate with customers, post unique content to your website and social networks, and add videos to your YouTube channel…for free. Hangouts On Air are live-streamed to your YouTube channel as a broadcast, meaning anyone can watch the Hangout live. It’s then recorded and saved to your channel, so it can be shared anywhere by simply embedding the video code.
If these reasons aren’t compelling enough to make you start planning your first Hangout On Air, take a look at some of the companies racking up +1s and taking names while proving the power of Hangouts On Air.
Back in 2012, Cadbury decided they needed to engage with a younger, more tech-savvy audience of consumers aged 18 to 25. With this goal in mind, Cadbury ramped up their Google+ efforts and planned their first Hangout On Air.
For one day only, Cadbury allowed anyone on Google+ to join their exclusive chocolate tasters circle. Cadbury then sent each of these Google+ers three chocolate bars, with nine lucky participants awarded the chance to participate in the live On Air Taste-Off.
During the Hangout, Cadbury shared exclusive information about their newest chocolate bars, listened to consumer feedback, and answered questions.
Measuring success meant proving that Hangouts On Air would increase social shares and followers For Cadbury, the proof was in the chocolate pudding. Cadbury’s data showed that their first three Hangouts On Air boosted their Google+ followers by 150,000.
Interested in joining the next Cadbury Hangout On Air? You’re in luck; it’s on March 4th and it features the infamous Cadbury Crème Eggs. Chocolate lovers beware.
FIAT USA recently held a contest called the Band Prix to help hardworking local bands get the break they deserve. They invited local bands to submit their music to the FIAT USA Facebook page for a voting round from FIAT USA’s Facebook fans. Over six thousand bands submitted music. Voting narrowed 6000 down to four finalists and one grand prize winner, who received a guest appearance on VH1’s Top 20 Countdown and $5,000 in new gear.
Once the winner and finalists were chosen, FIAT USA conducted a series of Google+ Hangouts On Air with the bands that allowed fans to chat with band members, share ideas, and get to know the artists.
These five Hangouts On Air were added to FIAT USA’s YouTube channel within the last two weeks and have already driven thousands of views to the FIAT USA YouTube channel and contributed to their more than 10,000 channel subscriptions.
Last year, Netflix embraced Hangouts On Air when they shared their Q2 earnings reviews through a Hangout On Air, rather than a traditional press conference. Netflix CEO Reed Hastings saw Hangouts On Air as an opportunity to connect face-to- face and address questions from investors and the media all at once. After receiving positive feedback from their first Hangout On Air, Netflix continued to share their Q3 and Q4 earnings results through this medium..
BakeSpace.com is a digital publishing platform for cooking enthusiasts and an early adopter of Google+ Hangouts. After being embraced more by Google+ than Facebook (they have about 24K Facebook fans and over 1 million G+ followers) BakeSpace turned much of its attention to their Hangouts On Air.
BakeSpace now provide weekly Hangouts On Air called Kitchen Party Live to the 1.3 million G+ users who have added BakeSpace to their circles so far. Their ongoing Hangouts bring together amateur foodies and celebrity chefs alike, creating a place for all cooking enthusiasts to share recipes, explore innovative cooking techniques, and provide tasty inspiration.
Renowned guitar makers Taylor Guitars teamed with Daria Musk, the singer-songwriter who has become fast-rising star thanks to Hangouts On Air, to put on a series of Hangout concerts and a live guitar giveaway to generate attention around both the company and the artist.
When Daria Musk added her one-millionth follower on Google+ (after only eight months of using the service), Taylor Guitars agreed to give away one of their signature guitars to a lucky fan.
Taylor Guitars continues to use giveaways through Google Hangouts to connect with the nearly 3,000 loyal fans.
Good news to all SEOs out there: we’re not the only advocates for Google+. President Obama seems to believe in the power of G+ too.
More than 1.4 million people have started followed the White House since they we joined Google+ a little over a year ago.
President Obama and others in the White House are using Hangouts On Air to conduct a series of Fireside Chats that allow real people to ask the President questions about the state of the U.S. and mattes affecting their local communities.
The power of Hangouts On Air is undeniable. Have you or your business experimented with Hangouts On Air? Have you found any effective strategies to make your Google+ Hangouts awesome? We want to know!