Our First Experience with Google+ Hangouts on Air

Yesterday we had our first experience with Google+ Hangouts on Air. Let me be frank here – it was also my first real experience hosting a webinar. I was well prepared, having researched my topic and prepared my Prezi in advance, and by the time the event was to start, I was stoked! 

Before you have your first experience with Google+ Hangouts on Air, I encourage you to do your research. Read the guides telling you how to set-up and actually start your event, how to turn on screenshare and questions, how to mute and hide other participants, and how to share on YouTube. Trust me, you will appreciate having the knowledge when you enter the dashboard and stare at it with a thought of “What is this!?”

Having said all this, here is what I learned…

Hear No Evil by Billy Rowlinson







1.     Even though your broadcast hasn’t started (or has ended) doesn’t mean your audience can’t see or hear you.
Upon stopping my broadcast, my awesome assistant Jake sent me a Skype message that he could hear me typing. At first I thought he meant he could hear me forwarding through my Prezi. Nope. What he meant was that even while we were Skyping he could still hear me because I hadn’t closed the Hangout window.

While the final video Google sent over to YouTube didn’t include the audio or video before or after the event, the original recording of the event included EVERYTHING. I was mortified. No, I hadn’t cussed, burped or had gas. However I had my music playing before the event, I wasn’t dressed for a webinar (Come on, people! I work at home!), and immediately after I stopped the broadcast I had a coughing fit. And Jake (and the other present audience members) has seen and heard it all.

TIP: Even though the final video will only show the broadcasted portion of your hangout, do not enter the hangout until you are ready to begin. Make sure your music is off, and try to look presentable.

The hands of time by I_Believe_2.     Limited time to start your broadcast. I entered the Hangout about 10 minutes early to make sure I had all my settings ready. I had Questions turned on, my camera turned on, my screenshare set up and audience members hidden and muted. Unfortunately at showtime the “Start Hangout” button had disappeared. I needed to re-enter the Hangout (closing my original window) and re-set up the event, AFTER the event was supposed to begin. Not good.

TIP: Again, do not enter the hangout until you are ready to begin, or only a minute or so before. Soar through the settings, getting them set up as you want, as begin your broadcast. The last thing you want to do is keep your audience waiting.

Mute by woodleywonderworks3.     Mute audience is not reliable. I love my audience, I really do, however I did not want to hear them, their pets, kids and coughs/sneezes when I reviewed the playback. In the end, I considered the recorded Hangout unusable and re-recorded the entire presentation using Snagit’s video capture feature. I was frustrated, to say the least. I had run through the original event smoothly, hadn’t stumbled, and had done (in my opinion), great! Re-recording the event stressed me out, causing me to mess up several times, and causing me to take over an hour to record a version I was happy enough with to publish.

TIP: You may start your broadcast immediately, however chat it up with your audience before actually starting your presentation. Ask them (repeatedly) to mute their microphones, and make sure this is actually working before going into the good stuff.

My presentation yesterday was “Turn Tweets into Profit.” If you are interested in viewing it, I have included the video below. In the meantime, if you have any suggestions about how make your first experience with Google+ Hangouts on Air an entirely positive one, please include them in the comments field below.

Turn Tweets into Profit

Nearly 9,100 tweets occur per second on Twitter. Are you engaging in ANY Twitter activity throughout the day?
In this video we offer several tips for you to follow to maximize Twitter engagement gain clients and/or customers.

*****

Kim SuttonKim Sutton is the Managing Partner and Chief Everything Officer of The Sutton Companies, including Sutton Strategic Solutions and Sutton Creative Studios.  She is a graduate of The School of the Art Institute of Chicago where she earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Interior Architecture.

An avid reader and passionate learner, Kim is constantly researching, studying and developing business improvement strategies. When it comes to client work, Kim especially enjoys helping her clients develop innovative marketing strategies and sales funnels, particularly when they are using Infusionsoft to automate all the heavy lifting. To find out how you can further develop your company’s marketing and automation strategies schedule a 1-hour Business Boost Strategy Session by clicking here.

In her free-time, Kim cherishes the time she gets to spend with her husband, Dave (her business partner), and five children. She also enjoys reading, knitting, writing and playing video games.

Get a copy of Kim’s FREE guide, “10 Top Tools for Small Businesses” by clicking here.

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About Kim Sutton

Kim is the CEO of The Sutton Companies, including Sutton Strategic Solutions and Sutton Creative Studios. She is married to her best friend and soul mate, Dave, and together they have six children.
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