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Introduction to Google Hangouts
When Google launched its new social network, Google+, many in the business community thought that it would be comparable to Facebook. The basic functions are pretty much the same between the two networks; users can share information with their connections that they think would be worthy of their time.
Businesses have their own page on Google+ that functions much like a Facebook fan page, in that it holds information and allows the owner or staff person to share information. Of course, there are cosmetic details and some other functions that are different, but for the most part Google+ resembles the other social network.
Why Google Hangouts are Important
A Google Hangout is an online application inside of Google's social network, Google+. The application exists for every user that has an account on Google+.
Recently in the past year, users that have had Google accounts of any kind, including Gmail, YouTube and Google Drive, had their accounts turned into social network accounts. In other words, everyone that logs in to Google in any way, is effectively entering their Google+ account.
The intent of Google was to make this an interesting way to interact with people. However, the reaction of Internet users has been mixed.
Differentiate Your Business With Google Hangouts
One of the benefits of using Google Hangouts is that you can easily show customers what makes your business different from your competitors. Marketing experts have long said, that every business should be able to state openly why their customers should do business with them and not with other businesses. This statement is called a company's unique selling proposition, or USP.
Every USP should include an undeniable truth-the choice to be made for a certain product or service should be clear, based on the things that matter to the customer. However, one of the problems with having this truth appear only as a written statement and not as a proven fact, is that it is very difficult for a prospect to visualize what is meant if he or she doesn't know the company or business owner.
Using Google Hangouts to Build Your Customer Base
Google Hangouts can be used to increase the number of customers that are in line to buy your products and services. By using both the community aspect and presentation features of Google Hangouts, you can connect with your customers on a personal and intimate level long before they actually make a purchase. By keeping your customers engaged between purchases, you'll be able to steer them toward those things that you produce, that are new, as they are released.
As you know, not every customer is ready to buy from you when they meet you for the first time. In addition to that, your existing customer base isn't always going to be ready to purchase your newest releases when they hit the market. So what are you going to do between those times?
How to Use Google Hangouts To Increase Sales Exponentially
A company can grow its business in three primary ways. First, they can increase the total number of prospects that the company has. Second, they can increase the total dollar value of every transaction that a customer makes. Or, third, they can increase the total number of transactions that a customer makes with them in a given period of time.
A simple way for a company to increase the size of its community, is to increase the total number of prospects that the company has with Google Hangouts. By continuing to increase the Google+ community that a company has, they will get more people to view their Hangouts, and as a result, they will increase the number of customers that they have to purchase their products and services. However, some companies are using Google Hangouts to get customers to...
The New Social Media Webinar
Companies have become used to being able to host online meetings and seminars which are called webinars. This would require a business to establish an account with a firm that would host the technology necessary to provide training and education to those who were watching.
A webinar is typically a presentation by someone that would either be sharing their computer desktop or presentation software (PowerPoint). The benefit of doing webinars is that the company can demonstrate live what is happening on their computer screen while explaining the relevance and/or benefit to their audience.
Good News from Your Customers (Video Testimonials)
One of the best ways to use Google Hangouts is to record planned conversations you have with happy customers. While much of the focus on 'reputation management' services for small businesses focuses on Internet based reviews, you can help your company's online standing by strategically placing positive content in places where customers will find it.
Often when a company receives testimonials from their customers, they will place that information in written form for others to read on their website and in their sales literature. Testimonials are always good for customers to see, even if they don't read them fully. They are psychological triggers that marketers call social proof...
Keeping Customers Engaged With Expert Interviews on Google Hangouts
As you begin to grow your online community on the Google+ social network, you'll want to keep them engaged. What is meant by the term engaged is that they would be informed and interested by those things that you share about your company that might benefit them. One of the best ways to demonstrate that what your company is doing will benefit them, is to provide helpful information that they can use to overcome their problems and accomplish their goals.
You can use Google Hangouts in order to provide the information that your customers and prospects need, by giving them expert advice. This will involve finding out the nature of those things that cause your prospects and customers to struggle.
No Special Equipment Needed - Just Your Mobile Device
You might think that because Google Hangout seems to be such a powerful application that you would have to have a super powered computer to participate. And even if you own the latest in computer technology, you realize that other participants not in your company or elsewhere may not have nearly the computing power that you have. This may force you to conclude that while Google Hangout is useful, it may not be ready for widespread use in your promotional efforts.
Fortunately, since most of your business partners and many of your consumer buyers have smart phones, Google Hangout is a possibility for just about everyone. Since they have become widespread, Google Hangouts have become accessible by both the iOS and Android device universe.
Sell Your Services with Google Hangouts/Helpouts
Google is now developing a new application to its Hangouts platform called Helpouts. Helpouts will use the Google Hangout platform in order to connect service providers with those in need of assistance. Although it is unclear as to the full nature of Helpouts, it is certain that Google will combine the use of its payment processing and the Hangout technology.
That means that if part of your company's offerings include services to either consumers or small businesses, you'll want to make sure that you are familiar with how to use Hangouts effectively. At this time, this is what experts know--service providers will be available in a Google database to those conducting searches for services. Service buyers will be able to talk and/or chat with the provider using Hangouts.