Earlier in March I had the opportunity to work at +Alexandria Small Business Development Center to present a workshop entitled, Google+ for Small Business. Registrations filled the workshop space capacity within a few hours of Alexandria SBDC pushing out a notification to its clients; a waiting list has formed and if all the stars align, I’ll be doing the workshop again for Alexandria SBDC in the coming weeks. And, while the attendees of the workshop have the last say on the efficacy of the training, I’d like to think the workshop was a success on many levels. So, to keep the momentum going for the workshop participants, I placed my thinking cap on and brainstormed ideas on how to continue reinforcing the value of Google+ for their businesses after the workshop. After many good and not-so-good ideas that I mindmapped, I came up with a short list and shopped the idea around a few colleagues and the staff of Alexandria SBDC.
I concluded that two Google+ Hangouts where I invited only the workshop attendees were the answer; one for Google+ basics where attendees can tell their stories–successes and challenges–and another for Google+ intermediates where we can delve slightly deeper into the Google+ ecosystem beyond the material that we could cover in the workshop. Oh, so what is a Hangout? Check out the video below for a great video by Google explaining the concept. In short, it’s a way for you to interact by video (with audio) with up to 10 other Google+ users from your computer, smartphone or mobile device. You can even share Google Docs that are being live-edited, share your screen, and type live among the Google+ Hangout participants.
While I’ve been in dozens of Google+ Hangouts, both personally and professionally, this will be the first time we’re officially hosting a Hangout. I’m hopeful that these will go well and we can plan to host more on a variety of Web and digital technology topics. We may even be able to start doing training for Google+ right within the network!
Below is a video of the power of Google+ Hangouts. Of course, we won’t be trying the mobile power of Google+ Hangouts (or our singing voices for that matter) for this first Hangout session. However, just think of the power that Google+ Hangouts could unleash for your Small Business if you implemented this technology at the core of your company’s operations and marketing infrastructure!