What Retailers Can Learn From Obama’s Google Hangout

 

Yesterday President Obama participated in a Google Hangout. In my opinion Hangouts are the most innovative feature on Google+ but I’ve yet to see them widely adopted by retailers. If the President can participate in a Google Hangout, so can you!

Here are 5 easy ways for retailers to get started with Google Hangouts:

1. Product Feedback

Are you about to launch a new product line? Why don’t you give away a few of your new products to 5-10 of your biggest fans and host a Google Hangout to get their feedback?

Not only will you build the relationship with some of your most loyal fans, you will get direct feedback from your target market. If the Google Hangout goes well, you can record the session and host it on YouTube.

2. Promote Your Flash Sales

If you host flash sales that have a set date and time, you should consider hosting a Google Hangout right before your sale goes live. If your flash sale is set to go live at 10am, why not host a Google Hangout at 9:30am to build up the hype?

A few members of your team can discuss the products and do live product demos for your audience. Keep in mind that while only 10 people can share their screen in a Google Hangout, an unlimited amount of people can join them live. So you could send out an email with the link to your Google Hangout 30 minutes before your flash sale goes live.

3. Celebrity Endorsement

If you are a large retailer that has existing relationships with celebrities, you should try to get them on Google Hangouts. Imagine 50 cent, Tom Brady, & Betty White on a Google Hangout using your products?!?

A recording of your celebrity Google Hangout would be the ultimate marketing asset for you to use on your landing pages, emails, and social media profiles. If you are a smaller retailer who doesn’t have a large budget, maybe you could settle for Carrot Top?

4: Social Media Brainstorming

Most retailers struggle with trying to come up with new campaigns to gain followers on their social media profiles. Are you considering a few different YouTube campaigns? Do you want to run a social media contest? Are you throwing around a few different promotion ideas?

Come up with a list of potential marketing campaigns and host a Google Hangout to get live feedback. Who knows, your audience might surprise you with their creativity and come up with something that you would have never considered.

5: Live Usability Tests

Google Hangouts allow users to either use their web cam or share their screen. Are you considering a site re-design? Host a Google Hangout to get live feedback from your audience.

Here are a few other usability tests to guide your Google Hangouts:

  • Give your Hangout participants a task to see where they get held up
  • Have them complete an order to identify the holes in your checkout funnel
  • Show them a few mock ups of your email designs to see which they prefer and why

 

That’s it! Hopefully you are now inspired to host your own Google Hangouts.  If you have yet to get your feet wet on Google+, here’s how to set up your own Google+ Brand Page.

Also if you missed the Obama Google Hangout yesterday, you can check it out below:

About the AuthorRick is the CEO of CPC Strategy. He started working with online retailers at PriceGrabber and co-founded CPC Strategy in January of 2007. Today CPC Strategy manages the comparison shopping campaigns for over 100 retailers. See all posts by this author here.