This is a “step by step” guide on how to engage in “Social Conferencing” As far as I am aware this could be a new term to describe the use of “video” within Social Media. It will be a highly disruptive development and is really exciting. early adopters will be at a significant advantage. My experience suggests that you need to follow a 5 stage core process which can be really quick – and there are 3 other optional processes that will significantly enhance the experience.
1. Set yourself up on Google+ The easiest way is to set up a “skeleton” profile with only the basic information. Name, Position, Company and Portrait photograph. Photograph is important. You will also need a device equipped with voice and dynamic image capture. This could something like the new Google Nexus 7 which is built to support Social Conferencing or a Webcam and microphone attached to your Desktop.
2. Next set up a “one to one” video call with one of your friends. Select their profile on Google+ and connect. Simple as that. Oh and did I mention that you need friends – an essential ingredient for social conferencing. Then play!
3. Set up a 3 or 4 way standardised Google+ hangout by either inviting your friends on or inviting one of your circles on. You now need more that one friend !! Then play !
4. Now you are ready for Hangouts on Air. Go into Google Hangouts a look for one that interests you and join. Initially maybe just watch and listen and when you think you know how it works join in the conversation. Now you can have hundreds or thousands of friends!
5. Join a scheduled Hangout on Air. A good facilitator will create a calender event well in advance and you will be invited to join the event. When you sign up you can see the other people who have signed up and you can chat in advance of the event, during the event and after the event. A HOA has two types of membership – the speakers (up to 10) and the participants which can be unlimited (if set up this way) The panel discussion and live presentations are played within the Event and can be replayed on a post event Youtube recording.
These 5 stages are really straightforward and although they may sound difficult when documented – they are really instinctive.
The Optional processes that I would highly recommend are
6. Complete your profile – which will only take 30 minutes and make best use of the image options. Google+ is by definition a visual medium and it would be a shame not to take advantage.
7. Learn how to use Chat and Talk. After that you will only need an old fashioned telephone to talk to people who are not connected
8. Learn how to set up and run your very own Hangout on Air. How do you engage an audience for your event before, during and after the actual scheduled meeting time.
9. Social media now provides a superb tool set but it rises to a completely new level when you synchronise “Time Window”, “Geographical Region” and “Topic or Interest” It moves from a broadcast to a real-time discussion.
If you would like to engage with “Social Conferencing” I would be happy to help. I am hoping to put together a video tutorial for each of these stages