If you have been following my content here on my blog for some time you will know that I have been exploring how organisations are using Google Hangouts for business including lead generation and social commerce.
I use Google Hangouts On Air in my business both privately with clients and publically for events and in the last year I have been using them instead of other webinar tools that I have membership fees for many of my public digital marketing education live online events.
However there are still some limitations with Google Hangouts On Air especially if you wish to use them for lead generation and capturing emails. Yes there are work around and I know people who host Google Plus private communities and deliver paid events using Google Hangouts On Air private videos, but to do that you must have all attendees have a Google Plus account and that for some organisations is a step too far.
I use two different tools which integrate with Google Hangouts which enable people to register to watch my Hangouts On Air if I want to use the tool for webinars and enable me to capture email addresses and generate leads. One currently retails at US$297 per annum and another starts at US$37 per month. And yes I still use GoToWebinar and Skype for meetings, webinars and events online.
But I realise that not everyone is able to invest at that level, so I was delighted to have the opportunity to preview a WordPress.org plugin that is being re-launched this week and at an introductory one time price of US$27.
NOTE: The re-launch price ends at midnight Sunday 10 August ET and will increase to US$197.
I mention this is a re-launched plugin – the Hangouts On Air WordPress Plugin was released last year but has recently been refreshed and rebranded and this week is the launch week.
WHY THIS WORDPRESS PLUGIN IS WORTH INVESTING IN
Here are eight reasons I would consider investing in the WordPressPlugin to host lead generating webinars using Google Hangouts on Air:
1. The Plugin enables you to use Google Hangouts On Air technology to host your webinars and you can enable people to register using their email address. This means they do not have to have a Google Plus profile to watch the event and you can restrict registrations to people who sign up
2. You can integrate your autoresponder to send reminders about your forthcoming event and also followup messages post the event
3. You can enable a replay of your Hangout On Air – this means that you can continue to build your email list for previously recorded Hangouts On Air
4. The premium WordPress.org plugin is available with a one time fee so you don’t need to worry about annual fees – it is such a low price versus what the price will be after the re-launch it’s really worth investing in even if you don’t install it for the next year!
5. When you invest in the plugin you will get the option of an additional upgrade for more templates for your webinar landing pages – personally I would invest in them as they are designed to be mobile responsive which is an essential feature today given the increasing number of people looking at content using mobile devices
6. You can enable a count-down timer on your webinar registration landing page to remind people how long it will be until the event is live streaming
7. You can customise the landing pages with your images to support your event
8. There are a number of bonuses available if you invest in the plugin – see the details at the bottom of this article.
WHY YOU SHOULD NOT INVEST IN THIS WORDPRESS PLUGIN
Here are the key reasons I would not invest in the WordPress Plugin to host lead generating webinars using Google Hangouts On Air:
1.You have no plans to host webinars as part of your digital marketing plan
2. You do not need to generate leads or sales from your webinars and do not need a buy button to appear on your webinar page at the relevant time during your live stream or replay of your event
3. You have no interest in learning how to use Google Hangouts On Air – to get the most from the plugin you will need to invest time in learning how to use Google Hangouts On Air
4. You can not afford the investment in hosting a WordPress site for the plugin to work from – the plugin can be used on any domain, but it needs WordPress.org to run. It is recommended that you set up the plugin on a fresh installation of WordPress.org on a subdomain or subfolder of your website to separate the pages for your webinars from your main website
5. You alreaady have a tool or methodology that allows you to generate leads when using Google Hangouts On Air and enable buy buttons to appear during your live stream
6. You already have a tool that enables you to re-purpose your Hangouts On Air as evergreen webinars and continue to let you generate leads and sales after the live streamed event
FINAL THOUGHTS ON THIS HANGOUTS ON AIR WORDPRESS.ORG PLUGIN FOR WEBINARS
I will be installing the Hangouts On air webinar plugin in the next few days and will be testing it myself. I have reviewed all the training materials including the PDF manual and the training videos for the plugin and is you have someone who can support you with WordPress.org development this plugin is definitely worth exploring.
As an advanced user of Google Hangouts On Air and someone who teaches other organisations how to use them in their business I had some questions that were not addressed in the membership resources. I emailed the developer and it took them 18 hours to reply and they did so when promoted by a second email so that is not ideal – I am guessing they were overwhelmed with questions given they are in the middle of a lauch.
Scroll to the bottom of this article if you are interested in the questions I wanted covered and the answers I received – this is especially relevant if you are a superuser of Google Hangouts On Air.
If you are considering using Google Hangouts On Air for your business and want to capture leads and want people to watch the event live streaming on a domain that you own, plus access this ability for a ONE TIME FEE of just US$27, this is a product launch you can not afford to miss.
THE ADVANCED QUESTIONS I ASKED OF THE HANGOUTS PLUGIN DEVELOPER
As a Google Hangouts ‘superuser’ I had some questions that were not covered in the training resources. I have listed below the questions I asked and the responses I received.
Note – I had to follow up as I had not heard anything back 18 hours after asking my questions and when the developer came back to me he advised that his immediate thought on reading my email was ‘Whoa that’s a long one’ and did not have time to reply to my questions. He came back to me with brief answers but if you are a superuser of Google Hangouts On Air you will realise why I am asking these questions.
Question: Is there a membership area for RunClick that I need to access for updates?
Answer: The plugin will auto-update.
Question: In the autoresponders I could not see 1Shopping cart – is that available as an integration?
Answer: Not at present, no
Question: In the floating buy button that seems to be for replays – you mentioned you would cover that in another tutorial for live events – for information that does not seem to be on the video training page?
Answer: Sorry, had deleted the video as there was a change with it, it should be back within 24 to 48 hours
Question: It’s interesting that you enable all the Hangout Toolbox apps to be used such as comment tracker – I can see that you did the videos recently as the Showcase app in in your videos – does that also work with your software?
Answer: Yes all Google Hangout software works the plugin
Question: Does the software work with Google Plus Pages or just Google Plus Profiles?
Answer: It works for any Hangouts
Question: It seems as though the plugin is working with HOA which means that the Hangouts will also appear on someone’s profile and will also be on their YouTube account – is that correct?
Answer: Yes this is correct
Question: Are there plans for this to integrate with YouTube Live where you can set up truly private Hangouts so people who have not paid to access someones event cannot see it?
Answer: We are looking into it
Question: If someone buys the plugin and Hangouts On Air change I am guessing that you will update the plugin?
Answer: Yes – correct
If you decide to invest in Runclick Webinar Plugin for WordPress.org through the links on this page please note that I will receive a referral fee and you can read my disclosure policy here – perhaps you will be happy for that to happen as I have invested the time in reviewing the product and provided the above review to help you decide if this is a relevant product for you to invest in.