Using Video in Google+ Hangouts
A Hangout is a multi-participant video chat, with an admin (the person running it) and video screen sharing so that all participants can see each other. Other participants will appear in small screen thumbnails, underneath any participant who is currently speaking.
You can choose to broadcast and live stream your Hangout through Hangouts On Air – and Hangouts are automatically recorded and added to the YouTube account associated with the admin.
Hangouts are restricted to invited participants by default, if you don’t set them to “Public” sharing.You can also display and view a YouTube video within a Hangout. To do this:
• Open YouTube.com/live in your browser. You will see a stream of all currently live broadcasts
• In a different window, start your Hangout and invite your participants
• Once your Hangout is underway, go back to YouTube Live and select the video you want to share with your hangout
• Click on the “Share” link underneath the video. Copy the URL.
• Switch back to your Hangout. Open the video tab, enter the URL you copied and search for it.
• Once you locate it, click play.
You can join a Hangout without a webcam, though you may find that limiting. If you don’t have one, check with the Hangout admin to make sure participating is okay. Some admins don’t like a blank screen stuck in the middle of their hangout participants’ screen displays – especially if they are running a publicized, formal “show”.
Likewise, if you discover on joining the hangout that your webcam is not compatible (which seems to happen quite often) you may wish to ask if you should bow out.
Although bugs are still being ironed out of Google+ Hangouts and documentation can be confusing, the business and branding potential is enormous.
Best advice for Google+ Hangouts?
Start out simply with a small, closed group until you’ve got the hang of running one!
What You Need to Know about YouTube and Google+ integrations
Google+ Hangouts are integrated with your Google Calendar, which makes it easy never to miss a Hangout if you add it to your Calendar events – you’ll get a reminder.
If you enabled AutoShare when you posted your first video, know that you can change this at any time by visiting your Channel settings.
You will need to have a linked YouTube and Google+ account, to use AutoShare. You can keep your old YouTube name, but your accounts must by linked via the same Gmail address.
You can also monetize your YouTube account, and there is strong speculation that this will increase your Google+ SEO. Monetizing your
YouTube account will also allow you to upload videos over fifteen minutes in length. And once you have done this, you’ll be able to brand your Channel. This is a formal process rather than simply “good branding techniques”: You’ll need to send your YouTube username to your Google
Account Team and request to have your account converted to a brand channel in order to access all your Channel branding advantages.
You can add a Google+ annotation to your videos at any time by using the Google+ button as a graphic “Hot Spot” connected to your Profile URL, to encourage people directly to visit your Google+ profile.
There is so much more to all the possibilities of using video with Google+:
And if certain features are glitchy, currently in flux (or even simply not there any more) – relax! Google+ is changing, ironing these out – and everyone else is experiencing the same things you are. Take a deep breath, create a Hangout, jump in.
After all, you want to be the one who has mastered all the opportunities – while others are only just beginning to discover them!