Move over Carson Daly and "The Today Show". Meet the new social media talk shows: Google+ Hangouts and TwitterChats. Brands of all sizes can now seize the hour of gaining influence and publicity channeled through today's largest social media news networks.
Google+ Hangouts and TwitterChats serve up publicity opportunities whether you're a guest, host, or attendee. While TwitterChats are nothing new to social media aficionados with the first industry chat originating in 2008, #journchat.
Google+ Hangouts On Air are the newbie evolving since the Google+ debut in 2011 and embedding a strong force that ties in the exposure of YouTube and the powerhouse perks of the world's most used search engine.
Socially Redefining Publicity
Publicity is traditionally defined as the deliberate attempt to manage the public's perception of a subject and focuses on the act of attracting media attention and gaining visibility with the public.
From an online marketing perspective, publicity is one component of promotion and from a public relations perspective gaining publicity from the media, any media as long as it is relative to the business, is key. Say hello to our newfound publicity outlet: social media!
Old school publicity looks something like this:
- Event sponsorships.
- Press conferences.
- Hosting a tour of your business.
- Polls and surveys.
- Invent then present an award.
- Ribbon cutting.
All are still valid forms of publicity generators, but today we have new interactive and more organized opportunities popping up within the social media news streams. These new social PR venues such as TwitterChats and Google+ Hangouts allows brands of any size to gain that oh so coveted#FMA or first-mover advantage, the advantage gained by the initial ("first-moving") significant occupant of a market segment.
Social talk shows level the playing fields depending on a brand's agility to move fast and be daring. This new media segment opens up brands to be first in your industry, first to a topic, theme or segment to be a guest, host, or cover a special event and turn it into rich, fresh, and engaging content.
Morning Shows Go From Green Room to Orange Room
Traditional morning talk shows, notorious for lagging in social media prowess, are even turning the social corner. "The Today Show" welcomed Carson Daly, who officially joined the show as host of the brand new #OrangeRoom, a space that social connects the show and the audience.
The physical Orange Room space on the set segues into the social streams with the new hashtag #orangeroom, in essence creating a TwitterChat inside a historically traditional broadcast format. The move was received with a warm welcome as Daly was trending last week in New York.
SES Speaker Michelle Stinson-Ross, co-host of #SocialChat with Alan Knecht, took a deep dive into the steps involved in leveraging TwitterChats and Google+ Hangouts and for publicity at SES San Francisco.
What the #Hashtag?
#TwitterChats are interactive conversations at a specific time on Twitter. Similar to a traditional media talk show, there is a host, a guest, an audience of real-time attendees and a typically programmed format with a featured topic.
Twitter Chats happen in real-time with real-time issues, topics and connections; but for those that miss the rolling 140 character tweets, there are transcripts, TwitterChat's version of reruns.
Tweeting for Publicity, Gaining Influence
There are publicity benefits in participating in TwitterChats including:
- Exposure of your brand to a focused audience of influencers.
- Build relationships with influencers.
- Garner media attention by getting quoted by bloggers and covered by traditional media.
- Gain authority by seizing the opportunity to gain rank in expertise.
- Get invitations and opportunities, such as invitations to speak, or appear or write for other outlets.
- Get real-time feedback and gratification from media and influencers.
How to Find the Right Chats
If you're looking for TwitterChats, make sure you're looking in all the right places, such as:
- Discovering chats mentioned by those you follow.
- Looking for chats quoted in blogs and other media publications.
- Identifying chats curated by others.
- Optimizing and organizing the TwitterChat experience for hosts, guests and attendees using social platforms such as Twubs and TweetChat.
TwitterChats to make your social PR day:
- Mondays: #Journchat 8 p.m. ET; #SocialChat 9 p.m. ET
- Tuesdays: #PPCchat 12 p.m. ET; #SocialCafe 9 p.m. ET
- Wednesdays: #PinChat 9 p.m. ET
- Thursdays: #MyBlogGuest 11 a.m. ET; #SEOchat at 1 p.m. ET
- Fridays: #BusinessFuel 1 p.m. ET
Tweets of Wisdom: Understand thy Chat Environment
Stinson-Ross recommends to lurk and put yourself in listen-only mode before you leap into the stream and understand that questions are as welcome as comments, so use it as a learning tool.
TwitterChat Hosts Publicity Factors
Hosting a talk show may not be that much of a reach and the publicity factors stack up.
Hosts control the schedule, the topic, the official transcript and the perception of expertise and authority! Let's not forget the potential media opportunities for hosting a Twitter Chat, your chat can get publicity in online and offline publication.
For example #SocialChat received kudo mentions in media outlets such as #SocialChat Blog Mentions, Mashable, Social Media Today, Social Times and Simply Measured, Stinson-Ross noted.
Lights, Web Cam, Online Action! Google+ Hangouts On Air
"On Air" has a whole new meaning and isn't reserved for broadcast newsrooms any more. For the more extroverted and social video savvy brand reporters, Google+ makes it possible for anyone with a web cam, Google+ account and high speed Internet connections can turn any moment into an instant on-air collaboration or pseudo talk show.
Google+ is boasting 359 million active users making it the second largest social network in between the #1 Facebook and #3 Twitter according to unofficial reports via GlobalWebIndex and it is used by 30% of smartphone users between April–June 2013, making it the fourth most used app.
"The publicity opportunities one can uncover by using Google+ HOA in business are limited only by your imagination! You can invite any celebrity, journalist or blogger relevant to the subject to join your hangout, and you both get the Google SEO value of the video conversation produced," said Debbie Horovitch, Google Hangouts On Air Consultant, Social Sparkle & Shine.
Publicity Benefits of Google HOA
First let's take a step back. If you're sitting at your home office in your boxers or sweats, you might need a little primping. Hair! Makeup! Wardrobe!
Once you have the environment and basics under control, check out the publicity benefits:
- You choose the show topic that fits your brand best.
- Gain video to use over and over again.
- Promote exposure of your brand to a new audience.
- Relationships with influencers built on mutual benefit.
- Possible guest expert and speaking invitations.
Where do you start? Learn from the masters.
Eric Enge, CEO of Stone Consulting and Search Engine Watch contributor, hosts a Google+ Hangouts series appropriately named Masters of Google+ Series where you can hangout with some of the top influencers on Google+ and find out their secret sauce to Google domination.
"The reason I started doing a Hangout On Air (HOA) talk show is that building relationships and perceived authority is critical in any social network," Enge said. "The HOAs allow me to work directly with a number of influential people on Google+, and they in turn come to trust me and actively share my content on Google+.
"In addition, the people I have on the show help bring in the audience, and they help promote the show, and this helps me obtain new followers and grow my personal G+ network. And, as previously stated, the show helps build trust with the people who watch it," Enge said.
Find Hangouts at Google+ as well as submit your own. Reach more people by scheduling and submitting your Google+ Hangout in directories, forums and outlets like this one.
The Last Word
Today's talk show is changing, it's social and ripe with PR opportunities. You might not be joining your favorite talk show host on the couch next to the likes of Oprah, but your chance of getting publicity in the social streams might be greater.
Today's social media darlings, TwitterChats and Google Hangouts, make it easier to get in the limelight and create on-going social publicity in real-time.