Sue Sierra spent years in the radio business before venturing into the virtual world of the internet. Sue was intrigued with the idea of moving from radio to video as online video gained popularity.
For the past three years Sue has been producing Alex Mandossian's Marketing Online weekly hangouts after Alex found her Hangout “how to” videos on YouTube.
She is also the creator of Hangout Production Secrets, a training program she created with Alex Mandossian.
Ted: Welcome, everybody. It’s Ted Prodromou and this is episode seven of Social Selling TV. If you haven’t download the app yet, you can go to socialsellingtelevision.com and that’ll take you to iTunes. It’s only available for iOS devices at this time but hopefully soon on our Androids. Today, I want to welcome Sue Sierra. I met Sue, gosh, last year when I was doing Hangouts watching Alex Mandossian’s Hangouts. There was this little woman down in the corner and she’s like busily doing things like, “What is she doing down there?” Then, Alex introduced her as the producer of the show. I was like, “What a brilliant idea.”
I’ve gotten to know Sue over the last, probably eight, nine months and it’s just brilliant what she’s done because I’ve done hundreds of webinars and there’s just always something that seems like a glitch. Something happens, the cosmic forces or whatever, the internet gods, whatever. Sometimes, just weird things happen but Sue has figured out the best practices, really what can go wrong, how to prevent it, how to prepare for it, how to recover from it which is huge because we will have those hiccups. Let me bring Sue online here. Welcome, Sue.
Sue: Hello. Hi. Thanks for having me, Ted. Good to be here. Kind of fun being in the interviewee seat for a change.
Ted: That’s right. You’re always on the other side of that.
Sue: That’s right.
Ted: That’s cool. As I mentioned earlier, I’m just jealous of your clean room behind you.
Sue: I’ve noticed it’s a little dark. I got to tweak it a little here. It’s supposed to be purple but it’s like a dark purple right now. I’ll tweak as we go.
Ted: Tell me your background and how you ended up being a webinar producer. Why not TV producer?
Sue: Yeah, for sure. I’ve always actually been in broadcasting. I started when I was in high school when I was 14. I started hanging around at the local radio station in Vernon, BC which is actually where I live. Again, I’m back in my hometown which is crazy. All through high school, I hung around at the radio station and as soon as I graduated, they hired me and that was the beginning of my radio broadcasting career. I left and went to Vancouver, Canada for years. That’s where I was on air for most of my radio career and mostly playing music but always at a microphone, always in a radio station in some form or another.
About seven or eight years ago, I just started getting really entrusted in the internet and what was available beyond my one radio station and the ability to be able to reach people not just in my hometown anymore, not just locally in Vancouver but all over the world with the internet and to be able to create something on my own rather than working for somebody else at a radio station. I started dabbling in the internet and it was just a natural progression to start moving into doing video online. While I was still in radio, I was playing around online and then eventually, I ended up leaving radio just to pursue the internet so that I could do my own thing and work from home and have kids and be here for them. It’s been a pretty awesome, fun adventure ever since.
Ted: Isn’t it great working from home because you can be there for your kids?
Sue: Exactly, yeah. I just couldn’t imagine doing it any other way now.
Ted: I did the same thing years ago. I quit my job and started consulting. Drove the kids crazy because they come home from school for lunch because their school was really close and they’re thinking, “Bring a bunch of kids. We’ll have some fun,” and there’s dad [inaudible 00:03:53].
Sue: Always there.
Ted: One of the big questions I get is, I’ve been doing go-to meetings for years and then now, we have Hangouts, now we have Periscope, now we have Blab. What should we be using?
Sue: It’s endless, isn’t it? I think just always being on top of the latest technology is really important because it’s constantly changing. I talked about going from regular traditional radio to the internet and using video one at a time. YouTube wasn’t this big huge thing yet. In fact, I was doing webinars and I was using go-to webinar and that was the only one at the time but I was always seeking out different options because I thought wouldn’t it be cool to not only be able to do a webinar and be able to speak to people and show them cool stuff but to be on video too? I was using video with webinars back in the dinosaur ages of the internet when it was hardly even done. The technology just wasn’t there.
The one company I found was this really small company that were really trying to make a go of it but it was still really rough. Video, live streaming video was such a new thing then that it was far from being perfected but it’s still far from being perfected. Like you said, there’s still endless things that can go wrong and it’s just embracing all the different technology, trying it all out, finding out what is really the most comfortable for you because yeah, people are asking me now all the time, “Should I really be learning how to use Google Hangouts or should I be focusing on Blab or Periscope?” I say try them all because there’s going to be one that works the best for what you want to use it for and there’s going to be one that is more comfortable for you. Some people have just dived right into Periscope and have embraced it and love it.
For me, I’ve been using Hangouts since Hangout started and it, to me, was the ultimate solution because of years of trying to get video live online while doing a presentation and just having to use a bit of this and a bit of that to piece something together. It’s like Hangouts had it all. Then, to top it off, there’s unlimited viewers which was unheard of. You’ve got go-to webinar. You could have a hundred people and again, the video aspect but then not only just a video but up to 10 videos on Google Hangouts. Then, it’s free. We were paying hundreds of dollars a month to use go-to webinar all these years. To me, Hangouts was just, it was the solution for everything that I had wanted to use video for online and just had to piece together up until that point. I still think Hangouts rock for certain scenarios, for this kind of thing. It’s perfect. Blab is just a, it’s a more informal. It’s just a different layout. It’s just a little bit different but it’s great too.
Ted: Like Brady Bunch.
Sue: Yeah, exactly, like a small version of the Brady Bunch. It’s great for … There, that’s better. It’s great for what it is but for me, it doesn’t replace Hangouts. One doesn’t replace another. They all have really great uses. It just really depends on what you want to use them for.
Ted: People ask me what social media platform should I focus on, Twitter or Facebook or LinkedIn or whatever. Fill in the blanks, Snapchat’s the hot one now. I say you have a different audience. You’ll find people that want your products and services on all those channels but you need to engage them differently.
Sue: That’s right.
Ted: Periscope, people are doing Periscopes like crazy. What is Periscope for people that don’t know what Periscope is?
Sue: Periscope is a live streaming platform that is mostly about your phone so it’s on iPhone and Android. You can watch online but it’s not really like on your computer but it’s not really built for that. It’s built for live streaming, quick, low-quality really, video on the go. When I say low-quality, I don’t mean that in a bad way at all. I think it’s cool like we don’t have to have these big elaborate setups to be able to do video on the go. You bring your phone. You download the Periscope app. You hit start broadcast and boom, you’re on or you hit record and you’re on. Start broadcast is on Hangouts but it’s instant.
Then, it’s got the social aspect too which is also different from Hangouts. Google Hangouts doesn’t have nearly the social aspect built into it like Periscope and Blab which are both, they’re both in with Twitter. You’ve instantly got that social aspect. I love Periscope. I was doing a scope a day for a while but it’s like with any of this technology, you go in, you go out. Like you said, I get the same thing too. Should I Facebook? Should I LinkedIn? Should I Twitter? I say do what’s the most fun for you. I love Facebook. Facebook isn’t work for me. Facebook is just a natural fun place to hang out that I can build an audience and it’s effortless but some people feel that way about Instagram. Whatever you’re good at and you enjoy doing, definitely focus on that one.
Ted: People respond on Twitter. Some people love Twitter. They sit there all day watching Twitter. I wrote a book about Twitter and I just never got totally hooked on it like I have done on Facebook and LinkedIn.
Sue: When Twitter first came out, I was all over it. I had 45,000 followers. I was really big into Twitter when it first came out and now, I’m lost like I don’t even really get it anymore but it definitely … Yeah, it’s one of those things, I loved it then. Again, it’s the phases. Who knows, maybe I’ll get into Snapchat.
Ted: Bright and shiny objects.
Ted: What’s next? Let’s go through Google Hangouts. Maybe we can just walk through like what do you have to be aware of when you’re setting up a Hangout? We use WebinarJam, both of us. What’s WebinarJam?
Sue: WebinarJam is a software that was created by Mike Filsaime and Andy Jenkins. It was really to make Google Hangouts what it needs to be to be able to use it to market with. Google Hangouts, like I said, it’s free and that’s great so everybody has access to it but there aren’t tools for really building your business. For using Google Hangouts, there's not really a whole lot you can do. If you want to build a list, it’s not that easy to do as Google Hangouts. If you want to charge people to watch your presentation, it’s not really set up to do that just directly through Google Hangouts.
WebinarJam is software that they built almost like imagine it encases Hangout. Everything that you need, all wrapped up. You can set it up so people can actually opt-in. Instead of just having sending somebody to a page to watch your Hangout, they have to opt-in to watch it through WebinarJam. You can get instant replays which is awesome. All of the notifications are all automated so when people sign up, they get an e-mail right away, they get reminders. You don’t have to deal with any of that. It’s all automated. Then, the follow-up e-mail afterwards I think is awesome because you get an e-mail sent out that sends you to the replay right away.
Then, there's lots of other marketing tools that you can use too. You can do polls and surveys. You can have offers like we can have a buy now button show up right now if we wanted to. Just lots of really great marketing tools that take Google Hangouts from this awesome platform for broadcasting to then becoming also an awesome platform for marketing.
Ted: Google Hangouts, can you schedule those in advanced now? When it first came out, you have to create the link as you're starting to Hangout. Then, you’ve got to e-mail your list.
Sue: There's a way around that. You can schedule a Hangout On Air ahead of time but the whole system is clunky. I'm the first to say that. It takes some practice. As far as the technology goes, it’s clunky but once you learn it, it isn’t all that bad. There are ways to set it up ahead of time. One of the tips that I have, I probably got it written down here somewhere. I have a bunch of little cheat sheet cards all over the place here. Here it is. I like to give people this link. If you want to start a Hangout On Air rather than going to your Google+ account and clicking around and trying to find out where to actually go, just go to plus.google.com/hangouts/onair just like this card.
That to me, that’s really simplifies things because it seems like the hardest thing for people to do is figure out where to start the Hangout from. If you go there, if you go right to that link and you click create a Hangout On Air, then you're good to go. You don’t have to click all over the place. That’s my big tip.
Ted: To me, you can have that … Google has got some of the best developers in the world but they can't seem to make it easy to [inaudible 00:13:46].
Sue: It’s been a great thing for me because as you know, just continuing on the story a little bit and how it intertwined and met up with Alex Mandossian is when I first started using Hangouts, I just saw a real need for people having a real hard time running Hangouts and starting them. It’s still happening. That was late 2012 I believe. Now, three years later, I'm still getting the same questions. People are still having a hard time with the technology. What I did right away is I started jumping on doing tutorial videos on YouTube how to use Google Hangouts, how to set up a Google Hangout, how to screen share. I've had hundreds of thousands of views on these videos. It’s talking about tapping into something that there's a need for and the need is how to use this technology. I just kept doing videos. That’s actually how I met Alex, is he found my videos on YouTube which is funny.
Ted: [Inaudible 00:14:52].
Sue: I’d heard his name because he's a marketing legend online and has been for years. He left a comment on one of my videos asking if I would like to come on one of his Hangouts. Then, we just started chatting and he said, “You know, I'm looking for somebody to help me with my Hangouts.” I'm like, “Cool. I can do Hangouts. What do you need?”
Sue: It was a really cool way of meeting and just sort of a real match because he wanted a producer. He wanted to be able to show up and hit start broadcast and hit stop broadcast at the end and be done with it.
Ted: That huge, what we just had.
Sue: This is the fun part, getting to the interview and doing the show together like what you're doing with me now. This is great but it’s like all the stuff leading up to it, all the set up that’s involved and making sure all the technology works and making sure the guest has the right link, it was just such a natural partnership when we met. Soon after, I became his, what he calls, his production manager. Like you said, I'm that little camera down below. I got a couple of Macs going on. I'm running things behind the scenes so he doesn’t have to. It’s quite luxurious for him to have that, to be able to have a full-time web TV producer. Whether he's doing Hangouts or Blab or whatever, I can take care of all the stuff that isn’t so fun for him. For me, it is fun. I love the technology. I love using it. I'm able to do what I enjoy. For him, it works great.
Ted: Having done hundreds of webinars myself, it’s such a skill. It’s like you're trying to focus on presenting a really good content and then there's people over here chatting saying they're having problems or they're asking questions, then there's something happening over here or something freezes, to have somebody handling behind the scenes while you stay focused on your presentation is invaluable.
Sue: Agreed. It was a cool thing for me to be able to … Who’s ever heard of a Hangouts producer or a web TV producer? It’s almost like a position that we created together, Alex and I. Where it’s taking me now is to a place that is actually even more fun for me. That is I now I get to teach people how to do it. I do a course that teaches people how to be a web TV producer because we came to this realization, there's a lot of other people like Alex out there that want to do a show but don’t want to have to deal with all the stuff on the side. Really, you can't give your best show, you can't do the best content creation live while you're trying to handle everything else. It’s just obviously, you're going to do a better job if you’ve got somebody handling that for you.
We just saw a real market for other producers. It was an opportunity for people who are trying to find their place online and trying to do some different things that generate income. Learn how to produce the show and offer it up to somebody else. We actually …
Ted: Radio shows don’t happen, right? TV shows don’t happen. There's people behind the scenes running the show.
Ted: This is perfect. Let’s go back. Before this event went live, what are the steps people have to do to get set up their event, promote it, and then merge it and then afterward, there's the follow-up.
Sue: I broke it down. When I did my course, I broke it down into … There's promotion. There is syndication. There's repurposing. There's all these stuff to do with your content before it happens. Then, you’ve got your live show. Then after it happens, you now have this great content, what do you do with that? There's quite a few steps involved. Something like this, you do a weekly show where you're interviewing people. Number one is you need an editorial calendar. You’ve got to be organized from the get go. You got to have everything laid out. We book guests at least a couple of months out for Alex. He does a weekly show every Friday. That’s all laid out well in advanced. We know who’s coming up. The next thing that we do, I’ll take you through the process of what we do for Alex just because I do it so much. It’s there.
Ted: That’s just great because I'm booking people in the May already. I have my assistant booking them.
Sue: That’s the beginning. If you don’t have … If you're doing an interview style show and you don’t have people lined up, then you're just constantly trying to get on top of that, book a bunch of people out as far as you can and stay with that. Always stay on top of that. Then, you’ve got to let people know about your events. We work on a … What we do is for each guest, we get them to come up with the title and three bullets. We just have that real format down. We need a title and three speaking points. Then, we create a banner for that. We do that for Google+ so that we can create an event on Google+ because hey, we’re using Google, we might as well have the event there.
There's so many different places that you can have your event. I like to tell people, “Start with one. Don’t go for syndication, all over the internet, live everywhere you can possibly be at once until you’ve got one down.” I'm going to tell you all these different things. Don’t feel like you have to do all of them at once. You just want to tackle one at a time.
Ted: That’s really a good advice right there. Get really good at one thing and then replicate it.
Ted: Instead of trying to do it all at once and put it everywhere …
Sue: Then it’s just a big mess. You don’t really have anything anywhere because it’s just you're trying to take on too much. Once we have the banner, then we create an event in Google+. We create an event in Facebook. That’s the pre-promotion. This is stuff that you can do ahead of time before your show goes live. We send out weekly e-mails to Alex’s list every week. We’re sending people to the registration page through WebinarJam so that we can capture those e-mail addresses. We’re promoting Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, all the usual suspects. We’re telling people about it in all those avenues ahead of time.
Then, when we’re live, and this is the tricky one, what I'm going to talk about is syndication which means syndication is when you are broadcasting in one format, we’re talking Google Hangouts, live in numerous places at the same time. Not to be confused with, say, like repurposing, where you can have maybe you show Google Hangout and then you repurpose it and show it on Blab so you're showing it as a Blab. We’re talking strictly live in numerous places at once. That would be syndication. We do that. We do it live on Google+, LinkedIn, thanks to Ted because he showed us how we could do that so every one of our live shows is now live on LinkedIn at the same time. Also, on Alex’s website, because you get an embed code, you can put it anywhere. You take the embed code and you can have it right on your own website which obviously makes sense to use your own real estate.
We also use an app on Facebook, the 22Social app, so that we can also syndicate live on Facebook. We’re live in about six different places at once while the Hangout is live. Again, that’s something like you don’t want to try to pull that off on your first Hangout. We pulled that off after months of tweaking and fine tuning and okay, now we can add in LinkedIn. Now, it’s just a well-oiled machine. Again, but Alex doesn’t touch any of that. He's not involved in any of that at all. That’s all me behind the scenes.
Ted: Because he's going to be focusing on doing a good presentation.
Sue: Exactly. He's getting talking at the guest, talking about what they're going to talk about, he's getting … I learned this from Alex. We do these little cards. This is …
Ted: They're awesome.
Sue: A little list of what you need for your Hangouts or any web TV show, really. Because I've just been doing my course, I've got them everywhere. I’ve got little tips everywhere.
Ted: Can I ask you a quick question about the e-mails?
Ted: You said you send out e-mails before. How many e-mails do you send to promote a weekly event and how often? Three e-mails over a few days?
Sue: Well, we have the automated e-mails that go through WebinarJam. If anybody signs up through WebinarJam, those are just the automated, like don’t forget, your webinar is coming up at this time and here's the link. We have a weekly e-mail that goes out every Friday morning. It’s the same e-mail, just with the different banner and the different bullet points and title. The guest is different and then the title and the bullets are different but other than that, everything stays the same. That goes out …
Sue: What's that? It’s a template, yeah. Exactly. That goes out every Friday morning, early in the mornings. The show is at noon so that goes out early Friday morning. Then, Alex usually writes another one specific to that topic I guess. He's a copywriter. He just pumps out these e-mails like it’s nothing. I like the template. The template is something that I would continue to use but he actually whip up something new for each guest. Not everybody is going to do that that quickly. It’s still a great idea. He always writes a really good e-mail. That one goes out early in the week and then it goes out again to all of the unopened. Then, we got the Friday. I guess three e-mails to his whole list throughout the week leading up to that Friday Hangout. That’s every week consistently. Week after week.
Ted: Then, when it’s all done, actually, with Alex, he does the green room beforehand now.
Sue: That’s right. That’s actually a very cool tip, what he does. Again, we just progressed into this. It became like it’s just sort of over the years of him doing Hangouts. It’s just got to this point. I think it’s really smart because afterwards, so you got the syndication which happens live and then afterwards, you have repurposing. That means you’ve got your contents, you’ve got your video, and especially with Hangouts, you instantly have a video on YouTube, one of the other amazing features of Google Hangouts. You don’t have to wait a week to get a replay like the old days. You got it now.
Then, repurposing means, okay, so you’ve got that video and now you can strip out the audio and that can become a podcast. We actually get ours, every Hangout, we get transcribed. That goes off to a company we used to call rev.com.
Sue: They're great. Then, but we take it a step further so that once it’s transcribed, then it comes back to me and I enhance it. I take it and I chunk it down into bite-sized little pieces of information and make sure that … They are great. Rev is a really great service for transcribing, but it can always look better. We make it really like high-quality PDF. Now, we’ve got this 20-page PDF from every Hangout that is another piece of really awesome content in the written form.
Ted: It’s an eBook in itself.
Sue: Exactly, for everyone. I got off-track there. Your question to me was …
Ted: The green rooms.
Sue: The green room, thank you, because I was going to get back to that. The way we work it is he does an hour-long Hangouts. It’s from noon to one on Fridays, but really, the content with that guest is, say, maybe 30 minutes or 40 minutes. What he does is he calls it a green room before and after. The Hangout starts and it’s just really casual. It’s just him chatting at the guest. People are coming in. Another thing I do for him is I do engagement during the Hangout. I welcome people and they let us know where they're watching from. He recognizes them and gives them a little shout-out. Excuse me.
Then, we do that and he always says, “You know, this is the green room so feel free to invite people.” He always gives a bit of good content then too. It’s a way to get as many viewers as you can into the room ready to go. Then, he does a 3-2-1 countdown. Then, he starts his content which goes for, say, 30 minutes. It’s pure content. He's not taking any questions. He's not acknowledging anybody that’s watching. It’s all about creating that content. Then, when he gets to the end of it, then he closes, thanks for watching, I'm Alex, but the Hangout is not really over because everybody that’s there watching is now there for the green room after.
He’ll invite people in and you can ask questions, but then you’ve got that then he sends it off to his video editor and he's got that 30-minute chunk of content that can now be repurposed in a way where it’s pure and solid content. It’s not just like, “Oh, Sammy is watching in San Diego. Hi, Sammy,” which is great. It’s great to acknowledge people. It’s awesome because people feel they're a part of it. Then, he just has that one content portion. It just works awesome. Now, we’re repurposing the true real meat of it all then see the …
Ted: The show within a show, he calls it.
Sue: He does and it’s smart. It’s really smart.
Ted: I think don’t gloss over that engagement at the beginning because when that attracts, when I do that, it engages people. They flip to your screen actually because if you go to meeting, you can see who’s not on the screen watching.
Sue: That’s right.
Ted: You can see probably sometimes three quarters of people aren’t actually watching. They haven't in the background. When you engage people and say, “Hey, Ted from San Anselmo.” You're like, “Wow, he mentioned me.”
Sue: People hear their name and they perk up. It makes people feel good.
Ted: Really it gets people to pay attention throughout the whole webinar. At the end, when you invites people in, you can go live on there. That’s like, “Oh, wow. I was on Alex’s show.”
Sue: I know. He's really going to figure it out. Again, he’s been doing Hangouts since Hangout started but then the years of teleseminars and all different kinds of webinars. The Hangouts is just to be a call. That’s all the same kind of stuff.
Ted: Because we all have 50 windows open on our computer and then e-mails popping over here, our phones have text messages. We got to keep people focused on that Hangout.
Sue: That’s right.
Ted: That’s a great way to do it. What's next?
Sue: Well …
Ted: You start sending it out to your e-mail list. It’s on YouTube.
Sue: Afterwards of the whole like the repurposing, the cool thing is it never needs to end. Ted, I know you talk a lot about that repurposing content and just creating. Just because we’re creating this content today, nothing that we’re saying is dated. This, if you're watching this live or if you're watching it a week from now or if you're watching it a year from now, it’s still going to be valid information. Once the Hangout is over, we actually like to say if you're going to focus either on syndication during a live event and having it live all over the place or you're going to focus on repurposing and what to do with the content afterwards, start with the repurposing because there's less room for error for one thing because you're not live, like you’ve just got the time to create it and tweak it and edit it if you want to and actually get it out there.
I talked about we have the video on YouTube, then you can strip the audio and create a podcast with I, I get that transcription done and now you've got, like you said, great eBooks like a great giveaway. Download this free eBook on how you use Google Hangouts. Then, you can keep dispersing out content all over the place. Again, throw it out on all your social media, whatever ones that you focused on, whether it’s Twitter or Instagram or LinkedIn or whatever, get it all out there and get it out tomorrow and get it out next week and again in a month. It’s still good current content. You can just keep using it.
Ted: People love a little checklist too like at the end of this where you had a checklist of 10 things to do for your successful Google Hangout. People love to download that stuff.
Sue: Absolutely. We should have got that together. I'm sure I got that below.
Ted: That’s so easy to create. I'm sure you have the big checklist. Huge checklist.
Sue: That’s right. Never think that just because maybe you don’t even have a lot of people on your live Hangout, you're creating something that’s going to just cheap working like on YouTube, the prime example is the Hangout tutorial videos that I've done. The one that gets the most hits is from 2014. I'm telling you, I've got to update this because it’s a year and a half old now. Of course, Google has moved everything so it’s a little bit outdated. That content was created, like I said, a year and a half ago. There's still people watching it every day. I'm still getting 10,000 views a month on that one video.
Ted: Holy cow.
Sue: Never think and purposely create content that isn’t dated so you don’t have to … When you're doing a show, you don’t have to say, “Oh, today is Tuesday, 1:00 pacific time.” It’s not necessary because people can watch it and it’s not …
Ted: That’s a great time.
Sue: That’s an old radio thing too. If we’re prerecording bits, you would never say, “Oh, it’s such a beautiful day today.” You don’t say that when you're creating content that you want to last a long time. Things like blogpost and videos on YouTube, people can find those years later and they can still be good valuable content.
Ted: I create lots of LinkedIn training videos just like that. Then, I’ll do searches on YouTube and it comes up, it’s videos from five years ago that are number one. People are still viewing it. It’s like, “Hey, very different today than just the way I know it.” That’s huge.
Sue: Title, keyword, description, all that stuff.
Ted: If you want to create, get a lot of people interested in your Hangouts, do you have a technique you use for the … Alex probably comes out with the titles but …
Sue: He's the master of the copywriting. I leave that to him. Actually, I can send you to a website, it’s marketingonline.com/eventbanners. That’s a good little site to share with people because it will really give you some idea of how to … You’ll see the format that Alex uses. It’s just, if you click on each one of those banners, it will show you a bigger version of the banner but it just shows you the format that we use for creating those every week. That doesn’t change. It’s the title and the three bullets. Just as a way to really highlight the content that you're going to be delivering, catchy title, he likes to use numbers like the five biggest mistakes to avoid and the four things that you're going to learn and the three this. It’s a good little source.
Ted: That’s a proven copywriting technique that works for hundred years.
Sue: Whatever, right? Again, it’s like plug and play. That’s our template. Topic and three bullets.
Ted: Using the same banner creates your brand so people get used to seeing that brand.
Ted: They're familiar with it. What's this all banner down below you? How do people turn that on?
Sue: That is the lower third. Excellent question. It’s something everybody wants to know about. It’s an app right within Google Hangouts. When you're actually on a Google Hangout, people get confused about this too so just to clarify, there's a couple of different ways to participate in a Google Hangout. You can watch as a viewer which is probably what you're doing right now. You're just watching the Hangout. That means you're not inside the Hangout. You don’t have access to what's going on inside and you're not going to see all the different apps and that kind of thing.
The other option is to be inside the Hangout like Ted and I are. Often, you’ll see a whole slew of people down below with all the little cameras down below because you can have up to 10 cameras on at the same time. That’s being inside the Hangout versus watching the Hangout. When you're inside, you have access to a bunch of different apps. One of them creates that lower third. It’s an app called Hangout Toolbox. It’s a free app. If you don’t have it, you can quickly install the plugin. It’s great because, again, it’s the branding, right? You can put your name and your URL so people can know where to find you. Then, it’s always there. When you have the replay as well, Ted never needs to worry about people knowing who is interviewing because their names is right there. It’s like a TV show, a news TV show where you see the names on the bottom.
Ted: It’s accurate. When I look at my own and yours.
Sue: That’s right. Just to throw you off. There is a little button you can hit that will switch it for you if you don’t like seeing your own backwards.
Ted: At first, I’ll flipped it around because it is backwards. It was backwards.
Sue: Only to you. It’s only backwards to you.
Ted: I've seen some people with actually a banner down there, a custom banner. How do you do that?
Sue: That’s something I've got some of those as well for Alex. I have branded for his company. I've got a lower third. That’s something, if you know how to do graphics, then, it’s pretty easy. You can create your own. We get ours done through Fiverr, so five bucks to get a banner, a customized banner. Let’s see. I guess I can … I’ll show you.
Ted: Talked to you about Fiverr and just asked … There you go.
Sue: There's an example. It was that easy to get it up. When you go, it’s within the Hangout Toolbox app as well. What I had before and what Ted’s got set up is just what defaults from Google like everybody gets that lower third and it grabs your profile picture from Google+. You can just create that really quickly, or a custom one done and this looks pretty cool. It’s got the branding and everything. If you go to Fiverr and just search for G+ or Google+ lower third, that’s what it called, and there will be a bunch of people who know how to do that.
Also, if you just Google it, you’ll be able to get the measurements. I don’t create my own graphics. It’s just not my thing. A lot of people love to. As long as you’ve got the right dimensions, then you can just create your own and you upload it and you can save it within your Hangout Toolbox app and then it’s just always there ready to go.
Ted: It’s a scale. It’s hard to do graphics if you're not that inclined. It’s not for you.
Sue: I would say it’s either your thing or it’s not.
Ted: If it’s not for me. I'm thinking, “Oh, God.”
Sue: I know.
Ted: It’s so ugly.
Sue: Much smarter to put somebody to do it. It’s one of those things too.
Ted: To get to this app some things, you just put your mouse over left side of the screen while you're in a Hangout and this window pops up.
Sue: That’s right. It’s like a sidebar comes up and gives you chat. The main ones that I use are chat and screen share and then Hangout Toolbox. Another cool one is called Cameraman which you only have as the presenter. Are you using that app, Ted? Do you use that?
Ted: It’s there but I never used it.
Sue: What that does is like so right now, while you're watching, you can see me on the big screen because I'm talking. Then, you can see Ted down below. When he talks, he’s up top and I'm down below. Say we had six other people in here. You would see all those cameras as well. Depending on the style of show that you're doing, you don’t necessarily need to see all those cameras down below. Cameraman, the Cameraman app, when you turn that on, that allows you to show only the person speaking and not any of the cameras down below. That’s what Alex uses because it’ll be Alex and his guest and me and you don’t really need to see me down there the whole time. It’s like tinkering away at my keyboard.
He’ll just have himself on when he's talking and then he switches. It’s like a switcher like a TV studio where you're switching from one camera to the other. You're only seeing the camera that you’ve selected to see instead of all those cameras down below.
Ted: Then, you can add apps or three little dots here. I could say add apps and …
Sue: Then, there's a little silly ones you can put like crowns on your head and little like …
Ted: A group of ducks.
Sue: Ducks and stuff, emojis and things [crosstalk 00:41:35].
Ted: I like the new emojis on Facebook today.
Sue: Those are fun, aren’t they? It’s the talk of Facebook. There you go. Now, we've created a wee bit of content that if you hear this in two years …
Ted: There you go.
Sue: … they will be, “What? The emojis on Facebook doesn’t been around forever.”
Sue: That’s what I mean by dating it, not that that’s a big deal but just for anybody watching, it’s that kind of stuff where now, we’ve suddenly made it current.
Ted: Then, we have … What's this other one here? There's the showcase. What's a showcase?
Sue: The showcase, that is … I can't even remember what that one is for.
Ted: It’s disabled.
Sue: It is. I'm trying to … I never use that one. I'm not sure.
Ted: I've got a bunch of them over here. I always use the WebinarJam app.
Sue: Yes, which is great too. That’s another thing with WebinarJam. You get the WebinarJam app creates a chat within the Hangout too that people watching can use to chat on as well.
Ted: WebinarJam is an overlay to Google and just makes it a much more pleasant experience.
Sue: Exactly. It just gives you way more features especially if you're just using Hangouts just for fun and to chat with friends and you don’t really need WebinarJam but if you want to make money off your Hangouts, then, that’s a no brainer. That just makes it totally doable.
Ted: If you want to do a PowerPoint presentation, you can share your PowerPoint and people see that. Then, there's also videos. You could upload a video into WebinarJam and then play a separate video right now for people.
Sue: Yes. Exactly.
Ted: How do you do, say, I'm going to go on vacation next week and I have a prerecorded one, how would I play that?
Sue: There's a couple of ways. For Alex, he gets me to do it.
Ted: The manual process.
Sue: If you don’t have a producer, WebinarJam does allow you to do that with their new thing called EverWebinar which creates automatic webinars so you could … We did this actually just because Christmas Day and New Year’s Day both fell on Fridays and Alex thought that it would be cool if we both had the day off. We just used EverWebinar. It was all set up ahead of time. Then, same time as always, noon pacific time Friday, our show still went live but it had all been prerecorded and set up ahead of time.
Typically, we don’t typically do that because what we do is we like to make it a little bit more live than say EverWebinar is completely simulated live whereas if I can still be here but Alex can't, he’ll prerecord the interview, I play it back as a video through WebinarJam, but then I'm still there live chatting with people so I'm still, you know, welcome to the Hangout, let us know your name and where you're hanging out from. People say hi. I welcome them. We still have that feeling of being live but actually it had been recorded earlier in the week. That’s just the way to keep it a little bit more live.
Ted: You're engaging people to chat.
Ted: People ask questions and they don’t get an answer. It’s like, “Huh, what's going on here?”
Sue: Yeah. You can feel that. We certainly don’t try to hide it if somebody says, “Is this prerecorded?” Then, we say, “Yeah,” but we don’t make a big announcement because it really the experience is the same. It’s still Alex doing an interview and people still able to say who they are and where they're watching from and still feel like they're part of it.
Ted: EverWebinar, it seem it can disable chat so people couldn’t start asking questions.
Sue: That’s right. Yes, exactly.
Ted: It don’t get embarrassing, non-responsive or the canned response.
Ted: Okay, back to you shortly.
Sue: That’s right.
Ted: What else can you share? What are some … One thing I noticed in Google Hangouts, sometimes, everything just freezes.
Sue: I would say that if you're going to use technology like this and you're trying to broadcast live to all of anywhere in the world and you’ve got people watching from numerous locations all over the world, that you just got to know that it isn’t perfect technology and it’s not seamless and there are going to be issues. Sometimes, you're going to go, poof, and disappear. The sooner that you can just realize that that’s just the way it is, that it’s not a perfect medium, I think we have so far to go still with this live streaming. I think 10 years from now, we’ll be looking back at the old days of the Hangouts and how old and rickety and low-tech they were. It’s what we have now. It’s where technology has it’s the point that it’s brought us to right now. It’s all we got. It’s amazing what we can do with it. You just got to be okay with knowing that it probably isn’t going to be perfect.
One thing I can tell you that when you're inside a Hangout, you’ve got a link at the top of the browser window. It’s a really long, like it’s plus.google.com/hangouts and then like 30 letters. It’s very long. You'd never remember this link. If you copy that link and if you do get booted out of your own Hangout and you use that link, that’ll get you right back into your Hangout again and you can do it really quickly. If you just embrace the technology and the lack of its perfectness and just know that you can always come back and the show will go on …
Ted: If people will get kicked off, they’ll come back on, they’ll just disappear for a while.
Sue: It’s good … What I would do like if Alex … I'm always in his Hangout twice. From my main computer and then I'm in from another computer, then, so if he gets booted out, I'm still in there. I'm holding down the fort for two places if I got booted. Even if you don’t have a producer and you were doing it yourself, I would still recommend logging in from another computer as yourself even. You can do it even from the same account. I have different accounts that I use. Then, you're keeping it open so that if you did get booted out, that you would be saving it from your other computer.
Ted: That does happen. The refresh button will get you back in quickly sometimes.
Sue: Sometimes, but, sometimes. Again …
Ted: All technologies have this. It’s not just Hangouts.
Sue: Of course.
Ted: They've got meaningless issues. They all have hiccups.
Sue: Absolutely. I see people getting frustrated. I laugh because it’s just the way it is. You can drive yourself crazy getting frustrated at technology but if you just know that it’s not going to be perfect but it can be really, it can still be really tight and good once you get the hang of it. You just got to get better at dealing with the issues as they come up.
Ted: One thing Alex does really well when there are hiccups, he acknowledges it right away. Hey, this technology is not perfect. Things are going to happen. It’s how you recover that matters.
Sue: Yes, exactly. One of the things that I learned, it was so important and taught my students because I just finished this five-week program on how to be a web TV producer, is the ability as a producer more than anything. If you're producing for somebody else and you're getting freaked out about the technology, that is … Your job as the producer, if somebody is paying you to be their producer or you're an intern, whatever, but you’ve taken on this commitment of producing for them, your job is to stay cool as a cucumber. You don’t show that the technology is stressing you out ever to the person that you're working for.
I realized as I was telling everybody this, how important this is and how much and why I believe that things have gone so well for me with Alex is he hasn’t see me sweat. If things are exploding, I'm still smiling and I'm dealing with it because my job is to make things good for him. It’s to make him comfortable. The last thing he needs to worry about is being worried that I'm uncomfortable or that I'm stressing about something.
Ted: He's the star of the show and your job is to make him very comfortable.
Sue: That’s right …
Ted: That’s a great advice.
Sue: … and so important. That’s the role of a producer, I believe. That’s number one, you’ve got to deal with those situations. I just know from all the different things that I’ve tried and done online that it’s never [inaudible 00:51:16] like poof, you work towards something for months and months, it’s big launch, and then, poof, the server crashes. It’s like, “Okay, well, let’s pick up the pieces and get started.”
Ted: That’s why you have two computers. Now, they should be logged in twice. You know what's happened over time from experience.
Sue: Definitely. Be ready for anything and don’t freak out when it happens. Just deal with it.
Ted: I used to fix computers and computer networks. They would go down and I’d come on and fixed them and people are totally freaked out. I’d come in, just calm and, okay … I know what's wrong.
Ted: This has been great. If anybody have any questions, you can type them in the chat and Sue will be gladly answer them. This has evolved so much over the last couple of years. The other day, Alex was doing some live event and his Comcast was down. His internet was down at home. He went to his office, it was still down. What happened to that? Maybe share.
Sue: I'm trying to think how we got …
Ted: [Crosstalk 00:52:21].
Sue: … back because we’ve had some … We’ve had some pretty crazy things happened. I would say that I think everything has happened for us as far as technology goes. I don’t even remember … I think he eventually got back on. It all worked out.
Ted: I jumped on right. I see he gotten back on. He's saying, “Oh yeah, I drove up to my office. I drove [crosstalk 00:52:46],” but he were on the show and he also had Steve on the show. The show was continuing.
Sue: That’s right. We just kept going. It definitely helps to have somebody else there helping you out if you can. It makes things easier.
Ted: He just told me a story yesterday. He was interviewing somebody on Hangout just like this. His computer, his Windows 10 or something, he installed Windows 10 in the middle of the webinar, rebooted his computer and he couldn’t get back on and the show ended.
Sue: Right. His own show.
Ted: Turn off your computer updates.
Sue: There's definitely things that you can be prepared for. I tell people to shut down everything because if you're hosting the Hangout, then you're using up, you want to have the best possible bandwidth that you can, a wired connection, if it all possible, I'm wired here in my office. Ninety percent of the time, when I do Hangouts, I'm wired. That’s something that you can prepare for. The second computer, even if you're not doing anything from that one really accept that you're signed into the Hangout, I think that’s a really great one to be prepared.
Ted: Make sure to mute that second computer too because it can get feedback.
Sue: Yeah. You get some crazy sounds if you have the … If you got the mic on and the volume up over there, a bad idea. That’s right. All those things, you’ll just going to learn as you go. One of the things I would say one of the most common mistakes that people make when they're doing Hangouts in the beginning is forgetting to hit start broadcast. It’s such a simple little one but when you first start to Hangout, so you’ve set it up and you’ve got your guest in, you're in and you're ready to begin, you don’t go live for everybody to watch until you hit the start broadcast button. The other thing that that start broadcast button does is it actually is creating your recording on YouTube. It’s everything.
If you got your guest and you go right into the content, you're talking for half an hour and then you realized you haven't hit start broadcast, there's nothing. There was nothing live and there's no recordings. That’s a big one. Always hit the start broadcast button.
Ted: I can't tell you how many times I go to meeting, I've done an incredible webinar that I forgot to hit start record.
Sue: It’s so frustrating, right?
Ted: Yup. Great. Anything else? We could wrap this up.
Sue: I would say have fun with it. I am constantly amazed that we have this technology. Who didn’t watch The Jetsons and things like, “Oh, wouldn’t that be amazing someday if we get actually like speak to each other on video?” We’re there. It didn’t take very long. It’s like embracing the technology, all of it. Check out Blab. Like I said, check them all out. Find out which ones work the best for you and your audience and the ones that you feel the most comfortable using. Then, just be really patient with it and just know that it does work. I can't tell you how many people tell me that Hangouts don’t work and they always have problems. We haven't had any. We've done a whole … We’re just wrapping up. We had no issues.
Ted: You just jinxed us.
Sue: Sorry. It’s still pretty good up until this point if all goes to hell now.
Ted: Practice. That’s another thing.
Ted: [Inaudible 00:56:27] a hundred people and you’ve never done a Hangout before. Practice with people.
Sue: Yes, absolutely.
Sue: It’s free. It’s fun. It’s so fun. I just think to be able to connect with people in this way is just such a really cool thing. Embrace it and learn it and practice. Just keep practicing. To me, doing Hangouts is the easiest thing in the world but it sure wasn’t the first 20, 30 times.
Sue: Still, all kinds of weird things that would go on. Now, it’s just got to the point where it’s easy but because I use it all the time. I’ve used it hundreds of times.
Ted: Check out WebinarJam if you're going to use Hangouts. It’s very, very afford … 297 bucks [crosstalk 00:57:16] something really good.
Sue: Absolutely worth it. If you want to make money from your Hangouts, you need it. You need that marketing solution.
Ted: Just fill the schedule and notify people and remind them and send them the replay.
Ted: It’s a small price to pay. Sue, how do people get a hold on you to learn more about what you can do?
Sue: Sure. I think the best place to connect with me is on Facebook because that’s where I am. I've got my URL there. That’s just a redirection link but it’s suesierra.net/facebook. It will get you to my Facebook. I'm always there. If you want to reach me, you can find me there. No problem.
Ted: We see. I'm on there a lot too. It drive my kids crazy.
Sue: No doubt.
Ted: My clients are there. What the heck?
Ted: [Crosstalk 00:58:05] client there.
Sue: It’s a good playground for adults, for everybody.
Ted: Thank you very much, Sue. This has been great.
Sue: Thanks, Ted. Thanks for having me on.
Ted: We’ll talk soon. Thanks everybody.