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Google+ Best Practices for Writers with Stephan Hovnanian -

Google+ For Your Writing Business

This week on The Writing Biz, Stephan Hovnanian joined me in a discussion on the benefits that Google+ offers and how the platform can take your writing business to the next level.

Stephan HovnanianCircle

Stephan is one of my favorite Google+ experts, he authored the Google+ Pro Tips series of books.
Google+ Pro Tips: Strategies for Posting and Sharing on Google+ 
Google+ Pro Tips: Strategies for Managing Your Google+ Circles 
Google+ Pro Tips: How to Get More Visibility on Google+ 
Google+ Pro Tips: How To Bring Your Audience To Google+ 
and he is working on more!

During the course of the show we discussed

  • What you should include on your Google+ Hovercard
  • Why you should make sure that your Google+ profile is complete and allows someone to get to know you
  • Why posting great content, sharing and commenting will get you recognized on Google+
  • How Google+ circles allow you to manage and improve the content in your stream.

Did you know that Google+ can build your “learning equity” by exposing you to the ideas and thoughts of others in your field. Those experiences will have a direct effect on how you do business and how you create.

But if I was going to pick THE ONE THING that will benefit your writing business the most, it would be the Hangouts feature. Yes, there are other video chat platforms but Hangouts are in a class by themselves.

As you know, The Writing Biz is created using the Google+ Hangouts On Air (HOA) feature, which is automatically propagated into YouTube. You may not know this, but YouTube is the 2nd largest search engine out there. But have you ever given any thought to all the other ways that you can apply Hangouts to the needs of your writing business? Here are some that we discussed in the show that take advantage of not only live Hangouts on Air, but also private and unlisted Hangouts:


Use Hangouts to train your staff, clients or to create a tutorial to share with your audience. The screensharing tools that Google offers inside the Hangout environment make it easy. Here’s a LifeHacker article by Adam Dachis,  on how that works. 


Start a Hangout with a colleague, co-author a blog post, a magazine article or maybe a book without all the back and forth emails and phone calls. This tool provides an opportunity to organically discuss and create in real time across the world. Martin Shervington has a great short video that shows how you can use Google Drive in a Hangout. 

Book Launches

Think about it. A LIVE book launch party with your audience from all over the world! Plus this would now be available on YouTube. It’s a great way to connect with someone who is searching for information on your books or maybe on the subject of your book. Now they can watch the video and learn all they need to know. You can also have links in the details and the comment stream to the book you are launching and any other books you may have written. One click and you have sold your book!


If you really want your audience to see what a wonderful book you have created make it easy for them. Record a reading of some of the content. You can record a reading at an event or one just for the video. You can then embed the video on your website or in emails. You can easily share the link across your social media platforms, use it in your media kit and send it out to reviewers.

Working with Your Publishing Team

You no longer have to struggle with communication problems as you are trying to bring all the pieces of the publishing process together. You can invite your publisher, your cover designer, your book designer, your agent and anyone else on your publishing team to discuss the project in real time and record it privately for everyone to have as a reference.


You can not only create a live interview show like The Writing Biz but you can also interview industry leaders at conferences, record a private interview to use to write a magazine piece and much, much more. Here’s a great example of the Hangout Whisperer himself, Ronnie Bincer at SXSW 2014, interviewing the photographer Carlos Austin. 

Meet the Author or Book Trailer

Use Hangouts to create a short bio piece about yourself to add to your website, media kit and other marketing opportunities, Create a dynamic book trailer that you can share.

Writing Group

How cool would it be to gather writing friends from all over the country, maybe even the world, to discuss your projects, share advice and learn form one another. Pour some awesome sauce on that! Check out this post by Mary Robinette Kowal on starting a Writers Group hangout.

Client Communication

This is one of my favorite uses for Hangouts. I can communicate with my clients world wide in a real way. It gives us both an opportunity to get to know one another and we are no longer just a faceless voice on the phone. We can also save huge chunks of time by getting rid of the back-and-forth emails and phone calls. It brings up my level of service that I can offer clients, increases my productivity and it makes me look cool.

I could go on and on but I won’t. I am pretty sure by now your brain synapses are firing off left and right with the realization of the possibilities that Google+ and Hangouts offer your business. Did I mention that IT IS ALL FREE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

NEXT WEEK on The Writing Biz it’s The Social Media Mash-Up with Jeff Sieh of Manly Pinterest Tips. This show will cover Pinterest, LinkedIn, Facebook and other social media platforms that you can use for your writing business.

My Personal Favorite Google+ Resources To Help You Be the Best You Can Be on Google+

People to Follow

Stephan Hovnanian– Watch the show and you will see why he is a MUST FOLLOW.

Ronnie Bincer :Is “The Wonderful Wiz He Is” of Hangouts. All knowing, all seeing Hangout Guru Extraordinaire. If you want to figure out “this wonderful thing called Hangouts” START HERE.

Martin Shervington of Plus Your Business- Martin creates wonderful helpful and dynamic tutorials that can bring you up to speed on using Google+ for your business.

Mia Voss– She is the tiara wearing, bat crap crazy HOA host that inspired me to get start my own HOA,

Christine DeGraff of Circloscope– One of my favorite #geekgirls. Christine always has great information on how to get organized and stay organized on Google+

Denis Labelle– His posts are incredibly useful. My favorite are his Weekly Round-Ups.

Peg Fitzpatrick– Peg has her finger on the pulse of what is Hot in social media.

Mark Traphagen– he is THE GUY when it comes to Google Authorship

Ryan Hanley– Ryan gets it. He understands that the way to engage with your audience is to be present and to create great stuff that they will wan to read, save and share. Content Marketing Warfare os one of my Favorite Hangouts & Podcasts.

There are many more people that I could suggest but this will get you started!

Terrific Google + Tips and Tools

Circloscope – Keep your circles organized.

Circle Count– I love this tool it helps me track my growth on Google+ and track post activity.

DoShare– This can help you schedule profile posts.

Some Very Helpful Posts

Google Plus Hovercard: the ultimate personal branding tool by Stephan Hovnanian 

Scheduling Google+ Posts: The Complete Guide by Mike Allton 

50 Things To Do On Google+ Right Now (Part 1) by Rick Eliason 

50 Things To Do On Google+ Right Now (Part 2) by Rick Eliason 

Pocket Guide to G+- This is full of oodles of information

Anatomy of a Perfect Google Plus Post by Dustin W. Stout 

Anatomy of a Perfect Hangouts On Air Guest Request by Stephan Hovnanian (Yep, that’s my request for him to be on this show!)

For more Resources Visit The Writing Biz Google+ Tips on Pinterest 



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This post was originally published on The Writing Biz blog.

LWilliams (37 Posts)

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Google+ Best Practices for Writers with Stephan Hovnanian

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