Many moons ago, I wrote about the rise of Google+ as a business-critical social marketing platform.

Since then, nothing’s occurred across the social media landscape that makes Google+ any less important. To the contrary, according to online marketing consultancy, Green Lotus: “Google + is quickly becoming an important factor in the Google search engine ranking algorithm, and it will continue to grow in importance and influence as a social platform.”

Xerox Google HangoutOne of the many powerful content marketing tools made available by Google+ is called the Google Hangout. In essence an online video conference call, Google Hangout is free for anyone with a Google+ account, which also is free.

But there’s more behind the curtain than a basic video conferencing tool. And while I’d love to share my admittedly intermediate-level knowledge, I’ll instead yield the podium to the experts on all-things-IT, Spiceworks, for their take on the whats, whys and hows of Google Hangouts.

I encourage you to check out the article, “Breaking Down a Google Hangout,” for a more in-depth exploration of the ways in which small-business content marketers can achieve a more prominent online presence by leveraging this powerful, freely available tool.

If you have experience using Google Hangouts as part of your marketing efforts, I’d love for you to leave a comment below with any thoughts, opinions, and/or tips and tricks you’re willing to share.

As always, thanks for reading.