FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

How it works


How long does it take to get setup with Business Hangouts?

Since there’s no download required, setup is as simple as signing in. However, a setup call can help walk you through how to get the most out of Business Hangouts, help you run tests, and answer any questions you have along the way.
 
Go live immediately after signup using our default Business Hangouts Cloud for instant unlimited storage. If you plan on configuring your YouTube Live to store your BHO broadcasts, allow 48 hours for live streaming clearance if you don’t have it already.

How do I invite people to a Business Hangout?

There are several ways to Invite people in a BHO Event

BHO REGISTRATION LINK – Step 5 of Event Setup

After creating your event, share your registration link via email or Social Media. Users will go to a registration page where they can sign up for the event.  Once registered, they will receive invitation, reminder, and post event emails.

BHO PRE-REGISTER – Step 3 of Event Setup

You can pre-register your invitees and they will receive an automated email indicating they are registered for the event.  In step 3 of event setup, you select “Additional Options” then “Automatic attendee pre-registration”.

Follow the instructions as the file must be tab delimited.

NOTE: In this method you are pre-registering viewers in the system. Never pre-register a participant as you will not be able to promote them.  Also, if you are charging for the event, pre-registered users will skip the payment page.

Do I need a Google Account to Use Business Hangouts?

No. You can create an account with any email address you’d like.

Same goes for your audience, who can have access using alternate email addresses as well as social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Linkedin.

What time zone are Business Hangouts stored in?

The host schedules the BHO event with their own time zone and it automatically adjusts for attendee time zone.  The time zone shown in your attendee’s profile is the one used by the system to generate their confirmation e-mail.

How many simultaneous video participants can be in a Business Hangout?

A host can have an unlimited number of video participants by promoting and demoting viewers at anytime.
The system allows for up to 10 simultaneous video streams.

By limiting the maximum number of streams to ten at a time, Business Hangouts can ensure a quality event for your viewers .

 

How do the mute and volume settings work?

The host can mute or un-mute anyone globally.  The same applies for the volume amplification. Participants actions apply only to themselves.

How does the Host know what the Viewer and Participants are seeing?

The host is the conductor of a Business Hangout.  Prior to a Business Hangout starting, the host can setup a pre-event video or animated images to pump up the audience.

Once the event is started, the Host decides what viewers see in the big rectangle on the right hand side. The options for streaming are video stream, screen share and content sharing. Content Sharing allows you to collaborate on any document in your Google Drive.

The Hosts and Moderators have several options for Video Streaming.  They can use presenter or collaborator mode.  In Presenter Mode, the host selects who is broadcast. In Collaboration Mode, it will automatically broadcast users when they speak. .

Only the broadcasted content is recorded.

The host is acting as a cameraman as they select the content or video stream to go on the main frame which is recorded.

Of course, if you are new user and just getting familiar with the system, the full proof way to know what a participant or viewer is seeing is to be a participant or viewer yourself or to invite a friend.  Make sure you use a different email address and computer when you do this.

How do I start my scheduled Business Hangout?

Login to the Planner and Select “Go Live”.

To start your broadcast, you can select the REC button. It will turn from green to red once you’ve gone live. That’s when your viewers can see the stream. Until then, the Moderator can collaborate with Participants before the recording begins.

Are Business Hangouts secure? How do I maintain privacy?

Several levels of privacy are put in place for Business users’ convenience:

  • Business Hangouts use a secure URL  which makes them unique to the meeting and to the attendee.The ‘S’ at the end of HTTPS stands for ‘Secure’. It means all communications between your browser and the website are encrypted. HTTPS is often used to protect highly confidential online transactions like online banking and online shopping order forms. Web browsers such as Internet Explorer, Firefox and Chrome also display a padlock icon in the address bar to visually indicate that a HTTPS connection is in effect.
  • Invitation URLs are only valid for the duration of the meeting.
  • For Google Apps clients, using BHO on their domain, the host can restrict the event to the domain. In this case, a Google sign-in with an account from inside the domain is required to be able to watch. This protects the host and the content even if someone discloses the link to a BHO to undesired people.
How can I see who is going to attend my event?

 

Select Scheduled Events from the Planner Menu.  You will see a list of all your events.  Under the registered users columns, you can select the highlighted number of registrants.  Clicking this link will redirect you to a list of all your registered users.  

How does chat moderation work?

A host can select the moderated chat option (small lock) a the top of the Universal Chat to approve comments before they are posted.  Once on, only the host will see comments and can approve or decline them.

How can I brand my Business Hangouts?

There are several ways you can brand your Business Hangouts:

  • Change the banners in the registration link and login link
  • Design a picture 850 x 210 pixels, as a JPEG, PNG or GIF file then upload the image  to customize the event page.
  • Design a full custom registration page with video embed.
  • Customize your email templates.
  • Create your own “Lower Third” in the Account Profile menu.
  • Customize the background image of your comment broadcasts.
  • Set a custom video or animated gif files during the pre-event.

General Questions


How many simultaneous video participants/speakers is possible with Business Hangouts?

The number of simultaneous video feeds is limited to 10 to keep the event manageable.

Have more than 10 speakers?

No problem.  With Business Hangouts you can elevate any “viewer” to become a “participant” (= speaker) at any time, and return a participant to become a viewer, at any time. Also BHO’s unified chat is very efficient and allows viewers to ask questions and interact with the panelists easily.

Why switch to Business Hangouts?
Business Hangouts is :
  • Fully Customizable with your Brand on Event Pages and Emails
  • Much less expensive for larger events
  • Higher quality of audio and video
  • Integrated with other G Suite and Google Drive

BHO adds even more enterprise-friendly features to Hangouts making it an ideal platform for small business and associations as well as corporations:

  • Full Event planning features: Reservation management, invitations, automatic reminders,
  • Video or Animated Pre-Roll For Your Attendees
  • Universal Chat
  • Detailed Statistics Post Event
  • Moderation and Control
Why not just use Google Meet?

If you want to run a Hangouts casually with some of your friends, you don’t need BHO. But if you try to use Hangouts for:

  • a webinar,
  • a demo of your software,
  • a customer day event,
  • a training or a virtual classroom,
  • a sales kick-off,
  • an on-boarding session with new employees,
  • providing support to your customers….

then Business Hangouts is for you.  You will get the following with Business Hangouts that is not available on regular Hangouts:

  • Fully featured registration module to setup a registration page for your attendees
  • Sign-in from Facebook, LinkedIn and BHO
  • Custom invitation e-mails
  • Customized automatic reminders for your Hangouts
  • Follow up with attendees with custom automatic e-mails only to those who effectively attended and include survey or documentation or similar links,
  • Post Event Informed Analytics
  • Ability to Save Chat history
  • Follow up with those registrants who didn’t show up with custom automatic e-mails and include new invitation or documentation or similar links,
  • Engage with your viewers and promote them to Full Participants
  • Designate one or more participants as moderators who can assist the host in controlling the streams and produce more professional events
  • Get a fixed URL of a permanent Hangouts that you can communicate to your clients or put up on a website
  • Private Recordings to YouTube
  • Output report lists of registrants, effective attendees, absents,…
What are the differences between hosts, moderators, participants, viewers and attendees ?

The person initiating the Webinar is a Host.  The Host has full moderation controls and decides who gets into the meeting.

A viewer is anyone who enters the event.  Viewers can watch the video stream and participate in Universal Chat.  Viewers can be promoted to Participants.  Participants can use video chat and become part of the stream.  Moderators are promoted Participants who have the ability to promote and demote other viewers/participants.

Attendees is a general term used in Business Hangouts covering both Participants AND viewers. The number of attendees is the sum of the number of participants plus the number of viewers.

What is Unified Chat?

Business Hangouts provides a single chat, used by hosts, moderators, participants and viewers.  The universal chat features the following:

  1. Moderation Option – You Approve which comment are seen
  2. Promote to Stream – By clicking the eye in a chat bubble the stream will see the user’s comment and name.
  3. Flag for Later – Putting a “Star” on certain comments will allow you to quickly find them later
  4. Anonymous Messaging – Attendees can post messages without displaying their name or profile pictures.
  5. Document Sharing – Documents can be shared universally between users on the Unified Chat.
  6. Delete Comments – Moderators can trash any comments they want removed.
  7. Export – Hosts can extract the chats during or after the event.
  8. Pre & Post Event Notifications – Hosts can opt to receive emails with any posts before and after the presentation.
Updating Recurring Events
Adding new occurrences copies all the parameters of the last event of the existing series.   “Save all” modifies future events only and has no effect on past events.
How does the paywall feature work?

When you want to setup a paid event and charge event attendees a fee – you need to simply enable this feature inside Business Hangouts.  As you are setting up your event, and as you reach Step 4, click on the “Charge for your event” option.  Once there, enter the amount you want to charge for your event, currency type and your PayPal email address.  This is the email address you use for your PayPal account.  Keep in mind that Business Hangouts does not charge any fees for this and all payment processing will happen through PayPal.  (PayPal will pay you directly).     Your event attendees will be able to pay you via this PayPal account.   When a potential attendee registers for your event, and once Business Hangouts gets confirmation that a valid payment to your account has been made, we will release the registration information to the attendee by email.

Rest Assured – Only users who pay will be able to see your Live Stream and Replays

Sales Questions


What is the cancellation or refund policy? How does the Free Trial work?

Business Hangouts offers a free 14-day trial for all our products.  You can cancel at anytime during the trial for any reason and you will not be charged.  Simply email billing@businesshangouts.com that you want to cancel your trial before the last day and you will not be charged.

Need more time to try it?  No problem, just let us know why and we will probably extend you a couple more weeks 🙂

Once you are charged for the service there are no refunds.  You can cancel at anytime using billing@businesshangouts.com , however un-billed service is not refundable.

Do you offer discounts for non-profits or educational institutions?

We love educational institutions (we spent lots of time in them) and good causes.  Let us know your budget and we will try to work with you.  Email sales@businesshangouts.com

 

What kind of payment do you accept?

Business Hangouts accepts all Major Credit Cards & PayPal.  Additionally, we can invoice you if necessary.

To pay by wire transfer:

Please email billing@businesshangouts.com with any specific requirements.

To pay with PayPal:

paypal@business-hangouts.com

Why do I need to enter a credit card for the Free Trial?

Business Hangouts invests significant time in every free trial to ensure our customers have a great experience. By requiring a credit card, we find it separates the serious testers from folks just kicking the tires.  We are confident once you try the service, you will stay with us.

Regardless, if your organization does not have a credit card to use for free trials, please email sales@businesshangouts.com and we will setup a trial account for you manually.    Please allow 2 business days to set this up.

Can I get a demonstration of the product?

Yes!  We love showing off our product.  Please schedule a demo.

Tech Support Questions


What is your Technical Support Policy Overview?

24/7 Technical support is provided to all subscribers.

Office Hours: Free weekly session, inside a BHO, accessible to all.  Come ask your technical questions. Register here.

E-mail : The support by e-mail allows you to ask individual questions privately. It is provided on a case by case basis.

Phone: Enterprise subscribers and Managed Services clients have access to phone support during operating hours.

What are the system requirements for Business Hangouts?
  • Hardware: Mobile iOS (iPhone, iPad) or Android, with any HTML5 compatible browser. Laptop or Desktop, Mac, Windows, Linux with Chrome, Firefox or Safari
  • Bandwidth: Minimum Download 1 mbps , upload 0.1 mbps
  • No Audio/video peripheral required.
  • No need for any account. Viewers can sign in with just an email, or a social sign in like Facebook, Google+ or LinkedIn, depending on the host’s decided setup.
  • FOR PARTICIPANTS OTHER THAN THE HOST (i.e. Speakers, Guests, Panelists)
    • Full feature on Laptop or Desktop, Mac, Windows, Linux with Chrome, Firefox or Safari
    • Reduced features on Mobile iOS. Only the basic Hangouts features are available for them on Mobile. (iPhone, iPad) or Android, with any HTML5 compatible browser.
    • Bandwidth: Minimum Download 7 mbps , upload 4 mbps for HD video. Lower bandwidth will make video low resolution, but are still acceptable down to 2 mbps
    • Headset (preferred) or speakers + Noise cancelling microphone, and webcam/camera.
    FOR THE HOST
    • Laptop or Desktop, Mac, Windows, Linux with Chrome, Firefox or Safari.
    • Bandwidth: Minimum Download 7 mbps , upload 4 mbps for HD video. Lower bandwidth will make video low resolution, but are still acceptable down to 2 mbps
    • Need Headset (preferred) or speakers + Noise cancelling microphone, and webcam/camera.
    • The host needs a Business Hangouts subscription.
    I read Google stopped supporting Third Party Apps.

    Business Hangouts leverages many of Google’s APIs for Calendar, Drive, YouTube, Authentication.   Business Hangouts is unaffected as we use our own, proprietary application instead of the Hangouts API.

    What Camera do you Recommend?

    Any camera will work! With our media options, you can use basic built in webcams or hook up external cameras and microphones to optimize sound and video.

    Does Business Hangouts work with Google's New "Service" Accounts? We like to save money.

    Business Hangouts uses several Google APIs including Google Calendar and Google Drive.  Since “Service” Accounts do not have Calendar or Drive, they will not work with Business Hangouts.

    NOTE: Business Hangouts does work with free Gmail accounts if you really are looking to save money 😉

    How do I use multiple cameras?

    Some of our customers have success with this  mixing board.  Please don’t hesitate to contact us if you have specific needs that can be handled by our managed services.