Post by @erinnray
Google continues to expand their empire. Think about all of their product offerings – from Search, Gmail, Chrome, Maps, YouTube, Google+, Google Hangouts and now their latest is Google Helpouts. When you see it listed out like this you realize they’ve got us covered and continue to create a useful experience through all of their offerings working together to make our lives easier.
Helpouts is a unique way to get real help from real people in real time. They’ve created a video chat platform similar to Hangouts to connect with individuals who are experts in their interests – doctors, counselors, personal trainers, mechanics, foodies, you name it. You can choose who to seek help from based on qualifications, availability, rates and reviews. Some of the Helpouts will have a charge, but guess what? They’ve got an easy tool to handle your payment too, through Google Wallet. Some Helpouts will be provided at no cost but the idea is that it’s a paid platform to connect with other experts and exchange knowledge, even if it’s just for a couple of minutes. It’s getting that answer as quickly as possible, on demand.
At the launch, they have more than a thousand brands and individuals across a variety of interests and needs to kick it off. Interest categories range from arts and music, computers & electronics, cooking, education & careers, fashion & beauty, fitness & nutrition, health, home & garden. Right now Google is reviewing and approving every provider to ensure their platform launches with quality experts.
And of course this is integrated with search. Think of how many times you jump online to search for “How to…” or ask a question. The Helpouts video content will appear in search results to link you to these experts.
Brands can utilize this platform to further humanize the people behind their brand and offer a unique value to their customers and potential customers alike to grow loyalty and increase trial of their product or service. From previewing the functionality and hands on experience of a new product to offering access to a charismatic CEO. Hey Richard Branson, want to jump on a Helpout and teach me some brilliant business tips as the mogul of Virgin Group.
Think you are qualified to be an ‘expert’? Think about it, if you are knowledgeable on certain subjects and comfortable on camera why not make a few extra bucks and apply to become an expert provider for Google Helpouts. You can request a code here to be invited to provide Helpouts after their review process.
For my fellow hypochondriacs out there I’m not sure if this is a good or bad thing as it gives us access to connect with Doctors to drill them on every little symptom in real time. So long WebMD, hello Helpouts!
The exchange of knowledge continues to accelerate and it’s great to see companies like Google out there bridging this exchange. Oh Google, what will you think of next to make my life easier. What do you think of this new platform offering? Would you pay to get a quick answer…