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Shel Holtz
Works at Shel Holtz brings nearly 35 years of experience to his speaking and consulting engagements. He is focused on digital and social media's role in organizational communications. He also blogs, podcasts, and enjoys jam music.
Attended CSUN
Lives in Concord, California
14,722 followers|445,538 views
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Shel Holtz

Google Hangouts On Air  - 
 
Paul Carr had a question earlier today about Google+ Hangouts on Air. I distribute the following (in a more formatted document) to the guests on the HOAs I run. This is adapted from a similar guide Lynette Young shared with me. (I had her permission to adapt it.) I hope you find it useful.

Thank you for agreeing to appear on a For Immediate Release HOA (Hangout On Air) on Google+. I wanted to give you some information on how the Hangouts work and tips and tricks to make the best of the experience! (And I especially want to thank Lynette Young for sharing a version of this document that I have adapted – ever so slightly – for FIR purposes.

HANGOUT ON AIR (HOA)

Hangouts On Air (HOA) are multiple-person video chats publicly streamed live on Google+ and automatically broadcast live to an unlimited audience, the stored as a recording on YouTube. The hangouts are also embeddable -- we will be displaying the live hangout from http://www.forimmediaterelease.biz/HOA.Anyone, even someone not logged into Google+ can watch a HOA. All they need is the link to the post on Google+ event page or the YouTube page where it will be streamed. HOAs are automatically recorded as YouTube videos that will be available on the FIR YouTube channel for replay. The audio of the show also will be distributed to subscribers as a podcast.

You can promote the event by sharing this URL with your communities:
http://forimmediaterelease.biz/index.php?/weblog/comments/fir_live_returns_with_panel_on_language_translation 

We have done a few of these in the past. You can watch the last one here:
http://forimmediaterelease.biz/index.php?/weblog/comments/fir_live_the_2014_class_of_iabc_fellows  

Our previous FIR Live episodes used BlogTalk radio (until they limited shows to 30 minutes without an exorbitant fee) and then TalkShoe. You can listen to any of these here:
http://www.forimmediaterelease.biz/index.php?/weblog/C11/ 

WHAT I NEED FROM YOU

1. Your bio, headshot, keywords, and links. We’ll use this information in both the show notes and the YouTube video description. Email your info to me at shel@holtz.com as soon as you can.

2. Your Gmail addresses. If you don’t have one, please head on over to Google and register.

3. Also, please visit the For Immediate Release page on Google+ and add it to one of your Circles. We can only invite you to the Hangout if we’re in a Circle. The page is here:
https://plus.google.com/b/105877451533262296645/105877451533262296645/

SEQUENCE OF EVENTS

JOINING THE HOA

When you are first invited to the HOA, you will receive a notification in Google Chat (so be sure you are logged into Google+ at least 15 minutes before our scheduled time – we start at 8 a.m. Pacific, 11 a.m. Eastern). Just click on the link to join. When you are invited to a Hangout, you will receive a pop up chat notification on your Google+ browser window. Invitations issued via circle membership will not trigger an individual invite message. If you don’t see your invite, visit the FIR profile and look for the Hangout listed with the blue “Join this hangout” button. Click and you are on your way!

You’ll first need to agree to the Google+ Hangouts Terms of Service.

GOING LIVE

Once all participants are in the pre-broadcast Hangout, I will let everyone know when I’m about to flip the switch to make it a public watch-only hangout. I have that magic button, so there’s no need to worry that you might hit something by accident. The live Hangout on Air is also streamed to YouTube.com/live, featured on the page, available as a YouTube player embed, and recorded for future viewing.

After the Live Broadcast is started, I’ll  ask you each to introduce yourselves briefly. Then we’ll jump into our discussion.

Even people without Google+ accounts or who are not logged in can view the video. 
IMPORTANT!! If you drop out of the hangout, just go back to the original link invite and join back in again. You can also visit the FIR Google+ stream and look for the JOIN HANGOUT button and jump back in. If I fall out of the Hangout, game over ;(

BLUE BOXING

While participating in a Hangout of any kind, you may notice that whomever is speaking (or has the loudest mic) takes center stage on your screen. If you don’t want to hop around so much visually, click on the filmstrip video of the person you wish to keep in focus. This is ‘blue boxing’, as they will have a blue box around their bottom ‘filmstrip’ video. To go back to auto-switching, click their box again to remove the border.  Just be sure not to hit the ‘report’ button by accident! During a recorded HOA, the system only records the primary speaker (or loudest participant) regardless of how you personally choose to view the Hangout. What this means is that at any time there is the possibility that YOU are on the main screen Hangout picture.

TIPS FOR A GREAT HANGOUT

Be sure to test your webcam and microphone at least an hour before our scheduled HOA time. If you have never participated in a Google+ Hangout of any kind, you must be sure the plugin for Google Voice is installed and working. To do that, go to your Google+ page and click on the “Start a Hangout” and go through the steps as if you were going to host your own hangout. Along the process you will be asked to install the Google plugin and possibly restart your browser. Once you can run through the tests to verify your microphone, speakers and webcam you are all set!

YOUR EQUIPMENT

Headphones. Use them, please. Even with only two people in a Hangout there is a possibility for a feedback loop (when each person hears themselves and others speak over and over and over again). I will have no choice to mute you out of the conversation even if you are giving us tomorrow’s winning lottery numbers. The earbuds that came with your smartphone or iPod will work just fine. If you have a Skype or gaming headset that has both the headphones and microphone built in that works as well. 

If you are using a laptop with the built in microphone it is CRITICAL that you use headphones or earbuds. No exceptions. Every person that has ever used both the built-in speakers and microphone has caused a horrible feedback loop.

Microphones. You need one to participate. There really isn’t any way around that. 
Webcam. Most of today’s webcams will work with Google+ Hangouts so long as you are able to use it successfully in Skype or Google Voice, you’ll be fine. If you have controlling software for auto focus or any of those wild over lays (bunny ears anyone?) be sure to turn it off. 

The auto focus specifically causes a great deal of lag in Hangouts as you ‘eat’ more bandwidth sending a video signal out that changes more often. Place your webcam either at or above eye level. 

Try to make sure you stay within video frame during the Hangout, a good rule of thumb is to keep the top of your head to your elbows visible in camera. No one wants to listen to you talk while getting a shiny view of only your forehead. 

YOUR ENVIRONMENT

Background. Try to see about having a ‘neutral’ backdrop for what appears ‘in camera’ on the Hangout. 

When you are broadcasting a video signal over the Internet in a Hangout, the more pixels that change/move the more data gets sent over the line. By keeping your background uniform and stationary you increase the quality of the video you appear in and reduce the chance of audio lag (meaning that you talk and the sound ‘appears’ a few moments later).

Noise levels. Turn off the phone, television, put the dog out first, give the kids your iPad to play with. Try to keep distractions down if possible. If you are finding that something is going on you need to attend to, mute your microphone and/or video feed (there are buttons that you control in the top right corner of the Hangout window). 

Lights. You will need them. Make sure you are in a brightly lit room. The key to good lighting is to place lights in front of you from a slight angle, not in back! Having a light behind you that shows up 'in frame' tends to throw off the entire video. Move your webcam around a bit so the 40 watt bulb behind you doesn't look as bright as the sun.
If you are looking to get fancy, a simple 3-point light setup composed of desk lamps and LED lights (or at least ‘daylight’ bulbs) go a long way. To make you stand out in the video and let people see you and not a dark shadow where your voice comes from. Wikipedia has a great quick tutorial of how to set up a 3-point light set. If nothing else, be sure you are not only lit from behind.

YOU

A HOA is a globally broadcast and recorded event which puts you on the world’s stage, be sure to look the part! If your background is light, wear something dark - or the other way around - in order to provide contrast to yourself. The video camera sees two dimensions not three like we do in ‘real life’.

Ladies, wear makeup or at least powder and lipgloss. The video camera and the lights can wash you out, so be a bit bolder than you would in person. Also be sure that the blouse you wear does not get ‘cut off’ in a strange position on the video screen. 
Gentlemen, shave (if you are so inclined)! Honestly a bit of face powder to hide the “shines” wouldn’t hurt either.
Be sure to use the restroom and grab a glass of water before you settle in for the Hangout.

Above all else, have fun! This is a chance for people to get to know you. Let your personality and expertise shine!
4
Krishna De's profile photoAV Shop Talk's profile photo
2 comments
 
This is perfect!  There are so many little settings that need to get dialed in for a HOA ech time.  I conduct HOS's every couple months so I always end up forgetting at least one step in my process.  I'll be adapting my own cheat sheet from this soon.  Thank you very much +Shel Holtz 
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Shel Holtz

Shared publicly  - 
 
A veritable cornucopia of news, reports, and posts in this week's Friday Wrap, my weekly summary of stories to help communicators stay on top of changes and trends in digital communication. Here's a rundown of the stories in this week's Wrap, the 149th in the series:

http://bit.ly/1CTKN4x

* Will Yahoo buy Foursquare?
* GE is producing a six-part TV series
* Snapchat stops selling Brand Stories
* EFF busts podcasting patent
* Twitter's hopes to attract logged-out users with new homepage
* Redesigned embedded tweets are coming
* LexisNexis gets into the media monitoring game
* Here come the holograms
* What you post today could haunt you in five years
* Brand advertising embraces emojis
* Will you soon able to find podcasts on Spotify?
* Selfies are useful in hotel marketing
* Stream Game of Thrones, lose your Twitter account
* Update could connect Android Wear watches to iPhones
* Meerkat is coming to Android
* More live-streaming is on its way
* 3D mobile ads gain traction on smartphones
* Three-quarters of shoppers use mobile devices in-store
* Millennials prefer email for brand contact
* Sales staff need presentation training
* Customers find personalized ads creepy
* Do the numbers spell doom for Google+?
* EU accuses Google of antitrust violations
* Amazon sues over fake product reviews
* Email with personality
* LinkedIn's Elevate prompts employees to share company content
* Skype for Business rolls out
*Microsoft's Delve evolves into a social tool
Flickr photo courtesy of Michael Coghlan. The Friday Wrap is a review of news, posts, reports, and other items appearing in the last week that will help you stay on top of the forces shaping communication in this fast-paced, ever-changing environment. These are stories that may have been lost in ...
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Shel Holtz
moderator

Discussion  - 
 
I'm working on putting an FIR Live panel together on digital signage. Any ideas for experts to invite to participate?
1
Harry Hawk's profile photoShel Holtz's profile photoSharon McIntosh's profile photoBernie Goldbach's profile photo
6 comments
 
I think you should include someone who has used tech like Asus' PC on a Stick, Chromecast, Roko, or Apple TV because you can cobble together simple set-ups with consumer technology now. In a previous (failed) start-up venture, I am named in a patent for intelligent digital signage. 
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Shel Holtz

Shared publicly  - 
 
Here's a rundown of what you'll hear in episode 803 of The Hobson & Holtz Report:

http://bit.ly/1PD9Npx

Collaborate/London workshop with Igloo Software on April 16;

Quick News: US Postal Service could find new business using augmented reality glasses, where to find and create your own animated GIFs, traveling employees embrace Uber and AirBnB, the Wall Street Journal’s approach to native advertising; the Media Monitoring Minute with CustomScoop;

News That Fits: How to run a successful blogger relations programme; Dan York’s Tech Report: Friendfeed really did shut down on April 9, Twitter ends its partnership with Datasift, and more; if leaders don’t use the internal social network, nobody will; listener comments in audio and in the FIR Podcast Community on Google+; Apple Watch: altering the face of technology retailing forever?; Igloo Software promo; the past week on the FIR Podcast Network; new modeling of the mediums of communication;

Music from The Pink Tiles; and more.
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Shel Holtz

Shared publicly  - 
 
If Adnan Syed's lawyers can produce a podcast about the case while pursuing an appeal, why can't YOUR organization produce a podcast that advocates on behalf of an issue important to the company?

http://holtz.com/blog/audio/why-cant-companies-use-podcasting-for-issues-advocacy/4494/
You can't talk about podcasting these days without someone bringing Serial into the conversation. The first season of the 12-episode true crime series was downloaded 68 million times as of early February, according to a CBS News report. The podcast, featuring host Sarah Koenig's distinct ...
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Shel Holtz
moderator

Inside PR  - 
 
Joe, Gini, and Martin discuss recent tech news with an impact on the news business, including streaming video apps and Facebook's desire to host news from The New York Times and other media outlets.

http://bit.ly/1H4PKN4
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Shel Holtz
moderator

FIR B2B  - 
 
FIR B2B episode 25 is up, with co-hosts Paul Gillin and Eric Schwartzman discussing new McKinsey research that argues B2B purchasing decisions are evolving to mirror B2C customer journeys. They also look at government agencies loosening their grips on scientists so they can speak freely about their research. For the interview this episode, Jeff Hawley joins Eric and Paul. Jeff is director of the Customer Experience Group for Yamaha Corp. of America, who talks about the group's nascent direct-to-consumer marketing.

http://bit.ly/1C80fcL
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Shel Holtz

Shared publicly  - 
 
How willing would you be to share your adult diaper story?

http://bit.ly/1EO2fMv
Customer stories are the best. That was the message from marketing executives at a recent Ad Age Digital Conference. Adobe's chief marketing officer, Ann Lewnes, for example, said, “Brand love leads to story making. The ability to get [consumers] to participate is so much easier than ever before ...
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Shel Holtz
moderator

The Hobson & Holtz Report  - 
 
Here's a rundown of what you'll hear in episode 803 of The Hobson & Holtz Report:

http://bit.ly/1PD9Npx

Collaborate/London workshop with Igloo Software on April 16;

Quick News: US Postal Service could find new business using augmented reality glasses, where to find and create your own animated GIFs, traveling employees embrace Uber and AirBnB, the Wall Street Journal’s approach to native advertising; the Media Monitoring Minute with CustomScoop;

News That Fits: How to run a successful blogger relations programme; Dan York’s Tech Report: Friendfeed really did shut down on April 9, Twitter ends its partnership with Datasift, and more; if leaders don’t use the internal social network, nobody will; listener comments in audio and in the FIR Podcast Community on Google+; Apple Watch: altering the face of technology retailing forever?; Igloo Software promo; the past week on the FIR Podcast Network; new modeling of the mediums of communication;

Music from The Pink Tiles; and more.
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Alex H Yong's profile photo
 
Great show. I'm telling several people about +Harry Hawk's chat with Dennis Yu.

About my comment on FIR 803, I'd like to say in advance that I wasn't being provocative, in case anyone felt I was. Just trying to say  influencers can move the needle for a brand, but a 'whore' who has figured out  the quid-pro-quo-wink-wink-"reviews"-for-gifts-or-cash-for-faux-earnedmedia "formula"  cannot if they're mixed into campaigns simply to combat "low turnout" at live events. This happens  A LOT! PR agencies will not admit to it because it proves that they're awful at getting top shelf influencers to attend promo events in the flesh. In all cases, disclosure needs to happen. That's really the bottom line, whores or no whores.

Wink-wink (quid pro quo) impressions  are paid media, not earned, because the gift (or cash) is a loss on the brand's P&L. Hence, faux "earned". It's disgusting.  #HeyPR #StopTheSleaze
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Shel Holtz

Shared publicly  - 
 
Here's the news you'll find in the 148th installment of the Friday Wrap, my weekly review of stories that will help you stay on top of the ever-shifting sands of the digital communication world:

http://bit.ly/1FsugdO

* About those teens fleeing Facebook...
* Twitter launches "retweet with comment"
* YouTube offers ad-free subscription
* Facebook Messenger comes to the desktop
* Google wants to connect you with local home-service providers
* Judge okays Facebook as a channel for serving divorce papers
* LinkedIn buys Lynda.com
* JP Morgan's program identifies rogue employees
* You can buy a book on Oyster
* Consumer use of ad blockers grows, fueling publisher concerns
* Expect to see mobile live streaming in the upcoming election
* Business travelers take to Uber
* Business travelers also move to AirBnB
* Racially-diverse emoji debut on latest iOS update
* Facebook attracts 75% of all social ad spending
* Brands find ways around Facebook's video rules
* Newspapers tap Instagram to find new readers
* YouTube enhances mobile ad interactivity
* Ello to launch a mobile app
* Smartphone app enables audio search
* Is Augmented Reality coming to the U.S. Postal Service?
* Snapchat drops Best Friends list in favor of Friend Emojis
* Here's why marketers and PR pros need to expand their skill sets
* Employee sentiment is a factor in assessing company value
* How CSR principles can be applied to improve advertising
* If leaders don't use the corporate social network, neither will employees
* Tech leaders use influence to address social and political issues
Flickr photo courtesy of Gage SkidmoreThe Friday Wrap is a review of news, posts, reports, and other items appearing in the last week that will help you stay on top of the forces shaping communication in this fast-paced, ever-changing environment. These are stories that may have been lost in the ...
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Shel Holtz
moderator

Linked Conversations  - 
 
Chuck Hester is back with episode 26 of Linked Conversations, wherein Chuck looks at some new LinkedIn features, including Security and Education.

http://bit.ly/1CtHsYM
1
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Shel Holtz
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Interviews  - 
 
In an FIR Interview, contributor Harry Hawk goes deep with Dennis Yu, a well-known Facebook marketing expert, on what it takes to succeed with both earned and paid posts.

http://bit.ly/1HMhjZB
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Harry Hawk's profile photoBernie Goldbach's profile photo
2 comments
 
This interview provides essential listening for my PR students because it emphasizes the importance of effective checklists during the campaign planning process.
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People
In his circles
1,071 people
Have him in circles
14,722 people
Nicole Whitman's profile photo
Lance Tracey's profile photo
Justin Go's profile photo
Akhil pradeep's profile photo
Isaac Pigott's profile photo
Aleksandar Ivanovski's profile photo
brian vessells's profile photo
Anna Salorinne's profile photo
Ava Lianna's profile photo
Education
  • CSUN
    1976
  • California State University, Northridge
  • El Camino Real High School
  • Canoga Park High School
  • Christopher Columbus Junior High School
  • Limerick Avenue Elementary School
Basic Information
Gender
Male
Birthday
August 6
Story
Introduction

Shel Holtz, ABC, is principal of Holtz Communication + Technology. His clients have included Intel, Sears, PepsiCo, Petrobras, Aetna, John Deere, Manulife Financial, Hewitt Associates, General Mills, USAA, Applied Materials, Symantec, Raytheon, The World Bank, Petrobras, Amdocs, Disney, FedEx, Freescale Semiconductor, The International Monetary Fund, National Geographic, The American Red Cross and Monsanto.

Shel has nearly 30 years of organizational communications experience in both corporate and consulting environments. He is experienced in employee communications, compensation and benefits communications, corporate public relations, media relations, financial communications, investor relations, and marketing communications. In addition to integrating technology into communications strategies, his expertise includes strategic communications planning, change management, organizational culture, communicating business initiatives, and communications research.

Before starting his own firm, Shel managed communications at two Fortune 500 companies and worked as a communications consultant for two global Human Resources consulting firms.

In addition to his consulting and development work, Shel is a regular speaker on topics surrounding the application of online technology to strategic organizational communication. He speaks regularly at IABC and Ragan Communication conferences. He also has been on programs for the International Quality and Productivity Center, The American Association of Collegiate Schools of Business, the American Gas Association, the American Institute of Certified Public Accounts, the Association of California Water Agencies, and the Western Pension & Benefits Conference, among others. He also spoke regularly on the Lexis-Nexis touring seminar, "Communicating in a Wired World."

Shel is a five-time winner of IABC's Gold Quill award (most recently winning in 1997 for external Web sites), and was named IABC/Los Angeles's Communicator of the Year in 1988. Shel served six years on IABC's executive board, two as director of U.S. District 6 and four as a director-at-large. While a director-at-large, he held the Technology portfolio, among others. During his term on the board, he served three times as a member of the executive committee. He has also served as chapter president for IABC/Los Angeles and in a variety of other volunteer positions in IABC at the chapter, district and international levels. Shel earned his IABC accreditation (ABC/Accredited Business Communicator) in 1984.

In 2005, Shel was named an IABC Fellow, the highest honor IABC confers on its members.

His other memberships include a role as a research fellow and advisory board member of the Society for New Communication Research.

Shel has applied online technology to his communication efforts on behalf of companies and clients since the mid-1980s. His most recent book is "How to Do Everything with Podcasting," co-written with Neville Hobson and published by Osborne/McGraw-Hill. He is also the co-author of "Blogging for Business," co-written with Ted Demopoulos and published by Kaplan. Earlier books include "Corporate Conversations," a guide to employee communications, published by Amacom. "Public Relations on the Net," published by AMACOM; and "The Intranet Advantage," published by Ziff-Davis Press. He also wrote the manuals, "Communication and Technology" and "Communicator's Guide to Intranets," published by Ragan Communications and "Writing for the Wired World," published by IABC.

Work
Occupation
Organizational Communications Consultant
Employment
  • Shel Holtz brings nearly 35 years of experience to his speaking and consulting engagements. He is focused on digital and social media's role in organizational communications. He also blogs, podcasts, and enjoys jam music.
    Principal, present
  • Alexander & Alexander Consulting Group
  • Allergan, Inc.
  • William M. Mercer, Inc.
  • Mattel Inc.
  • ARCO
  • Canoga Park Chronicle
  • California Apparel News
  • Thousand Oaks News-Chronicle
Places
Map of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has lived
Currently
Concord, California
Previously
San Fernando Valley, California
Shel Holtz's +1's are the things they like, agree with, or want to recommend.
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