Using Twitter for Events

Using Twitter during live events will increase your chances of interaction with users who are knowledgeable and connected in your industry or on your topic. Additionally, it is always quite possible that your tweets could become helpful resources for others researching the same niche. While it is always optional to just wing it, you may have much better luck and higher engagement if you understand more fully how to be as effective as possible during live tweeting or event based Twitter sessions.

What is Live Tweeting?

Live Tweeting is a method of engaging on Twitter for a continuous period of time. These live tweeting sessions can last anywhere from twenty minutes to several hours. It is important to have a focus on either a popularly tweeted topic or on an event that you created or are participating in. Regardless of the type of live tweeting you are focusing on, you will definitely need to designate hashtags for your live tweeting session to make communications more direct, easier to follow, and free of other tweeters chatter.

Using Hashtags #

Choose your hashtag so that your activities are set apart from the day-to-day chatter on Twitter and to help provide context for your followers. If you were tweeting about the conference you are attending called Social Media for Experts, you may choose the hashtag #SMfE. Once you have designated your hashtag you can advertise it pre-event to those who may be interested in attending the live event.

Why Live Tweet?

Why would you want to live tweet? There are a few viable reasons to run or attend a live tweeting session.

  • Make contact with people with the same interests, niche or industry that you can follow and ask for a follow back to help increase your network and reach.
  • Helps to create a voice and a record for your brand that shows your ability to inspire, manage, and present helpful, relevant and educational material.
  • Initiate in-person meet ups with experts or professionals in your niche during conferences events.

Twitter Event Equipment Checklist

In order to have all of your bases covered, you may want to gather a few things before your Twitter event begins.

  • Laptop/Desktop Computer
  • Laptop/Phone Charger
  • Extension Cords
  • Wifi Card/Secure Internet Connection
  • Posting Software – Tweetdeck, Hootsuite or your preferred software
  • Monitoring Software –  TweetGrid, Tweetchat or your preferred software
  • Camera
  • Smartphone

Keeping all of these items handy will prevent you from interrupting your own live Twitter event due to any equipment failures, power outages or other events beyond your control.

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Tips for a Live Tweeting

If you are attending a live tweeting session at an event or conference you should follow a few helpful tips to make the experience flow smoothly and without undue stress.

  • Scout out your location options. If the speakers or panelist are too far from view or out of hearing range, you will not be able to keep on top of the live chatter but instead are likely to have to gain your information second-hand. Try to get to the event early if possible to get a spot closest to the event speakers.
  • Arrange your equipment so that it is within reach and out of any other attendees walking area. Not only do you want to avoid tripping others, but also avoid damage to expensive equipment.
  • Double check your internet connection. Do not wait until the event starts to find out you need to gain wifi access with a password, or that your Ethernet cable will not reach the port.
  • Before the event kicks off make sure you have a list of the presenters names, their Twitter handles, and any titles or important URL’s related to their presentations or biographies. If required, make sure to shorten the links with a service like bit.ly before the conference begins.
  • Check for any important hashtags on your program or the conferences website and save it in your Twitter dashboard.
  • When possible, go ahead and pre-schedule a few vital tweets you want to get into the live chatter. Others you will have to tweet as you go.
  • Try to keep clutter on your laptop to a minimum.

Within 48 hours of the event ending you should head to a utility such as HootSuite Archives or WTHashtag to create a record of the event. You can later add this to your own blog or networks.

Etiquette for Live Tweeting

Don’t try to dominate the tweets, go for quality of quantity. This is a great networking opportunity, so be a good sport retweet tweets that other attendees get to that you support and agree with. Find some people that you like and retweet and then follow them if appropriate. Make sure you thank those that retweet you, but do it without the hashtag so you don’t spam up the live chat happening with that tag. It’s OK to self promote but do it sparingly and keep it relevant. Self promotion is OK if your referencing content or material that is relevant to the conversation.

Contradicting a speaker or another tweeter? This is an absolute must for me, but I double check my facts, and prepare for the blowback. Events and Live Tweets are a source for information and if someone is using the pedestal to put out inaccurate information I feel you have an obligation to counter it. This doesn’t mean you call out the data in an unprofessional manner, but you can always offer it in a form like:

  • “Are you sure because the data from this article contradicts that”
  • “I found a different result”
  • “This article mentions a different tactic or method”

In the end, act and engage in a manner you would like to be viewed and remember a tweet is for life, even if you delete it, the library of congress has it forever!

Sources:

Image 1 c/o redmondpie.com

Image 2 c/o actevablog.com

About Basil Puglisi

@BasilPuglisi is a Content Contributor and the Chairman of the Board for Digital Ethos. Basil C. Puglisi is also the Digital Marketing Manager for PMG Interactive. As the Digital Marketing Manager he provides oversight and support to Digital Campaigns, from Website Development to Search and Social Reach.

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