Six Ways To Have A Memorable Presence During A Twitter Chat
I’ve been involved in nearly 100 Twitter chats over the years.
In the early days of Twitter, I created a Twitter Chat called #AdChat which ran for about a year. It was lots of fun and was one of the first Twitter chats about marketing. In addition to #AdChat, I ran a Twitter Chat (I forget what it was called) that was all about life as a 90s kid. Today, you’ll find me involved in Twitter chats like #Bufferchat and #TwitterSmarter and many more.
I’m a big fan of Twitter chats. I’m a fan of Twitter chats because they give you the opportunity to connect with a wide range of people about a topic you’re passionate about. You have the chance to meet new people. You have the chance to share ideas. You have a chance to make relationships that could forever change your business or life.
The key to seeing these benefits come to fruition is being a quality member of the Twitter chat. In this blog post, I’m going to share with you some of the strategies I’ve used when hosting or joining a Twitter Chat.
These are a few of the different tactics that I’ve seen used by some of the best:
1) Include Compelling Visuals & GIFs With Your Tweets
I talked about the value of using compelling images when I created the Ultimate Guide To Content Curation. The studies and ongoing research consistently shows that people resonate with visuals more than text and visuals do better on Twitter than written word.
When it comes to a Twitter Chat, it’s likely that you’ll be met with a topic like “Productivity & Meetings”. Rather than simply offering your own 2 cents on the topic, include tweets with images like this one:
Should you hold that meeting or not? pic.twitter.com/UP8wusimnv
— Ross Simmonds (@TheCoolestCool) July 23, 2016
Here’s another great example:
— Ed Leake (@EdLeake) July 19, 2016
According to Twitter, tweets with images are 35% more effective in terms of generating retweets than those without.
Twitter also released GIFs!
Whether you pronounce it GIF or JIF doesn’t matter – what matters is that people love them!
GIFs have made it easier to convey body language, instant humor and context. Use them throughout your Twitter chat to deliver interesting and more dynamic content to the conversation. It’s one of the easiest ways to stand out.
2) Engage In 2 or More Meaningful Conversations With Other Twitter Users
Throughout the Twitter chat, your goal is to do exactly that: Chat.
You want to share some thought starters that drive conversation and interact with people one on one. A lot of people join Twitter chats and try to steal the show by constantly pushing their own thoughts without actually interacting with those being passed along by the other attendees.
You want to engage frequently. The more interactions you can have with people, the more likely they are to follow you and keep the conversation going once the chat is over.
3) Prepare Some Of Your Answers In Advance So You’re Ready
Going into a Twitter Chat unprepared is like playing Settlers Of Catan without reading the rules. You can probably do okay but you would have done better had you prepared.
Some Twitter chats like #BufferChat share the agenda for the Twitter chat prior to the event:
— Buffer (@buffer) July 6, 2016
With information like this, it’s easy to create a spreadsheet with some pre-developed answers that you can cut & paste during the chat. This will allow you to spend more time focused on engagement while sharing these pre-developed thoughts right on time.
4) Remember To Use The Hashtag In Every Single Tweet
It’s easy to forget to include the hashtag when the conversation really heats up!
I’ve made the mistake many times and it’s something that you just have to remember. If you develop tweets well in advance, make sure you include the hashtag in the predeveloped tweet. For the various conversations you have throughout the #TwitterChat, it’s really on you to remember to include it.
Here’s an example of a Twitter exchange during #TwitterSmarter where the hashtag is used consistently:
— Twitter Small Biz (@TwitterSmallBiz) July 21, 2016
5) Promote The Twitter Chat A Few Hours Before So Your Followers Join In
The best Twitter Chats are the ones where you know a few people.
You might not be best friends with them but you’ve interacted before and have a bit of rapport. You want to have these relationships because you can give each other support, interact more intentionally with one another and have a more organic conversation.
Tweeting about a Twitter chat leading up to the event is a great way to bring a few of your connections for the ride. In addition to increasing the likelihood that you’ll know people in the Twitter Chat, you’re letting people know that a consistent flood of tweets is coming soon.
6) Use A Dashboard Tool Like Hootsuite To Follow The Tweets
Dashboard platforms like Hootsuite are a dream for every attendee of a Twitter Chat.
Similar to the old Twitter Dashboard, Hootsuite essentially lets you manage your entire account within their web app. When taking part in a Twitter chat you simply create a new stream with the hashtag from the chat and a it will fill with content. As the tweets come in, you have the ability to interact directly in the Hootsuite Dashboard without leaving your browser.
You can also include your own Twitter handle to ensure that you’re seeing both mentions and tweets from the chat. The dashboard comes in handy because the alternative is using Twitter search and bouncing back and forth between pages.
Over To You
Now it’s time for you to take these tips and tricks and put them in action.
If you’re ready to take your Twitter Chat skills to the next level here are a few chats to get you started:
#BufferChat: One of my favorites, it’s held every Wednesday at at 9 AM PST. The guests tend to range from Social Media Marketers like Christin Kardos to organic conversations between the Buffer team and the chatters. #BufferChat has a schedule that showcases both the recaps and upcoming chats online.
#TwitterSmarter: Twitter Smarter is a Twitter chat from Madalyn Sklar that talks about boosting and enhancing your presence on Twitter. Each week on Thursday at 1PM ET, a special guest joins Madalyn and a passionate group of marketers, professionals and executives to discuss Twitter and social media. You can check out the recap from my #TwitterSmarter chat all about content curation on their website.
#SEMRushChat: Each week the team at SEMRush host #SEMRushChat which is a discussion around all things content, SEO and inbound marketing. SEM Rush creates great recaps like this one all about developing high quality content so if you happen to miss one, you can check it out later. These chats are held every Wednesday at 11 am ET.
What do you think? Do you participate in Twitter chats? Which ones do you recommend? Any advice for those who are new to Twitter chats? Please share your thoughts and experience in the comments.