Interested in Twitter chats? We’ve got a quick two-part series of posts about them! Here’s the first. Check back tomorrow for the second.
If this spreadsheet is any indication there are a lot of Twitter chats out there; no matter your brand or area of interest, there’s sure to be one you can benefit from joining. But where to start? Check out these tips for maximizing your Twitter chat experience.
First things first:
- Identify the chat or chats you want to join in on, and schedule them on your calendar with a pop-up reminder. This way they won’t sneak up on you and if you get busy, you won’t forget about them.
- Lurk before you jump in: most chats are completely welcoming of newcomers, but if it makes you more comfortable just to sit back and observe a few times, do it.
- Read over a transcript of an old chat session before joining in. Searching a chat hashtag will show you if they have one, and allow you to discover if it’s a good fit for the type of chat you’re looking for, and you can learn the conversation style.
When you tweet:
- When you do join in, tell everyone that you’re new! Many will go out of their way to welcome you, and encourage you to join in on the conversation.
- If you’re planning on tweeting for your brand, consider joining in on a personal handle first. That way you can get a feel for the way the conversation rolls in action, without any potential harm to your brand from a misunderstanding. 140 characters is short, especially when you’re adding a hashtag!
- With that said, keep your tweets short and sweet: other chat participants can more easily add their own thoughts and retweet you if you keep it as succinct as possible
- Don’t be afraid to respectfully disagree with someone else’s opinion on a strategy or tool, etc, but keep it courteous; it goes without saying that you don’t want to be contentious enough to get blocked from the chat
- If you think someone misunderstood you, clarify your meaning and intent. If they’re determined to be upset, apologize and drop it
- Don’t talk over the host or special guest, if there is one meant to be answering prearranged questions. Add your thoughts or expertise and share resources, but don’t dominate the conversation when you’re not the special guest
- Some chats won’t have special guests and the hosts act more as roundtable moderators, moving the conversation along. Chime in freely here.
Joining in on Twitter chats is a great way to connect with people in your industry, learn more about a topic or facet of an industry you’re new to or want deeper knowledge of, and to pick up new tools of the trade recommended by others.
By making regular twitter chat connections, you’ll potentially find yourself with more meet-ups at the next conference you attend, an online mentor to ask tricky industry questions to, or simply some new and wonderful Twitter friends.
Got any tips we missed? Disagree with one? Talk about it in the comments!