Twitter Chats are a great way to engage with like-minded individuals and brands on social media.
You may wonder why I am so excited about this… As much as I love being on Twitter, it can be difficult for me to really get to know the people in my network because there are thousands of them all speaking at once. I also don’t have a lot of time to sit down and tweet up a conversation on a regular basis.
Hosting and participating in Twitter chats is an opportunity for me to set aside time to have a chat/convo about a specific topic with other people who are also interested in that topic. Much like how I used the Answers feature on LinkedIn, it is also a great way to show your expertise in an area. Rather than telling people about what you know, you can demonstrate your knowledge in a relevant way.
Like most social conversations, there is a code of etiquette:
- Stick with the topic. It is annoying to the participants as well as the hosts when you get off topic using the chat hashtag. If you want to have a side conversation with someone in the chat, remove the hashtag.
- Follow the flow of the chat. If you arrive twenty or thirty minutes late, don’t start answering Q1. Jump into the conversation and start conversating in the flow. Not doing so is the equivalent of going to a cocktail party, walking up to a group of people and beginning your conversation with something they were talking about at the beginning of the hour. People are more likely to ignore what you are saying because they are trying to follow the real time conversation. If you want to go back after the chat and respond to previous questions, feel free. People often network after chats have ended and use it as an opportunity to further develop relationships.
- You don’t have to comment on every question. Only comment on the questions that you feel you can make a valuable contribution toward. You will gain more followers and credibility by offering insight versus general commentary.
Side note: you will probably lose followers by participating in twitter chats because you may congest some people’s twitter stream with information that they may deem unnecessary. However, you will gain followers from the chat who are more likely to engage with you because you have established a common interest and credibility. Don’t get caught up playing the numbers game and worrying about your follower count.
Now for the fun part… My favorite twitter chats!
I participate in these chats on a regular basis because the moderators do a great job sharing the content of the participants, they chose interesting topics and the tweople participating in the chats have demonstrated knowledge of a variety of subjects so I look forward to their insight.
- #L21Success – hosted by @TheLoop21 on Tuesdays at noon (CST), a variety of topics for entrepreneurs as well as conversations about current events and socially relevant issues
- #BrandChat – hosted by @BrandChat for #Brandidos on Wednesdays at 10am (CST), questions are posted prior to each chat with a target on high level branding for corporations and organizations, great for those starting out and wanting to connect with experienced marketers as well as for those with experience to network and demonstrate their knowledge
- #SoloPR – hosted by @SolorPR on Wednesday at noon (CST), an excellent forum and resource for those interested and involved in Public Relations, if you have PR questions, the groups continues to chat with the hashtag throughout the week
- #SBCchat – hosted by @SixBrownChicks on Wednesdays at noon (CST), connect with women from everywhere to talk about everything! I am constantly amazed at how out of the box some of the chats are while not becoming overtly sexual or vulgar yet allowing women a forum to express real thoughts about real issues
What’s your favorite TweetChat? Leave in the comments along with the host and time/date…