Have you ever been having a conversation with yourself – in a muttering under your breath kind of way – and someone answered? Possibly a stranger, let’s say on the train, has involved themselves in your conversation with… yourself.
Or perhaps you’ve just announced something to the room, and someone has joined in?
This is Twitter.
Most of the time.
Pretty much you talking to you. Until someone else randomly replies.
You might occasionally include someone’s handle (their @), whether it’s a friend, business or a celebrity, but it can still feel very much like you’re Tweeting into nothing.
However, this doesn’t have to be the case. The whole purpose of a Hashtag is to invite people in and join conversations. Commonly this is around what’s trending, such as a new TV show or breaking news, and it’s a great way to get an understanding of a lot of different people’s thoughts and emotions.
It’s also a great tool to utilise at events.
Leading up to any event that you want to share on Twitter it’s a good idea to do a bit of research and see if there is an official hashtag. Many companies are using them these days so it’s good to include in your Tweets leading up to the event too.
If there isn’t an ‘official’ event hashtag then have a look to see if any other companies are using something and join them. Alternatively, create your own but keep it consistent in each of your Tweets. You never know, you could be starting the next trend!
If you’re hosting an event be sure to add the hashtag to all of your Social Media, Website and any print advertising too. If you’re handing out leaflets or event guides, then add the hashtag to those and encourage visitors to engage online. Take some time at the start of your event to tell people about the benefits of using Twitter for events and how they can make connections.
Organise a competition on the day for the best tweet or selfie with the hashtag. Retweet and reply to attendees to keep the conversation going. Set up a list for all the attendees and people using the hashtag so you can follow up with them after and allow them the opportunity to find each other.
If you’re simply attending, hosts will likely ‘retweet’ you if you’re advertising their event and the best way for them to notice you is to use their hashtag. This will increase your reach and potentially will give you a chance to connect with other companies attending the event. From this, you could arrange to meet some business connections and turn the event into a networking opportunity.
If you’re speaking at the event, this is an easy and free way to let people know where and when you’ll be speaking and tease little pieces of your presentation beforehand to encourage people to attend. If you have a stand, it can also be a good method to guarantee traffic coming your way.
The next time to utilise the hashtag functionality on Twitter is when you’re at the event. Especially if it’s a Marketing or Social Media event when everyone around you will be doing the same thing.
If the event is about teaching you new things or has statistics that support your Product or Services, then share this with your followers – whilst using the hashtag of course. This is a great way of including those who weren’t able to attend and sharing your experience with your online audience.
Lastly, the conversation doesn’t have to finish when the event does. Keep the conversation going post-event and discuss what you did/learnt with your followers. Thank those who came to your event/stand and the new networking connections you have made.
If you’re sharing a blog post or video post-event, use the hashtag here to increase your potential reach and possibly reengage with others who attended. Don’t be afraid to use more than one hashtag in your tweets where relevant, you might open up a whole new conversation.
A lot is going on Twitter and most of it is text-heavy with links and hashtags so try to be as visual as possible. If you’ve taken any pictures of the venue, key speakers or slides then be sure to share this in your Tweet to stand out from the crowd.
Twitter is a step between Instagram and LinkedIn. It’s great for professional connections but also keeping up with celebrities and other companies. This means that your tone needs to match. Where your character limit is short, don’t be afraid to cut to the chase but allow your personality or brand to shine through too. You’re joining the conversation so don’t be afraid to come across chatty and friendly.
If you can’t find an existing conversation or hashtag but need to reach out to your Twitter network for answers then don’t be afraid to start the conversation yourself and wait for others to join, someone has to initiate it!
We love taking part in events and helping brands get noticed in the lead-up and on the day of the event. We can help your business get ready for an event by creating a strategy, providing your team with Twitter training or helping you tweet on the day. To find out more about Twitter for Events and how we use it, visit our events page.
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