Live Tweeting at Events

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We’ve all seen that one super active person at a conference tweeting away furiously. Are you that person? I’m not, but I sure would like to know why people do it and what they get out of it. So this week, we spoke to Anita Kirkbride about live tweeting at events and why brands should do it more. Here’s a summary of our chat.

Topic: Live tweeting at events
Guest: Anita Kirkbride
Format: Eight questions directed at the guest. Everyone’s welcome to share.

Q1: Why should you live tweet at an event?

There’re a lot of reasons to live-tweet at events. As our guest pointed out, one of them is so that you can recall and remember key points of a presentation or session better. It’s also a good way to share your learnings with others in your network.

It’s also a signal to your audience—by live-tweeting, you tell them what kind of events you normally attend and what topic interests you the most.

As our guest added, live-tweeting is an excellent way to personally engage with the presenters and organizers of an event and build relationships.

Q2: How do you find others who are tweeting about the same conference?

The easiest way to find others attending and live-tweeting at the same event is to follow the event’s official hashtag. Click the hashtag and scroll through the tweets to find other tweeters.

Also, keep an eye on the event organizer and presenters. They or other attendees might create public lists of all attendees, presenters, and crucial brand sponsors. You can also subscribe to the list to get updates from those who’re live-tweeting.

Jeremy also suggested following members of the speakers at the event, as well as their audience—who’ll likely be attending or tweeting about it too. It’s a great way for you to find others interested in similar things and engage in meaningful conversations.

Q3: How do you prepare your Twitter account for live tweeting?

Our guest said she’d only add the event’s hashtag to her display name on Twitter, as a way to inform her audience that she’d be attending and live-tweeting.

Christine shared a few more tips, including announcing to your followers that you’ll be live-tweeting. It’s a simple tweet but it will give context to your audience when you tell them you’re about to post a flurry of tweets. Another good thing to do is to thread your event tweets so that people can easily find them and follow through with the goings-on. Adding a photo at the beginning or the end of the thread is a nice way to summarize a thread.

Q4: What kind of content should you tweet during a conference?

Variety works well. You can do quotes, photos of slides that jump out at you, video responses and opinions about a presentation, selfies—either solo or with other attendees—threads, and replies to other attendees’ tweets. You can also mix and match, such as posting a few photos and videos in a thread.

As for what type of messages you should share, Madalyn recommended sharing key takeaways you gained from each presentation or session. These can serve as recaps or reminders for you later on, and also as information nuggets for those who wanted to attend but couldn’t. What’s more, if you’re at an event with multiple sessions running simultaneously, your recaps could be valuable to those who were attending another session at the same time.

Q5: How frequently should you tweet from a conference?

There’s no hard limit on how many tweets you can post during a conference or even in a one-hour session. Most people would do 3-5 tweets for an hour-long presentation, but it could be more or less depending on the topic, how interesting it was, and how comfortable you are live-tweeting.

Q6: Share some live tweeting best practices.

Our guest shared some of the most basic things to keep in mind: use the event hashtag for every tweet, make sure you tag the right person in your tweet and prepare templates or designed images if you’re trying to be on brand.

Joana shared some great tips as well. Take a power bank so you don’t run out of charge in the middle of an interesting session, have a plan B in case the wifi doesn’t work or is too slow, and compile your tweets into a Twitter Moment that you can summarize into a blog post afterward.

Q7: How do you optimize your tweets after the event?

Don’t let any tweet disappear into the Twitterverse! As our guest suggested, save tweets so you can re-use them in your marketing. You can bookmark them, compile them into a Twitter Moment, or recap them as a thread.

Our friends from Clover Media also suggested converting tweets into a blog post or posting screenshots of your tweets on other social channels like Instagram and LinkedIn. You could also re-post your media on platforms like Facebook and Instagram where photos and videos perform well.

Q8: What’s your ideal device to live tweet from?

Our guest prefers to have her laptop so she can type faster and have a dashboard showing live tweets as they come in.

However, if she’s on her phone, she’ll post fewer tweets and do more photos and videos which are easier to upload directly from her photo gallery.

Whichever device you use, make the most of the functionality it inherently offers.

Well folks, that’s all from me this week. Thanks a lot for reading through and for more great insights from our chat with Anita, have a look at this Twitter Moment that Joana put together for us. If you think this summary is pretty good, you’ll love the real-time chat. Join us every Thursday at 1pm ET on #TwitterSmarter. We also hang out on Twitter Spaces at 5pm ET to continue our chat. Catch you there!

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About me, Narmadhaa

I write all the things—marketing stuff to pay the bills; haiku and short stories so I feel wholesome. A social media enthusiast, I hang out with the #TwitterSmarter chat crew, and am always happy to take on writing gigs.

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