The latest online trend in connecting with like-minded peers is right on Twitter in a “Twitter Chat”!
These chats are hosted by an individual or organization on a particular topic that uses a specific hashtag. We have the tips and tricks you’ll need to successfully attend your next Twitter chat! If you’re new to Twitter, be sure to check out our Twitter 101 post.
LOCATE THE CHAT
First things first, in order to participate you need to find the chat to follow along. The hashtag will usually be in the host’s Tweets since they’ll be promoting it (such as ours: #cuwedtechchat). Once you find it, you can click on the hashtag and a feed will appear showing all Tweets containing that hashtag. If you know the hashtag off the top of your head, you can also search for it by clicking on the magnifying glass . Once that feed appears, you can click on “live” (desktop users ) at the top to follow along in real time and not miss a beat! If you’re using your mobile device , you can click on “all tweets” to follow everything that is said.
USE THAT HASHTAG!
When forming your Tweet to participate in the chat, do not forget to include the hashtag in that Tweet or else it won’t appear in the feed. You can type out your message and include it at the end (just keep in mind that it will use up some of your 140 characters).
Another huge tip is to make sure your account is not on private/protected. Your account needs to be public in order for everyone to see what you’re bringing to the conversation!
To give you an idea on the layout of a Twitter chat, the host will open up with an introduction and ask participants to introduce themselves. They will then have questions posted starting with Q1, Q2, Q3, etc. A tip for replying is to begin your answering Tweet with A1, A2, A3, etc. so the group knows which question you are answering.
Don’t forget to interact with other people participating in the chat as well! You can form new connections and get new insight into the topic, so reply, like, retweet that individual’s Tweet to let them know you appreciate their input (don’t forget the hashtag in that reply either!).
— This story is written by Kali Thiel, director of university communications for Concordia University Wisconsin and Ann Arbor. She may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 262-243-2149.
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