Hosting a Twitter Chat

This is a guest post from Vice President of Chapter Development Kion Sanders.

Twitter chats are a great way for you to connect with professionals and others, learn about a different industry and enhance your Twitter visibility. Anyone on Twitter can start a chat. If you decide to do so, here are some recommendations.

  1. Conduct background research on your chat’s niche.
    1. Find out who the current key players are in this field and reach out to them for support.
    2. Think of a creative positioning strategy to help your chat get noticed.
    3. Make sure the time selected works for your desired priority audience
  2. Promote your chat
    1. Share your chat’s information with bloggers, and Facebook and Twitter colleagues.
    2. Send personal e-mails to the key players you want to participate.
    3. Give away something for free. This is always a great incentive to participate 
  3. Provide your participants with meaningful, relevant content
    1. Regardless of how you structure your chat, it’s important that attendees feel they learned something. This is what’s going to keep them coming back for more information.

I reached out to a couple of Twitter chat moderators to provide some chat insight.

Twitter chat moderators David Spinks and Lauren Fernandez of #u30pro, a chat discussing how to bridge the generational gap, demolish stereotypes and break down differences in the professional workplace.

What motivated you to start your Twitter Chat?

Spinks: As Gen-Y professionals ourselves, Lauren and I blogged a lot about issues surrounding young professionals.  We also connected with a lot of young professionals on Twitter.  After seeing how valuable other Twitter chats were, starting one that focused on young professionals seemed like a great idea. Also, we wanted to bridge the gap between older and younger generations which is why the chat is open to everyone.

How has this chat helped you professionally?

Fernandez: Hosting a chat puts us out there on a regular basis, and with the newsletter, fan page and now our new intern, we have definitely grown. I’ve started blogging over at MarketingProfs Daily Fix, and Dave is now contributing over at Mashable. We wouldn’t be where we are with the chat without the awesome community, though – they contribute on a weekly basis and drive us to be even more creative and provide more resources.

As students, it’s imperative we find ways to enhance our personal brand. A presence in or starting a Twitter chat is one of the best ways. Here are a few chats I thought you might be interested in.

  1. PRStudChat, a chat designed to bring together PR students, professionals, and educators for a dynamic conversation about the Public Relations industry. http://bit.ly/7hN9Uh (schedule)
  2. Journchat, a weekly (Mon 7-10pm CST) conversation between journalists, bloggers and public relations folks
  3. U30pro, a weekly (Thurs 8pm EST) conversation discussing how to bridge the generational gap, demolish stereotypes and break down differences in the professional workplace.
  4. Entprchat, a weekly (Tues 8-9pm EST) conversation discussing issues in entertainment and fashion PR and management

What Twitter chats do you recommend following? Have you participated in them before? Please share your experiences.

2 thoughts on “Hosting a Twitter Chat

    • Author gravatar

      Hi Kion! This is very helpful post! One thing that you may want to add to your list is to build a community, similar to what we did with #PRStudChat, on LinkedIn or another platform, so that people can share their ideas about the chat session and even make suggestion on the types of questions they want answered, or what topics they think are the most meaningful. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on the Twitter chat!

    • Author gravatar

      Deirdre,

      Great advice. It is important to build a community. This will allow people to feel like “they’re apart of the team” and will lead to constant participation.

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