The Value of Tweeting Events

A list of tips for building a quality business Twitter following that I recently contributed to The CMO Site mentioned the value of being the eyes and ears of your followers. “When you attend a conference, play reporter and tell your followers what you’re witnessing,” I advised. An experience from this morning demonstrates the value of what amounts to sharing notes you would probably take anyway..

I attended a nearby Social Media Breakfast on the subject of content marketing, featuring several respected speakers. I had HootSuite fired up on my laptop and Notepad++ pre-populated with speaker handles and the event hash tag. I posted about 30 comments during the 90-minute session, mostly speaker quotes and summaries of what was being said. Using the #SMB26 hash tag ensured that my tweets would appear in the busy stream of comments from the session.

Within an hour after the event had ended I had 26 new followers. This required almost no work on my part. I would have taken notes anyway, but by adding a hash tag and Twitter usernames I was able to piggyback on other activity going on around the meeting and catch the attention of people monitoring the tweet stream.

Twenty-six new followers is a pretty good week. It’s an awesome day.

A few of notes about tweeting from an event:

Don’t overdo it. People don’t like it when their newsfeed is crammed with messages from one person. A couple of years ago I made the mistake of tweeting rapid-fire updates from a conference at the rate of about one every 15 seconds. Several followers admonished me for this and about a dozen stopped following me entirely.

Think before you send. Quotes that make sense to you as an attendee may baffle someone who lacks context. Set up the quote with background if necessary. For example, Digital Influence Group’s Brian Babineau described how a telecommunications client had made its plans to build new cell towers more real by publishing details on a map. I summarized: “@BrianBab21 Show, don’t tell. Building new cell towers? Photograph, geotag and embed on a Google Map for ppl to see. #SMB26”

Add perspective. Can you append a comment that adds value to a tweeted quote? I try to do that whenever possible: “@cc_chapman Loves #Harley Ridebook. Great example of customer-driven storytelling. #SMB26” or “@cc_chapman ‘You are never your audience’s priority.’ Publishers have to remind themselves of this all the time. #SMB26.”

Include Twitter handles and links whenever possible. Adding a speaker’s handle makes it more likely that the speaker will see your tweet. References to a news story or website should include a link if you have the means to find it. For example, “@jchernov Guy who proposed to GF via infographics may have mortally wounded the medium 🙂 #SMB26”

My entire tweet stream, in chronological order, is below. That was easy.

What’s worked for you when tweeting from events?

Follow #SMB26 for “New Rules of Content Marketing” right now w @cc_chapman @jchernov @BrianBab21 @RachelJOConnell @RobertCollins
@RachelJOConnell “Our motives as marketers are becoming increasingly irrelevant to the buying decision.” #SMB26
@RachelJOConnell Praises Audaciously Eloquent blog: Headlines and photos only; almost no text #SMB26
@RachelJOConnell “We can’t control what ppl say about us, but we can control the experience they have and share.” #SMB26
@RachelJOConnell is a quote machine: “Look for opportunities for other ppl to express your brand.” #SMB26
@BrianBab21 “Days of building a destination and driving people there are over. Spend w/partners on relevant environments.” #SMB26
@BrianBab21 “Content mktg is soft sell. Not ‘do this’ but ‘read this and tell us what you think.'” #SMB26
@BrianBab21 Show, don’t tell. Building new cell towers? Photograph, geotag and embed on a Google Map for ppl to see. #SMB26
Really! Buzzword of the month–>RT @dough: “Infographic” mentioned 2x so far. I don’t have a drink dangit #SMB26
@jchernov Guy who proposed to GF via infographics may have mortally wounded the medium 🙂 #SMB26
@jchernov Infographics are about info, not pictures. Bad ones suffer from lack of data #SMB26
@jchernov Covers 4 kinds of infographics. “State of…” infographics shows snapshots of history to visualize change. #SMB26
@jchernov on 4 kinds of infographics. “Resource” infographics are how-tos. Stuff you stick on the wall. #SMB26
@jchernov on 4 kinds of infographics. “Comparative” contrast two similar themes: FB vs Goog, under-25 vs over-65. #SMB26
@jchernov on 4 kinds of infographics. “Evolutionary” are timelines that illustrate change or motion. #SMB26
@jchernov nails prob w infographics: “Pretty pictures follow if you’re faithful to the data. Reciproal doesn’t work.” #SMB26
Love good ones, hate most I see these days –>RT @dough: @pgillin Oh dear– we jinxed it. “infographics in 15 minutes” #SMB26
@cc_chapman Loves #Harley Ridebook. Great example of customer-driven storytelling. #SMB26
@cc_chapman “You are never your audience’s priority.” Publishers have to remind themselves of this all the time. #SMB26
RT @george_grattan: @cc_chapman Lincoln quote : give me 6 hrs to chop down a tree and I will spend the first 4 sharpening the axe. #smb26
@jchernov quotes Alan Cooper: “No matter how beautiful, how cool your interface, it would be better if there were less of it.” #SMB26
RT @hipharpist: “Speak in Human.” @cc_chapman @thecontentrules #smb26
@jchernov “Ppl who get our content first (subscribers) promote us more actively to their friends.” #SMB26
Audience question: Can you give away too much info and have competitors take advantage of you? Panel unanimous: “No.” #SMB26
@cc_chapman calls Cisco’s @timwasher a “genius.” Tend to agree 🙂 #SMB26
@jchernov has quote of the morning: “A lot of ppl have written a white paper but no one has ever read one.” #SMB26
Thanks to @diginfgrp and @ConstantContact for a great session at #SMB26 this morning. Excellent panelists.
@RobertCollins Key to #SocialMedia success for #nonprofits: “Create a platform for the people you help to tell their stories.” #SMB26


3 thoughts on “The Value of Tweeting Events

  1. I, too, have to watch how much I do this. I love live tweeting an event, because it also serves as my notes and summary of the event – not just for others, but for me. I use a free service call Chirpstory that lets me embed a chunk of tweets on any given item – hashtag, from a person, to a person, etc. Here’s an example of that [I include it not to boost traffic to my own post, but as illustration]. Great tips here, Paul.

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