Each social media platform has its own “personality” – Twitter is the Chatty Cathy of social media. A fast-paced world where users are (in 140 characters or less) constantly buzzing about current events and trends. It can be hard to hone in on one topic with an ever-changing feed.
Enter Twitter chats.
Erase your familiarity with any past “chatrooms” you may have partaken in (ex-AOL users, you know what I mean). Twitter chats happen at a specified time (typically an hour in length) where likeminded users gather to talk about a particular, usually predetermined topic. Each chat has its own specified hashtag so that its members can keep tabs on the conversation. For example, Mainstreethost’s own Twitter chat bears the hashtag #uxtalk (shameless self-promotion), where we discuss topics surrounding user experience (UX).
If you’ve never joined a Twitter chat before, you can follow along on TweetDeck (a fantastic tool for managing accounts and monitoring information/activity on Twitter) or use a simple application like TweetChat by signing in with your Twitter account, entering the chat hashtag and tweeting away!
To make it easy to choose a chat to join, our fantastic in-house designer, Kathryn Wheeler, compiled a list of 36 of the Best Twitter Chats on Marketing. Save the infographic to refer back to and try a few chats with topics that interest you and fit into your schedule.
(Updated: November 4, 2014)
So why join a Twitter chat? Here are six irrefutable reasons that prove they’re worth your time:
1.) To Learn
Gain insights and opinions from other passionate people in a Twitter chat. Folks flock to Twitter to hear and be heard. Professionals in every industry share their learnings and learn from each other. When you join a Twitter chat you can sit back and take notes or join in and participate, but either way you’re sure to walk away having learned something new.
2.) To Ask Your Own Questions
Questions are an important part of learning. If you run a business, it might be difficult for you to stay on top of the ever-evolving marketing industry, yet I’m sure you have questions on how to best market your business. Get those questions answered for free by professionals who do it for a living!
3.) Stay up to Date On…Just About Anything
If you’re chatting with people on Twitter, you’re getting information in real-time. You can join a chat to talk about social media marketing, blogging, content marketing trends, creative inspiration, you name it – and receive some of the most current information out there. (Note: Don’t believe everything you read in a Twitter chat.)
If you’re joining a chat to grow as a businessperson, chances are you’ll be talking about your business. You’ll almost certainly be able to find other users in your industry and make valuable connections with them. It’s an easy way to get word out about your business, while potentially opening up new opportunities for it, too.
5.) Filter out the Noise
As I said, there is a lot of noise on Twitter. Joining a Twitter chat will (mostly) streamline the conversation to include one general topic. While some heavily populated chats will still be extremely fast-paced, you’ll be able to refer back to the question being addressed and throw your two cents in, or reply to an intriguing tweet.
6.) Become a Thought Leader
As we mentioned, you can join a Twitter chat to get your own questions about a topic answered, but you can also join a chat to share all the knowledge you’ve gained along the way! As a business owner, new or old, you’ve been on quite a ride so far. It’s a large and admirable feat to bring a passion of yours to life and share it with the world, and it definitely comes with a learning process. Share your experiences and advice with others and become an understood authority in your industry, which just so happens to look stellar for your business!
Okay, one more: To have fun! I know it’s corny, but it’s true. Spending an hour to relax, filter out the social noise, learn about what interests you, get questions answered, get updated on topics and trends, meet likeminded individuals, and have your voice heard sounds pretty fun, right? Take it from me – it definitely is!
And if you’re free every other Tuesday from 4 – 5PM EST, we would love to meet you in our UX-focused Twitter chat, #uxtalk!
(Haven’t hopped aboard the Twitter bandwagon just yet? I would suggest bookmarking this post and checking out our Guide to Social Media: Twitter SlideShare where you’ll learn how to set up your Twitter, get started and become familiarized with Twitter features and lingo. Once you’re all set up, come back to this post to start your Twitter chat adventures!)