Communication is the basis of human relationships, is it not? Social media, in a very broad sense, is one example of how we are constantly creating new and innovative ways to facilitate conversation. One of our current favorite trends in online communication is Twitter chat. Twitter chat is one more reason why businesses should board the Twitter train.
Why should businesses tweet?
- 30% of brands experience increased customer loyalty after establishing a social media presence. (HubSpot)
- 64% of users are more likely to buy from brands they follow on Twitter. (KISSmetrics)
What is Twitter Chat?
For those of you who are unfamiliar with Twitter chat (also called Tweet chat) and how it works, not to worry: it is quite simple in nature. Twitter itself is often used for sharing information, be it personal, business, or news-related. But there are also an increasing number of members using Twitter chat to hold sustained in-depth conversations on a regular basis. These conversations are centered around a specific theme or idea, and there is generally one host who asks questions to the participants. To isolate a single Twitter chat, a hashtag (#topic) is used; if you enter the hashtag in the search bar on Twitter, all of the tweets using it will come up in chronological order.
Once you find a Twitter chat that you are interested in, you will want to notify your followers of the high volume of tweets you are about to produce. When the Twitter chat begins, you will probably see an introductory tweet, and then the questions will begin. These are marked (Q1, Q2, Q3…) to easily identify them. To respond to a question, simply put “A” and the coordinating number of the question in front of your answer.
Nicole Miller, a “Community Champion” for Buffer describes Twitter Chat:
“Imagine a business networking event — but without a dress code and with a keyboard instead of a bar. The same social customs apply — courtesy and respect — and it’s a great way to meet new people with similar interests.”
Why we love it.
At Jemully Media, we are pretty crazy about Twitter Chat. This form of communication makes meeting and networking with professionals across the globe simple and instant. It is such a valuable tool for sharing ideas, and it’s also a great way to be heard.
Twitter chats tend to consist of five to seven questions, but the conversation does not have to end once the chat is over; continuing to talk with the other chat members afterwards is not only common, but highly encouraged. And it’s so easy! There’s no business card to hold on to, and no name to try to remember — all you need is a Twitter handle.
Also, if you are unable to make it to a Twitter chat that you had planned on joining, you can usually find the full discussion a day or so later on Storify. How fantastic is that?
Many thanks, IABC.
One of our favorite Twitter chats to take part in is the weekly #CommChat hosted by IABC, or the International Association of Business Communicators. Established in 1970, the IABC works to facilitate networking and career development in over 70 countries.
Most Wednesdays at 11 am (CST), you can find us and many other professionals holding amicable dialogues and sharing ideas and experiences. What we didn’t expect out of these Twitter chat encounters was to be mentioned in IABC’s Communication World Magazine Blog.
In one blog post about crisis communication, IABC quoted us a few times saying:
More and more, news stations are going to social media to see responses. Your [social media] profiles/blog posts are viewed as the digital warning system. Many check profiles for crisis info!
Jemully Media summed up social media nicely when they said: Social media has created a harsh, make-or-break environment for handling a crisis situation.
And in a later blog post about CSR, IABC recapped the conversation about authenticity in CSR, and whether or not it should be mandated, including our final point:
“Without a sound, quality product, CSR is just background noise. CSR is a part of the puzzle.” –Jemully Media
Read about the CSR convo here.
We are incredibly flattered to be recognized by such a highly-regarded association, and we are also excited to see that our contributions to the Twitter chats are valued by others. The digital marketing industry is exciting and revolutionary, but that also means it is competitive. Networking and sharing ideas are certainly two of the chief benefits from taking part in Twitter chats like #CommChat by IABC, but any publicity or recognition that results is an unexpected bonus!