twitter bird and hashtag

We hold these great events on marketing for small businesses — I’ve talked about them here before. (Next up: Events in Chicago and Seattle!)

Recently, I created a best practices sheet for employees tweeting on behalf of the company at these events, and it occurred to me this could be helpful for anyone live-tweeting any event.

I wrote the below from the perspective of a business hosting the event, but keep in mind that much of this still applies even if you’re simply attending the event — you’ll just need to tweak the ideas to suit the perspective of an attendee. An example of one attendee’s tweet below!

Live-Tweeting Best Practices

  1. Before you live-tweet familiarize yourself with any key hashtags.
  2. First tweet: Introduce the event and the hashtag for followers on Twitter. Example: We’re about to start our Las Vegas Marketing Success Seminar for #smallbiz! Follow along at #dexmedia.
  3. Introduce the businesses and the individuals involved. This also helps attendees tweeting, so they know who to name-check on Twitter. Examples:
    1. We have an all-star panel in @barrymoltz @heathriel @YahooFaithM @ShavonnahTiera & @FrankGruber. Can’t wait to hear their advice! #dexmedia
    2. We’re about to hear insider #smb marketing tips from @google @yahoo @VegasYP @ROCeteer_Inc & @TechCocktail at our Vegas event! #dexmedia
  4. Do not start a tweet with an @mention because that does not go through your feed for all followers to see. It appears under the “Tweets and Replies” tab instead. Examples:
    1. “@barrymoltz is literally giving out money to our attendees!” In this example, Twitter thinks you’re talking to Barry, not addressing your following at large, so it does not appear in your feed. (And yes, Barry gives out money at our events.)
    2. “. @barrymoltz is literally giving out money to our attendees!” This tweet will appear in your feed because it places a character before the @mention — in this case, a period — which is a common workaround. You can also simply rewrite the tweet so the @mention isn’t the first word in the sentence.
  5. Use the designated hashtag in every tweet.
  6. Don’t use more than two or three hashtags at a time to avoid looking spammy.
  7. No need to hashtag an item that’s already in a sentence, unless you’re using an abbreviation like #smallbiz.
  8. Take photos and tweet them! If the room is very full, a shot of the crowded room would be great. Reaction shots are also good. People sitting and staring ahead at a presentation is less so.
  9. Use quotation marks and a speaker’s Twitter handle if tweeting a direct quote from them.
  10. Statistics are especially good to tweet.
  11. Consider tweeting in the form of a question. Example: Does your #smallbiz website have a clear call to action? #dexmedia
  12. Last tweet: Thank folks for joining and include a call to action. Example: Thanks to those who participated in our event! Follow us on Facebook for the highlights post on the seminar: