Have you ever joined a Twitter chat before? If you haven’t, we’d have to say you’re missing out on a huge opportunity to make connections online.
As a Social Media Specialist for Express Writers, I join a lot of Twitter chats each week. They’re a fantastic way to meet new people and build awareness for our brand.
We also run our own weekly Twitter chat, #ContentWritingChat, which is pretty awesome if I do say so myself.
If you haven’t joined a chat for yourself, you may be wondering what all the fuss is about. In fact, we often get people asking us how to join chats, so you may be having the same questions. Because we want to see more of you taking advantage of Twitter chats (and hopefully joining our own), I’ve put together a guide to make it all a little easier.
Why Twitter Chats Are a Huge Opportunity for Your Brand
If you’re not convinced Twitter chats are a social media must, we’re sharing the top reasons why you should join them:
1. They help you make connections.
Twitter chats take the awkwardness out of approaching someone online. They make it perfectly acceptable to tweet a stranger out of the blue. If you’ve ever been afraid to reach out to someone via social media, participating in Twitter chats is a great way to put those worries behind you.
In fact, you’re encouraged to respond to others during chats, which is why it’s so easy to make connections. Think of it like a networking event, except it’s virtual and held over Twitter. The best thing about it is that those connections you make during chats could turn into followers. Those followers can turn into blog readers, which may turn into paying clients and customers if your play your cards right. If you could meet a potential client or customer through a Twitter chat, why wouldn’t you want to join?
2. You get to share your expertise.
Twitter chats are a great place to share your knowledge and provide value to your current audience and others. Focus on being of service when you join Twitter chats. Share your answers to the questions being asked and people will take notice if you provide top-notch advice. Be on the lookout for questions other participants may have and answer them if you can. When you provide value, people will be interested in you and your brand.
3. They’re a great place to learn.
— David Pepper (@thedavepepper) July 19, 2016
David said it best – Twitter chats are an amazing place to learn!
One of the best compliments we hear all the time about our own chat, #ContentWritingChat, is how valuable it is. Every week we have participants tell us how much they love the chat and that they learn a lot during the hour.
It’s my personal opinion that the best Twitter chats are the ones with a thriving community and that teach you something. When you can walk away from a Twitter chat with at least one new piece of knowledge, I’d say that’s a win.
How to Join a Twitter Chat
Are you ready to join your first Twitter chat, but aren’t sure how? There’s no need to worry. All you have to do is follow these tips and you’ll have a successful first chat.
1. Do a search online for a Twitter chat in your niche.
If you’re using Twitter chats as a way to grow your brand, you want to be strategic about the ones you join. If you join any random chat you come across, you aren’t likely to attract the followers you’re looking for. Instead, do a search online for Twitter chats in your specific niche. Figure out which chats your audience is likely participating in. Julia has a list on Social Media Examiner, and Madalyn Sklar has a great list on her blog. Keep reading for our favorite top 8!
There are a ton of chats out there, so you’re sure to find one for what you do. And if you don’t? Start one yourself!
2. Get acquainted with the host.
Before you join a new chat, it’s a good idea to get acquainted with the host if you aren’t already. Each Twitter chat has a host, whether it’s an individual or a brand. The host is the one who posts the questions and keeps the conversation moving. See what the host is all about by checking out their website, Twitter profile, and even scrolling through tweets from a previous chat. It’ll give you an idea of what the chat will be like.
3. Join in!
Once you’ve chosen the right chat, all you have to do is join in. To do this, log onto Twitter during the time of the chat and search for the chat’s hashtag. Most chats have a set amount of questions that are asked during the hour, but some are a free chat.
To do a great job as a chat participant, keep these four tips in mind:
1.) Label your answers with A1, A2, etc. This rule is pretty standard for all Twitter chats. The reason it’s a good idea to stick with this format is that it helps keep the chats organized. People can easily find your answer to a particular question.
2.) Engage with others. Once you’re in the chat, don’t just post your answers and ignore others. Make an effort to interact with other chat participants. Reply to their answers and share your opinions. You can even ask questions to take the conversation further.
3.) No self-promotion. I’m sure there are some people who won’t agree with this rule, but I think it’s best not to step on the toes of the chat’s host. Don’t self-promote in someone else’s chat. You wouldn’t want someone intruding on your space, would you?
4.) Follow any rules the chat may have. Some chats have set house rules they expect participants to follow. If you join a chat that has rules, please be respectful of them.
— Express Writers (@ExpWriters) September 20, 2016
For example, we have a few rules for our chat, above.
Now for the fun part…our favorite top Twitter chats!
8 of Our Favorite Twitter Chats
1. #TwitterSmarter, hosted by @MadalynSklar
Every Thursday at 12 PM Central, head over to #TwitterSmarter with Madalyn Sklar. Madalyn was inspired to start her very own Twitter chat because of her podcast with the same name. We’ve been fortunate to have her as a guest on #ContentWritingChat and Write Podcast. Our CEO, Julia McCoy, has also guest hosted #TwitterSmarter! We love this chat because of its thriving community and the fact that each chat is jam-packed with value.
2. #bufferchat, hosted by @buffer
We’re pretty open about our love for Buffer here at Express Writers. It’s a tool we rely on every single day. It should come as no surprise that their Twitter chat is one of our favorites. The topics range from social media, business, and more. You can join the conversation every Wednesday at 11 AM Central.
3. #semrushchat, hosted by @semrush
Do you love to chat SEO, digital marketing, and everything in between? #semrushchat would be perfect for you! You can join our friends at SEMrush every Wednesday at 10 AM Central.
4. #HootChat, hosted by @hootsuite
Are you looking for something to do on Thursday at 2 PM Central? Head over to Twitter for #HootChat! This chat is run by the team behind Hootsuite and they’ve cultivated a lively community that joins each and every week. The chat topics range from social media and business topics, which are always full of value.
5. #SproutChat, hosted by @SproutSocial
SproutSocial is the brand behind the great community that makes up #SproutChat. However, the face of the chat is their Community Outreach Manager, Sarah Nagel, who has even guest hosted #ContentWritingChat. Be sure to check them out every Wednesday at 2 PM Central.
6. #CMWorld, hosted by @CMIContent
If you’re a content marketing expert or want to learn more about it, #CMWorld should be your go-to chat! It takes place every Tuesday at 11 AM Central and always features knowledgeable guests and actionable advice you can put to use for your brand.
7. #ContentChat, hosted by @SFerika
Want another Twitter chat that’s focused on the value of great content? Join Erika Heald for #contentchat on Monday at 2 PM Central. You’re sure to find an awesome crowd for this weekly chat.
8. #Luv4Social, hosted by @Luv4Social
If social media and marketing happen to be your jam, you won’t want to miss #Luv4Social Thursdays at 1 PM Central. The team behind this brand puts together a fun chat every week that always sparks an interesting conversation. Check it out if you want to learn how to step-up your presence on social media.
Join us for #ContentWritingChat Tuesdays at 10 AM CST!
While you’re adding these amazing chats to your weekly schedule, we have one more you won’t want to miss – our own!
You can join us each and every Tuesday at 10 AM Central for #ContentWritingChat, hosted by our account @ExpWriters. We talk about everything from copywriting to content marketing, SEO, social media, and more. Make sure you join us – we’d love to see you!
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