Twitter: How to Live Tweet an Event

Have you ever wished you could attend a conference or event, but just couldn’t make it? Are you on Twitter?

If so, you might be thankful for someone who lives tweets the event. Or you might be annoyed if it’s an event you have no interest in.

Either way, you’ll see live tweeting or live blogging for nearly any important event: Apple keynotes, seminars, and many sporting events.

Live tweeting can help you make new contacts, attract followers and forge connections with those you’d otherwise not encounter. You can quickly make a name for yourself if you do it well — providing meaningful content related to the topic at hand, promoting the expertise of speakers and bringing attention to important issues.

It looks simple; just get on Twitter and type, right?

Well, no. It’s not as simple as it seems, and, done poorly, can be more annoying than helpful.

Five Twitter Tips for Events

Each week, I live tweet church, pretty much from the first song through the last Amen. I’d like to think I’ve gotten pretty good at it, so here are a few tips on how to effectively live tweet. Even if it’s not church, I think these three principles still apply.

  1. Recognize that you cannot and will not get every last word. Don’t even try. That’s not the point. Get the salient points, and ideas that your audience will find useful. It’s almost impossible to tweet stories and illustrations, so use those times to rest a bit and absorb the speaker’s points.
  2. Use photos. Even if they aren’t terribly exciting, it gives your audience a peek into what it’s like to be there. Sometimes photos are truly noteworthy, and sometimes they’re just a peek into the environment and a chance to see faces and places.
  3. Listen and interpret. Not every word from every speaker provides value. Your job is to listen carefully and curate what you’re hearing for your audience. It’s tough to pick and choose on the fly, but you’ll get used to it.
  4. Use the hashtag. The hashtag pulls your tweets together with others at the event and makes them searchable. Don’t forget it – it’s important.
  5. Watch and retweet. Always, always follow the hashtag in addition to using it. You’re not tweeting in a vacuum. If you’re at a conference or other event, it’s a great way to identify and retweet others who share your interests. And always respond to anyone who has a question or comment.

Live tweeting is a great way to discover and connect with others with similar interests and to make your name known to others, and to highlight an event and stimulate interest in an important cause.

Try it the next time you’re at a conference, at church, or anywhere else there’s something interesting going on.

Have you live tweeted? Got questions?

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