Live-Tweeting: How Twitter Can Boost Your Business’ Reach

Live-tweeting during events, conferences, and important TV shows

Live-Tweeting events, TV shows and conferences that your audience is already engaging with is like joining their conversation at a party. It gives you a chance to communicate your brand’s opinion and get on people’s radars.

For business-to-business Tweeters, Tweeting statistics and useful nuggets from conference talks using the conference hashtag can allow those who are following at home or who are in different talks to keep up with the conversation. At every conference there is usually a handful of hardcore live Tweeters who Tweet every talk they’re in — some as much as multiple times per minute.

Providing that their Tweets are useful, they’ll usually be able to pick up as many as 25-100 new followers per hour just by being extremely visible — even if they add none of their own personality or opinions.

The secret to maximising the effects of your live Tweeting is to give the Tweets as much context as possible and make sure they work as useful ‘standalone’ snippets. Your goal is to give such useful snippets that your audience Retweets them, for example:

That statistic is definitely a ‘Tweetable’, and Ruth has included the Twitter handle of the speaker too, which is good conference etiquette and increases the likelihood of that person responding or thanking her for the Tweet after their talk.

If you’re live Tweeting and you see something interesting, snap a photo of it and add this to your Tweet. Tweets that include a picture get 150% more Retweets, so whether you’re snapping an interesting conference slide or picture from a TV show, as long as you give context in the text of your Tweet, you should find it gives you a nice bump.

Part of the benefit of Live Tweeting is the relationships that you can build through the shared experience. Run a search for the hashtag on Twitter and keep checking back for new Tweets, particularly those from people that are especially active. Live Tweeters who are getting a lot of Retweets and interactions might be expressing widely-shared views or could have a lot of authority on this topic. They might make good contacts.

Those asking lots of questions might be the ones Live Tweeting for the feeling of involvement and community, and are more likely to respond back if you reach out to them.

If you see questions that you can answer, do so.

If you see insightful Tweets from others, Retweet them. If you find people that could be useful contacts or customers, follow them — they’ll be checking you out when they see the follow notification.

Live-Tweeting During Events

Before we move on, let’s look at a really good example of live event hashtags, and an example of a business that totally bailed on a popular hashtag that went out of control.

First the good example:

@Wordstream (who provide marketing software) wrote a post with their favourite statistics from a bunch of conferences attended by their target audience. This was genius because everyone loves stats, and the post was Tweeted 115 times in three days, but it’s their use of the conference hashtags that takes this Tweet to the Hall of Fame, because it gets them on the radar of attendees for each of these conferences. Then they slapped an attention-grabbing image on, and made it into this book. Truly Ninja.

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When Live-Tweeting Goes Wrong

An example of a live Tweeting opportunity that went awry comes courtesy of London lettings agency @CapitalLiving.

Excited to be featured on a TV documentary, in the run up to the show they continually posted Tweets encouraging their followers to tune in. As soon as ‘How To Live The Chelsea Life’ started however, it became apparent that this was not going to be a good night for the agency.

Their open practice of excluding those tenants that didn’t fit a very tight set of predefined criteria riled many of the watchers, as did the owner’s treatment of a tradesman. Viewers headed straight to Twitter to voice their opinions.

The hashtag #capitalliving began trending and the verdict was unanimous. @WhatLauraLoves wasn’t feeling the love:

@katieTweets26 wrote:

How did @capitalliving respond to this barrage? By making their Facebook and Twitter pages private.

Rather than respond, issue any sort of apology or retraction, they opted for radio silence and people continued bashing them in their absence.

Useful Tools for Live-Tweeting

We at Exposure Ninja love to live-tweet during every event and conference our team attends, and also during popular events that relate to our industry. For example, we’re big fans of the BBC television series The Apprentice.

Each week members of our team sit down to enjoy their favourite show and post regular updates to Twitter on our business account, and also on their personal pages. Not only is it great fun to be a part of the conversation, it’s also been very successful for our making new contacts from outside our own industry and connected us with new partners elsewhere, all for the small price of enjoying a show we were going to watch anyway!

Depending on the event we use a few useful tools that make it easier to follow along and share what’s happening with the hashtag. We use:

  • Twitter Mobile App. Using a smartphone is easier for taking related pictures whilst at events, whilst also being convenient whilst sitting on the sofa at home.
  • Hootsuite. When sitting at our event table or in the audience for a speaker with our laptops out, we use Hootsuite to keep track of our Tweets, Retweets, whilst also keeping a tab open to track the hashtag.
  • TweetBeam. When hosting an event it’s always great to be able to show everyone what’s being said and shared about it via the specified event hashtag. With TweetBeam it’s easy to show on a spare laptop or connected TV the fun and interesting snippets being shared.

In Conclusion

By utilising the popularity of an event and the associated hashtag there’s an opportunity to reach new clients and generate leads in demographics outside of your target market.

Whether at a conference or whilst following a show on TV, be sure to track the related hashtag and share it along with not just Tweets, but interesting soundbites, photos, and informative articles.

Which event will you be live-tweeting next?

You can find more details on how to get the best out of your social media marketing via our new book Profitable Social Media Marketing: How To Grow Your Business

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