Brands, bloggers, and creatives host Twitter chats all the time and many of them include free products, but you have to participate to win. Now, you’re probably wondering “What is a Twitter chat?”, “How do I join?”, or “Why should I join?” All of these are valid questions, and let me be the first to tell you that live Twitter chats are so much fun!
What is a Twitter Chat?
Think of it like an AOL chat room. Basically, a Twitter chat is real-time interactive messaging amongst people from around the world. You will use a specific hashtag (#CNGKwanzaa) on every tweet that is published during the Twitter chat to keep the conversation amongst the participants. Make sense? If not, it is easier to show you than tell you, so let’s get to it…
Get a Twitter Account!
First things first — you need to be on Twitter. If you do not have a Twitter account, visit Twitter.com and create your account. After you’ve created your account, you will be ready to join a Twitter Chat.
How to Join a Twitter Chat
I suggest participating in a Twitter chat from a desktop computer, laptop or tablet. Of course, you can use your phone but it can be hard to keep up with everyone if there are a lot of people in the Twitter chat. So, from your computer (or tablet) go to Tweetchat.com. I personally like the TweetChat service because it creates a virtual “chat room” based on the hashtags you enter; we’ll be using “#CNGKwanzaa”. So, after you’ve signed in and entered the hashtag “#CNGKwanzaa” you will see a dashboard similar to this:
That is the “chat room” for the Twitter chat and all new tweets and updates will automatically refresh in this area. Another cool feature about Tweetchat is that you don’t have to type the Twitter chat hashtag with your all of your updates, it will automatically do it.
Did I lose you?
Remember when I said “you will use a specific hashtag (#CNGKwanzaa) on every tweet that is published during the Twitter chat to keep the conversation amongst the participants“? Well, this software will automatically make sure you don’t have to worry about adding the hashtag.
Your Role in a Twitter Chat
Once the Twitter Chat gets going, the host (in this case me, @CurlyNuGrowth) will ask questions in the question format “Q#: ….” and you response in the answer format “A#: …”. Q stands for Question, and the # will be the number of questions. For example, I could say “Q1: What is Kwanzaa? #CNGKwanzaa” and then next I would say “Q2: How do you celebrate Kwanzaa? #CNGKwanzaa“. Your role in the Twitter Chat is to respond to the questions with the answer format so that everyone knows what you’re talking about no matter when they join the Twitter Chat. Here are sample responses for the questions I just asked, “A1: Kwanzaa is a celebration of African-American Heritage! #CNGKwanzaa” and “A2: I host a family and friends gathering everyday of Kwanzaa. #CNGKwanzaa“.
I hope this quick crash course in Twitter chats was helpful and if you have any other questions, tweet me!