How To Use Twitter To Network At Events

The beauty with Twitter is how open and accessible it is. But while we’ve grown accustomed to all the facebooking and tweeting, nothing really beats getting together offline and interacting face-to-face.

Events are the perfect place to meet new people and expand your network. Twitter is also great for maintaining relationships over the long term which makes the two complementary to your marketing efforts.

And with nearly one in every five internet users on Twitter, it’s one of the most accessible social networking tools around. Since the majority of users have a public profile, it makes reaching out to people extremely easy. In some ways, Twitter is more effective than email, especially with finding the right person to contact and getting in touch with them.

So when you’re at an offline event – how can you use Twitter to work the room and meet new people? Below you’ll find five simple ideas to help you with your networking.

5 Ways You Can Use Twitter To Network At Events

1. Use The Events Hashtag

An easy way to get on people’s radar is to use the event’s hashtag. Typically major events will have a dedicated hashtag for everyone to use so people can follow all the developments throughout the event.

Last year’s Slush conference had the hashtag, #slush12, Startup Day 2013 had #SUD13 and this year’s The Next Web Conference Europe went with #TNW2013.

Another thing to consider is most events will allow you submit questions through Twitter using the event’s hashtag. And may also have live Twitter stream projected onto a large screen for everyone to see.

2. Tweet Quotes From The Speaker

Since Twitter is a real-time platform, you can use it to live blog from the event. Although it’s no WordPress or Tumblr, Twitter is an easy way to follow news in digestible chunks. Because of its 140 character limit, you’ll have to focus and tweet the essentials.

An easy way to get started with tweeting at your event is to quote the keynote speaker. Depending on the size of the event, there might be more than speaker presenting at the same time – and you can’t be two places at once.

By tweeting quotes, you not only get your name in front of the attendees. But others not attending benefit when you’re sharing insights from each presentation you’re listening to.

3. Tweet Pictures and Videos

There’s no reason why you should be restricted to just tweeting text when Twitter allows you to upload images and record videos through Vine.

Although Vine allows you to only take a six second video clip, it’s still a new feature available to iOS and Android users which hasn’t been fully utilized. A simple way to use Vine is to record a short clip of a presentation, and since it’s owned by Twitter, it’s really easy to share to your Twitter feed.

With images, you can take pictures of the presentations, stands, people you meet and anything cool you come across. Every event is different and you’ll definitely spot something that catches your eye.

4. Add Your Voice To The Keynote

Following up from quoting the speaker, you’ll usually find the Twitter name of the speaker from their presentation slides.

While they won’t be able to reply to you while their up on stage, you can take the time and ask them questions or comment directly through Twitter. This is where Twitter really shines and just shows how accessible everyone is on the social network!

5. Arrange Meetings At The Event

Want to meet potential customers? Simply send out a tweet with the event hashtag about what you want to discuss and how you can help. This can also be used to gather feedback, but the main idea here is to make new connections.

Another thing you can do is browse through the tweets about the event and @ mention them in a tweet, asking them if they want to meet you.

For instance a simple “Hey @JohnDoe, we should get together for a chat. Meet downstairs in 10mins? #eventtag” will do just fine!

However, if you have enough room, you’ll also want to mention why it would be good to meet up in your tweet.

Bonus tip: Bring an iPhone Charger!

Let face it, for 1-2 day conferences people are going to be on their mobile devices using social media, taking pictures and exchanging information throughout the event. In other words you’re going to be suffering from chronic smartphone usage, which leads to the dreaded low-battery notification and the unavoidable dead battery.

What you can expect is that people are going to be desperately looking to charge their mobile devices. So where else are they going to ask for charger? You guessed it, Twitter!

I usually carry several cables and a USB adapter when traveling. So whenever somebody needs to charge their mobile device, I respond through a tweet that I have charger they can borrow. For me this has been the best networking tool for getting to know people. It’s something you can do also – just as long you remember to bring your battery chargers.

So there you have it, 5 easy ways to use Twitter at events. What about you? How have you been using Twitter?

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