Why Twitterchats Are Worth An Hour Of Your Time

I have to be honest: There was a time when I couldn’t understand the appeal of Twitterchats. I thought, “I’m too busy, I don’t have time” or “What would I contribute?” or “What could I gain from an hour-long nonstop Twitter stream of opinions?”

And then everything changed.

A few years ago, I participated in a #cmgrchat, a Twitterchat led by Jenn Pedde at The Community Manager. I thoroughly enjoyed it, and it wasn’t the chaotic stream of random thoughts or multiple conversations that I imagined. The questions were thought-provoking, and even better – the answers and conversations were insightful. I was officially a convert!

These days, I attend Twitterchats regularly. Why?  I have a few reasons:

To Learn

The initial reason I joined Twitter was to learn. It’s a fantastic platform for sharing content, no matter the subject. Articles, blog posts, images, infographics, lists – the content is never-ending (literally!). However, a Twitterchat provides an opportunity to learn from individuals in real-time. This means conversation, asking follow-up questions, and comparing experiences. You have the opportunity to learn from individuals who work or play in the same arena, and have different (and possibly much more!) experience, such as Madalyn Sklar‘s #TwitterSmarter. It’s like attending a virtual mini-conference every week!

Twitterchat conference quote

Increase Your Community: Quantity AND Quality

Nearly every single time I participate in a Twitterchat, I gain a few followers. Now, as you know, I don’t really care about increasing my Follower count. What I DO care about is connecting with people who enjoy sharing and conversation, and that’s what happens at Twitterchats. I have found that the individuals I meet at Twitterchats are people who continue to interact long after the chat concludes. Show them some love by following back and retweeting their posts!

Connect With Potential Clients

Whether you’re an entrepreneur, customer service rep, salesperson, artist, or freelancer, participating in a Twitterchat can be a connector to someone who needs your services! Answering questions and offering tips is a great way to establish authority and create a face for your business. Live conversation will make much more of an impact on potential customers than simply visiting your website or reading your timeline.

Twitterchat people quote

Offer Your Expertise And Create A Voice

Everyone has something to offer – even if it’s a small bit of information or experience. Perhaps you’ve had a unique interaction with a customer, a successful experience with a new client, or you managed a profitable project. Twitterchats allow you to share your insight with a worldwide community of people in your field. Sharing specific tips, resources, and experiences in a Twitterchat will help you stand out in your field. Show that you’re helpful, friendly, and honest – this will make a lasting impression! Note: Stay mindful! Don’t hijack the chat with links, or discount others’ contributions. Remember that it’s a conversation, and not a megaphone.

Gather Opinions

In one short Twitterchat hour, you’ll hear more tidbits of knowledge, opinions, and points of view than combing through posts or articles. If you’re curious about a micro-topic, you’ll encounter people with varying levels of experience, from beginners to gurus. Influencers and novices alike have valuable viewpoints to share. Doing research? Writing an article? Collecting insight for your next project? Twitterchats are quick way to poll and record ideas and experiences.

Make New Friends

Twitterchat real life conversation

This may sound a bit simplistic, but Twitterchats can lead to some terrific friendships! Because of the informal and conversational nature, there’s space for deeper and more meaningful connections. Treat it like a real-life encounter – talk about where you’re from, a challenge you’ve recently faced, or a tool you benefit from, and don’t forget to listen. Engage! You’ll find you’ve opened a door to new friends!  For example, I’ve met a bunch of people whom I consider friends at Buffer‘s #bufferchat.  There are a lot of open and friendly folks there!

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Why do you enjoy participating in Twitterchats? What’s your favorite reason for joining? How have you benefited from engaging?

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Please Don’t Follow Me On Twitter

Please don’t follow me on Twitter.

I know, I know, a little strange. In a world of “Follow me on Twitter!” and “Like me on Facebook” and “Turn on your Instagram notifications,” I probably sound like a crazy fool asking you not to follow me.

Dont Follow Me On Twitter

But hear me out.

I’m not on Twitter to gain followers. I didn’t start my Twitter account to gain popularity. I don’t have a Follower count goal in mind, and I don’t celebrate the milestones.

So why do I post several times a day, follow other accounts, participate in Tweetchats, and proclaim Twitter as my favorite social media platform? To connect.   I would rather have connections, interactions, and conversations than I would gain followers.  So instead, come say hello, and introduce yourself!

Follow Me On Twitter Call Out

I’m On Twitter To Connect

I take joy in connecting with people. Whether it be on a personal level (“You live in Colorado? So did I for a few years!”) or a professional level (“I learned a lot from your article on Google Analytics!”), I have found Twitter to be the best social platform for meeting new people. Twitter is an environment of “open-door policy” – dropping in and introducing yourself is not only acceptable, it’s also encouraged!

Connecting on Twitter
I met @abcpanotary at a #bufferchat, and reached out to say hello! Hey there, Andrew!

Have you participated in a TweetChat? If not, I highly recommend finding one (or more!) that interests you – here’s my list of my favorite Tweetchats. I work from home, and connecting with people on Twitter is a nice break from the isolation of remote working! I get a little twinge of excitement when I see my Notifications.

I’m On Twitter To Learn

I have discovered SO many incredibly helpful resources on Twitter. I follow many people in my field that I admire – community managers, customer service experts, digital marketers, freelance professionals, etc. But I don’t stop there. I also follow food bloggers, fitness experts, photographers, seamstresses, friends, comedians, and just regular folks who write cool tweets! I want to learn from anyone who’s passionate and good at what they do, and Twitter is a terrific arena for that.

Learning On Twitter
If you’re a blogger, this is a great article by @KWalshPhillips!

With platforms like Twitter, we’re no longer limited by physical proximity. We can have conversations with people all over the world, and gain insight that we may not otherwise have access to. If you’re open to a wide array of connections, you have access to so much more perspective, wisdom, and information. It’s incredible!  If you have a helpful article, please send it to me or post it in the comments!  I’m eager to absorb more information, and share it.

I’m On Twitter To Share

I’m not an expert, guru, maven, rock star, or champion. I’m not special – I know a zillion people who do what I do – and I don’t call myself such. But here’s what I can say about myself: I work hard, I love to learn, and I long to put my passion and experience of helping people online to good use.

Sharing on Twitter
An article I shared on the power of empathy!

I share my experiences (hence, this blog!) to reflect on what I’ve done, share what I know, and hopefully gain feedback so that I can continue to grow. If my insight can help someone, fantastic!

I’m On Twitter To Get Inspired (And To Inspire)

From inspirational quotes to fun facts to baby animal pics to helpful tidbits to valuable advice, my Twitter feed is an invaluable source of inspiration. Thank you, Twitter community, for providing that! Sometimes it’s within 140 characters, and sometimes it’s an article I have to save for later.

Inspire on Twitter
A little Twitter inspiration from @brianmawdsley.

But I’ve found that people who want to be of value are the most inspirational people you’ll encounter. Hopefully I provide that as well on occasion!

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That’s NOT to say I don’t keep a careful eye on my analytics. Don’t get me wrong – I’m a data nerd who loves to see what’s happening with each tweet, and what makes people tick. Yep, I use hashtags and images to reach a broader audience. Yes, I love seeing Likes, Retweets, and even the Follower metrics increase. And yes, I use the data to write and schedule future tweets. But I use the data to achieve my ultimate goals – to connect with more people around the globe, learn from as many awesome folks as possible, and to start and continue as many conversations as time allows.  So come say hello, and let’s connect!

Why are you on Twitter?