I was reading over Mack Collier’s Five ways to work Twitter Chats for Businesses when I realized that there was more than one reason for someone like me to get involved in Twitter chats. Especially because in the more than 600 Twitter Chats, there’s clearly something for everyone. But in particular, if you’re an individual trying to find work, a sole proprietor, actor or actress, or even a small business owner, there’s as many reasons to work a chat as there are for businesses.
1. NETWORK. This might be the most important thing you do in Twitter chats. In a chat, you can net advice from others on how to approach gigs or job hunting, or get someone with connections to help or something you want, such as a new position somewhere. You can find a guy who knows a girl who knows a guy who knows a robot with a job. Or at the least, someone you can call a new friend on these Internets.
Follow the people you consider the most knowledgeable or the most interesting in the chat. In fact, you can create a Twitter List on your account that lists some of your favorite people to check out on the chat. Everyone benefits.
2. Advise - If you have experience in a certain area, such as method acting or jellyfish cooking, what better way to employ it then to give advice during a Twitter chat. Note that some chats are heavily moderated and frown upon you interrupting the host/guest host, so your best bet is to backchannel the person you’re giving advice to (Meaning you DON’T include the hashtag.) This goes double if you want to link the person to a blog article or website you made about the topic.
3. Guest host - If you’re an expert in a topic (Though I am loathe to say the term,) you can ask the Twitter Chat host if you could guest-host a chat. You can ask questions of the community, or have the chat host ask you questions you answer. Don’t forget to have an open forum where you openly interact with others as well.
Obviously, you’ll need a little bit of clout (Not Klout, although that helps too) in your industry already before you’ll be invited to participate by chat hosts. However, you can always ask first. Most hosts are open to co-hosting with someone in the field.
4. Find and learn about influential figures – When I first started out in Social Media and returned to blogging after grad school, I knew NOTHING about who was who, except for some people like Darren Rowse, Robert Scoble and Chris Brogan. Twitter chats allowed me to pinpoint major players in that business so I can interact with them and learn from them as well, and you can do the same for your industry.
Most of the time, the figures will be co-hosting a chat, but there are also major players who also drop into chats as normal people as well. Just remember to use common sense; don’t harass or annoy them, or beg them to follow you.
Honestly, there’s plenty of reasons to join a Twitter Chat and become a regular. You’ll catch the eye of many figures in the area, and people will start looking to you for advice as well. Alternatively, what better way to learn then from the hive mind?
- 4 Accolades of Twitter Chat (seosmarty.com)
- Ready for a Tweet Chat? 5 Tips on How to Join the Conversation (community.constantcontact.com)