We’ve come a long way from the days of party line telephone calls where many people dialed up the same number to participate in multiple conversations. It was the original virtual get-together.
We have since gained the ability to conduct conference calls for improved inside and outside business communications. Now, we can also develop conversational relationships with prospective customers and colleagues via Twitter’s 140 character interface.
Do you think Twitter chats (or Tweetchats) are a supreme waste of time? Not at all – especially when you’re looking for prospective customers to grow your business. Why? Participating in a Twitter chat is an ideal way to find and engage with new prospects and promote your business. Here are 5 ways to maximize your time on a Twitter Chat:
- Use a software application to follow the chat. Tweetchat and Tweetgrid are both easy to use and help you follow the feed, tweet out comments and see who’s engaging with you – so you can engage back!
- “Lurk” to learn the culture of the chat. Before you chime in, pay attention to how the chat is conducted. If the chat leader invites you to introduce yourself – go ahead. But keep it short. Be ready with your elevator pitch; don’t lead with a sales pitch.
- Be Helpful. If someone tweets a question within the scope of your expertise – answer it. Social sharing is good and typically well-received.
- Be Brief. Concise communication is crucial when confined to 140 characters.
- Follow up. After the chat, find and follow the folks who participated – especially the ones with whom you engaged. Don’t wait for them to follow you.
- Engage! Read the bios of your new contacts – then introduce yourself and ask them a relevant question to start a conversation. “Was this your first time on the chat?” or “How long have you been in business?”
Don’t listen to the naysayers who insist that Twitter is a time-suck with a strictly teen aged audience. I launched my virtual assistance business using Twitter by developing relationships with other small businesses — and building credibility with consistent and helpful engagement.
Do you have a tip or a question about twitter chats? Leave a comment and let’s engage!