Twitter Chit-Chat

Twitter is used for a number of reasons today. From advertising to socializing with friends and famly, twitter has topped the social media charts .

One of the many avenues of Twitter include twitter chats. And I have to admit, I wasn’t aware of what a twitter chat was as of recent nor had I ever had the desire to participate in one. How would this benefit me?

PR chats on Twitter are a helpful way to connect and communicate with PR specialists from all around the world, to build relationships and personal network, to meet new interesting people and to learn the current tendencies in the field.

I decided to participate in the PR Chat #PRStudChat, which is a once a month conversation between public relations students, educators and professionals.

Moderator Deirdre Breakenridge (@dbreakenridge) and host Valerie Simon (@valeriesimon) bring present and future PR industry leaders together for a lively discussion once a month on twitter to discussion the Public Relations industry and the changing landscape.

Since I had never particpated in a twitter chat before, I did some brief research on what to expect from it. Here is a glimpse at a few tips in case you are about to embark on your first twitter chat as well via Valarie Simon:

Before the chat

  • Join the #PRStudChat LinkedIn Group The group has been set up to anchor participants. Get to know the other members that will be attending the chat. Feel free to “message” them through the group, to let them know you are looking forward to hearing from them. Take an active role in the group by posting disucssion topics or adding your comments to current discussions. And be sure to start following those members you find interesting, Remember, participants won’t be able to DM you if you are not following.
  • Follow the hashtag in advance of the chat, so that you can get to know who is coming (you can “follow” the hashtag by either searching for #PRStudchat or setting up a column inTweetDeck)
  • Tweet with the hashtag in advance. Let everyone know you will be attending. Tell them something about yourself and what you hope to gain from the conversation
  • Encourage other PR Students and professionals to join in. The quality of the dialog is dependent on the participants, and you can help by referring those you respect.
  • “Watch” other chats. If this is your first Twitter chat and you are curious to “watch” a chat before jumping in, you may want to check out #journchat, a weekly discussion between PR professionals and journalists (Monday evenings 8pm EST) or #PR20chat a weekly discussion about PR 2.0 and the future of the PR industry (Wednesday evenings 8pm EST)

During the chat

  • Log on to Tweetchat.com or Tweetgrid.com and use the hashtag #PRStudchat. This will allow you to participate in the conversation real time, without the distractions of tweets from those not participating in the chat
  • It’ okay to talk. Please jump in and voice your questions, comments and advice. Discussion and debate are encouraged, but please be respectful so that we can maintain an environment where everyone is comfortable asking questions.
  • It’s okay to listen. RT comments you find particularly valuable, to help assure that they do not get lost in a fast paced conversation.
  • Stay on topic. If you want to discuss something off topic with a participant, drop the hashtag .

After the chat

  • Consider and continue the conversation. Blog about the chat and your experience. Take a moment to review the conversation (rough transcripts can be made athttp://wthashtag.com/Prstudchat and a clean summary of the event will be available shortly after here.  Continue to use the hashtag.
  • Build relationships with new tweeps you hope to learn more from; Follow their blogs and tweets, Check out their profiles and websites. Continue to use the LinkedIn Group to learn about future chats and follow up to the conversation. Once you have built an individual relationship with other members, send a personal invitation to them to join your LinkedIn network.
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