Including a Twitter Wall at your next conference can dramatically increase the engagement of your audience.
By opening a social channel you give presenters and attendees new ways to interact and share opinions. This interaction increases conversation, enhances understanding of content and forms relationships that go beyond your event. A Twitter Wall not only increases communication, it extends the reach and visibility of your event.
How do you integrate a big screen Twitter Wall into your next event? It’s simple, just follow these easy steps:
1. Choose a hashtag
Choosing the correct hashtag for your event is vital.
- Keep it short and simple. Abbreviate words so your hashtag is easy to remember and easy to type. Remember, a Tweet can only contain 140 characters (including hashtags).
- Do a search at twitter.com/search to check if your chosen hashtag is currently in use.
- Include the city or year if you have multiple events (e.g.: #MyEvent2014 or #MyEventNYC)
- Use capitalisation to make your hashtag easier to read. (Hashtags are case insensitive so you don’t need to worry if people miss the capitals).
- Hashtags don’t need to be officially created or registered, just start using yours.
2. Promote the activation
Start promoting your hashtag in the days and weeks leading up to your event. Include it on all web, print and digital materials including:
- PowerPoint/Keynote templates
- Your Twitter account
The goal is to get presenters and attendees using the hashtag prior to the event. This will build hype around your event and encourage others to join in.
3. Follow VIPs
VIPs have social credibility and influence that is a great resource to tap into. Identify the VIPs attending your event and engage them early. VIPs can include:
- Twitter users with large follower numbers (and therefore influence)
- CEO/Board of Directors
Once you’ve identified your VIP list you should:
- Follow them on Twitter. They’ll be notified you are following them and will be more likely to begin engaging with you
- Learn their interests
- Start conversations with them to increase excitement
- Feature their Tweets prominently during the event
It can take time to identify VIP usernames and check you have the right person. You can avoid this process by asking for a ‘Twitter Username’ on your conference registration form.
4. Design your wall
Using a tool like Crowd Convergences enables you to customise the design of your Twitter Wall. When designing keep text legibility and event branding in mind:
- Choose colours that match programs, banners etc
- Choose colours that are easy to ready (dark text on light background, light text on dark backgrounds)
- Upload your event logo
Experiment with different looks on your big screen until you find something that fits perfectly.
5. Convert newbies
Despite Twitter’s hundreds of millions of users there are plenty of event attendees that don’t have an account. These people generally don’t know what Twitter is (seriously!) or don’t know how to use it. Help these attendees download and set up Twitter on their mobile device, then help them to send their first ever Tweet using your hashtag.
This technique generates interest, Twitter followers and event buzz that is invaluable. It’s so easy and and yet so often overlooked.
You can go even further and have the Twitter onboarding experience sponsored by an event partner for a win win win!
6. Moderate and talking back
Moderating Tweets is an important aspect of live event Twitter integration. Unfortunately you can’t always trust your audience will post appropriate content so having a filter before it reaches the screen is essential. Using Crowd Convergence gives you complete control over what Tweets you choose to show and when.
Moderation is very powerful but should be used carefully so you don’t change the overall tone of an event. It’s important to present all sides of a conversation and allow honest conversation to take place. Showing a full conversation, including the gritty parts, paints your organisation as open, honest and ready to communicate.
- Filter profanity
- Filter spam
- Filter retweets and off topic conversations
- Reject difficult questions
- Reject opinions because they differ from yours
- Reject open and honest discussion
Make sure you Tweet back to attendees who engage with your hashtag. Social media validation is a huge part of why people Tweet and providing a response, retweet or favourite is positive reinforcement.
Build your own Conference Twitter Wall
Just follow these 6 Simple steps and you’ll have an amazing looking, safe and engaging conference Twitter Wall. Ready to get started? Sign up for a free Crowd Convergence Trial.