Want to peek into the future of technology and entertainment?
Thousands of people got to do just that at SHAPE, the AT&T Tech & Entertainment Expo at Warner Bros. Studios.
I was one of them. And I wanted to share the experience. So I live tweeted some of the sound bites I heard from some of the spellbinding speakers. (Here’s where I say that opinions expressed in this blog are my own.)
Live tweeting – or snapping or gramming, depending on the social platform – is something you can do at every event you attend.
Why not share valuable content with your social networks? It’s an important part of any social media savvy strategy for your professional life.
Here’s a roadmap.
BEFORE THE EVENT: Get Ready
Get familiar with the event. Download the event app. Peruse the agenda. Plan how you’ll spend your time.
Learn about the speakers. Read their bios. Check out their Twitter feed or their Instagram presence or their Snap story.
Know the event’s social strategy. See what social networks the event is using and decide which one(s) you’ll use. Check out the event hashtags. Search them and view existing content.
Follow the event’s Twitter handle(s). In this case, @attdeveloper and @attshape had great tweets throughout the event.
Share your plans to attend. Post pre-event content in your social networks. You may discover friends who will also be there and other people you can take the opportunity to meet in person.
AT THE EVENT: Tell a Compelling Story
Curate your feed. Once the event begins, think of it like a story. Consider the story you want to tell and tweet accordingly. Don’t tweet content unrelated to the event until after it’s over.
Pick a good seat. Sit as close to the front and the center as possible. You’ll be able to get better photos that way. Chat with people sitting near you to see what they’re enjoying about the event and how they’re experiencing it.
Capture images. Take pictures of on-screen images before the speakers begin. You’ll have plenty of visual assets to create your story. And you might be able to use them in a collage.
Take pictures during the talk. Capture interesting visuals. Get up-close pictures of the panel and individual speakers. Capture speakers in action, making expansive and dramatic gestures.
Use photos that show people in the best light. Delete unflattering pictures, such as when a speaker’s eyes are closed or they’re in an awkward pose.
Edit photos for lighting and color. Crop them so they’ll show up well in your tweet. This takes a little trial and error. I’m still learning.
Vary the number of photos you include with each tweet. You can include 1, 2 or 4 photos per tweet. And don’t forget that video can accompany a tweet too.
Listen for sound bites. The AT&T SHAPE app had an invaluable section in each presentation to take notes. So I captured sound bites that grabbed me. It was easier to copy and paste them into a tweet as well as synthesize a number of messages into a single tweet.
If a friend asked you for the one thing you learned, or for 3 key takeaways from a talk, what would you say? Use that same line of reasoning for your tweets. Listen for the best content from the speakers and share the most valuable information.
Use the hashtag(s). In every tweet or post, use the event hashtag. That makes your content more discoverable, and therefore more likely to be liked and shared.
Mention people. Give credit to speakers and panelists by mentioning them in tweets and posts. Use their Twitter handle. If they don’t have a handle, use their name with a hashtag, e.g., #FionaCarter, so the content is more discoverable.
Mention organizations. If a company is involved in some way, weave their Twitter handle into the tweet. By mentioning @Tribeca, one of my tweets was retweeted by the organization. That generated 5,000 impressions!
Keep tabs on the event’s Twitter handle and the event hashtag(s). Look at what the primary event handle is tweeting. Search on the hashtag during the event to see what people are sharing. That leads to the next strategy . . .
Engage with related content. Like and retweet content that adds to the story you want to tell. Use the “quote tweet” feature to include your perspective on the original tweet. Here’s one from my colleague Brooke Hanson.
However, if the “quote tweet” feature eliminates the image from the original tweet (i.e., if it becomes text only), consider a straight retweet so you get the benefit of the visual appearing. Why? Tweets with images get 150% more retweets.
Build relationships. Promote the content and ideas of speakers you know or want to get to know by tweeting about them or retweeting their content. Do the same for people attending the event who are sharing their experience of it.
Look at the Twitter feeds of people who followed you as a result of the event. Follow back the people whose content you want to be associated with.
AFTER THE EVENT: Extend the Experience
Tweet a close to your story. What tweet will put the right finish on your event story? It could be the final tweet from the event’s Twitter handle. Or it could be your biggest takeaway from the event.
Analyze your analytics. Check out your Twitter analytics to see which tweets got the most impressions and the most engagement. Create a hypothesis as to why. This will help you create more engaging tweets, whether it’s the next thing you tweet about or the next event you attend.
Extend the experience. What did you learn at the event? What made the biggest impact on you? What will you change or do differently as a result?
Think about ways you could share those learnings with your social networks. Maybe it’s a final tweet or a maybe it’s a blog post that you share in a tweet.
Apply what you learned. Find at least one thing you’ll do differently as a result of attending the event. Commit to putting it into action right away.
For me, it was sharing how I live tweet an event in this post. This caused me to reflect on the process I use and how it’s evolved over the course of several events.
What I thought was simply an intuitive process actually has several concrete steps. It was a surprise to unpack it and think through each step in the process. And analyzing the analytics from live tweeting will help make it better the next time.
How do you live tweet an event?