One aspect of social media that brands are trying to tackle is how to humanize their online presence. Twitter chats offer an ideal opportunity to not only put a face to a brand, but also to increase brand awareness and solidify thought leadership in a brand’s industry. For example, our friends over at Buffer are known for their Wednesday #bufferchat in which they invite various companies to discuss a range of social media and startup topics.
In the past few weeks, we’ve started to participate in various Twitter chats: first the #SEMRushchat on social media best practices and then a #bufferchat on transparency. These chats enabled our team to interact directly with potential customers, collaborate with other companies in our vertical, and improve reach and engagement. Twitter chats usually run for an hour and entail a five to six Q&A with introductions, wrap-ups, and an opportunity to have an open social conversation.
Here are five reasons why your company should participate in Twitter chats (plus one reason not to).
1) Engage with existing customers and reach out to new ones. It’s not every day you get to directly engage with your customers on social in a conversation context. Use Twitter chats as an opportunity to get to know some of your more loyal customers and inject some humor whenever you can.
2) Establish your brand as a thought leader in the community. We have received a lot of press about transparency in the past. The Q&A with Buffer enabled us really dive into the topic. We discussed how we define transparency, the pros and cons, and how a company can become more transparent.
We also discussed social media strategy with SEMRush.
3) Spread brand awareness and solidify social media presence. No one likes looking at an inactive (and boring) account. Bring some traffic, activity, and spice up your social media life.
Many companies have been hopping on the Twitter chat bandwagon from Whole Foods’ #WFMDish (where they discuss favorite recipes or other cooking/food-related topics) to biz tips in #LinkedInChat to #edtechchat.
4) Get and give info. The Q and A format enables participants to chime in while commenting on the host/guest’s responses.
5) Drive engagement. Everyone is still trying to figure out this crazy world we call social media. Twitter chats drive engagement, increase reach, and let people know you are more than just a content machine – there is in fact a person behind the handle.
Here are some stats from May 6 when we did the #bufferchat.
We had a 1.4 million mention reach, 400k retweet reach, 276 mentions, and 84 tweets – a lot of eyes on our content and participants in the chat.
These numbers from the one hour chat with Buffer demonstrate how Twitter chats are icing on the social media cake.
- 3083 Tweets
- 386 Contributors
- Total reach: 1,732,909
That brings us to one pitfall of Twitter chats – unfollows. Best practice for Twitter chats is to tweet out a “high tweet volume warning” so that your followers are aware that you will be tweeting out a significant amount in the coming hour.
Are you looking for chats to join? Here’s a list of the hottest Twitter chats. What do you think are the pros and cons of Twitter chats? Is your company planning on participating in Twitter chats?
Updated November 22, 2017.