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Megan Barto

Megan Barto Finance Manager

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How to Live Tweet An Event - In Particular - DSES!

With all the talk about taking notes, and using IFTTT to record your tweets - I'd like to discuss the art of live tweeting.

Live tweeting takes a little bit of preparation (not a ton, just a little).

First - peruse the schedule (which is really first in any conference-going-experience). And then the (semi) hard part - figure out what the speaker's twitter names are (if you need a clue - Monday at 3:25 PM is my session - "Dealership Culture's Effects on Profitability" & my twitter name is @skeetle). But what - Jason Stum & I have made it easy for you -- here is our handy-dandy twitter key!

Second - set up your Social Media Management Tool (I prefer Hootsuite) - I've created a tab called "DSES"1e25839cbf113bb3e6a81534d772b937.jpg?t=1 - and the tabs are as follows:

  1. Search for "#DSES2014" <-- even though this isn't the 'official' hashtag, people are still using it.
  2. "#DSES" <--- the official hashtag
  3. Mentions (for @skeetle) - that way, If when someone responds to one of my tweets, it stays top of mind & I can acknowledge them.
  4. Scheduled Tweets <--- I've scheduled a few (mostly promotion my session & letting people know which sessions I'm attending so they can follow along if they're not in it).
  5. Sent Tweets - so I can keep an eye on that & make sure I haven't mis-spelled anything! :-)
  6. My tweets, retweeted - so I can acknowledge/thank anyone who has RT'd me.

Those are the most important columns. You can add others depending on your personal preferences.

Now onto the actual tweeting - I typically announce which session I'm sitting in, that way if someone wants to follow along with my tweets directly, they can. I then look at my twitter key & see who's speaking (& their employer if you want).  Then type those one (or 2) names & the event hashtag (#DSES) into a tweet. Now STOP.  Hit Ctrl+A (Select All) & and Ctrl+X (Cut) Save this for later. Delete the speaker's name & the hashtag.

Sit back and wait for the speaker to start speaking. When you hear something you want to tweet. Type it & then hit Ctrl + V (Paste) that will put the Speaker's Name (& company if you originally typed that in) and the hashtag into the end of your tweet.  Now hit send!

Some key points when live tweeting

  1. At the start of each day - put out a disclaimer - something like "My stream will be full of #AutoMarketing Goodness - Tweeting the @DrivingSales Executive Summit at @Bellagio in #LasVegas #DSES" <--- I'm going to schedule that right now.
  2. Don't tweet every single point. People see that as "over-tweeting" & will soon tune you out & worse, unfollow you. ::: gasp :::
  3. Acknowledge People Who RT you.
  4. Follow Other Live Tweeters
  5. If someone comments on a tweet you sent - keep the conversation going - that is what Twitter is all about, isn't it?
  6. If a speaker puts up a great slide, grab your phone & take a pic & tweet it. Nothing says you can only use 1 device!
  7. Remember who you're tweeting to - most of the attendees will know what basic automotive industry terms are (this IS DrivingSales after all) - so save time & use abbreviations that we all know, or don't feel the need to explain basic industry specific terms. You do only have a limited number of characters after all!
  8. The event is about the speakers, but it's also about the attendees! If an attendee asks a GREAT question in a session or makes a good point, tweet it!
  9. If you feel like a session doesn't have anything for you to tweet - DON'T TWEET - make sure there's value in what you're tweeting good content!

If you've set up IFTTT (link at the top of this post) then you can go back and review your notes. It will be easy to tell who's speaking since you've put their name into every single tweet during their session. Download your spreadsheet made using IFTTT and use Find & Replace - replace their twitter name with their real name - then you can share them with your team!

This may seem like a lot, but if you set up things correctly in your social media management software, you likely won't miss much (if anything at all) as far as RT's or mentions go. It's easy to go back and add your followers later.

Most importantly - have fun & try to learn something!

Dennis Wagner
Well done, Megan!
Jason Stum
Great stuff Megan! Looking forward to reuniting with my #twitterrow tweeps this weekend! :)
Megan Barto
Thanks guys! I look forward to seeing everyone this weekend & I look forward to the tweets of the sessions I'm not in! :-)
Thomas Muellner
Wowza, this Twitter key is incredibly helpful - so awesome of you to take the time to put it together for everyone! Thanks, Megan!
Megan Barto
You are quite welcome! I always find it easier to have a key like that when going to an event. And I figured that if I was going to put it together anyway, I may as well share it!

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