Many in recent times are overlooking the value of Twitter, especially in supporting real-time activity. Don't make that mistake... the syndication value of Twitter, and real-time conversation created, can truly enhance your events of all kinds. /Ted
We’ve all been there: The reg page is live, the invites have been sent, and now you’re wondering how to drive more engagement. Are you ready to live tweet your webinar?
There’s no question using Twitter to build interest and engagement before, during, and after your webinar is a good idea. But like most things that sound simple in concept, live tweeting can be tricky (and stressful) in practice. Especially since you don’t want to embarrass yourself or make your company look like a social-media newbie. The shame!
Here’s 20 battle-tested tips that will help you live tweet your webinar like a pro.
Before the webinar
1) Pick a webinar hashtag.
Keep it simple and preferably under 10 characters. This will help you track social interactions for your webinar. Also, decide what other topical hashtags you’ll use to tap into broader audiences you’re interested in.
2) Find the speaker handles.
Got a guest speaker or a couple of panelists on the webinar? Find their Twitter handles in advance. Why deal with the stress of trying to look them up in the heat of the moment?
3) Promote the event on Twitter.
Start banging the drum on Twitter weeks before the event. And then use a “countdown” mindset for the day of the webinar (1 hour, 30 minutes, 5 minutes, starting now, 5 minutes after – not too late to join!). As you get closer to the date of the live webinar, include messaging like “Still time to register!” in your tweets.
Here’s an example from Leadtail client BlueJeans Network, promoting an upcoming webinar on Twitter:
4) Ask for questions in advance.
Let registrants know they can tweet questions to you and your guests in advance of the webinar… since they already know what’ll be talked about. This can help stock the pond before the Q&A section of the webinar.
Here’s a good example from Chisel AI. Notice how they encourage questions by inviting users to “help shape the discussion”:
Just remind everyone to use the webinar hashtag when submitting questions. Pick out the relevant and captivating questions and be sure to present them to the webinar speakers when the time is right.
5) Invite some friends.
Line up a few “friendlies” to be online too, so it doesn’t look like you’re live-tweeting in a vacuum. For instance, ask a few cube mates and maybe your agency to join in the fun. Once the webinar starts, their early tweets can get the party rolling!
6) Get the presentation deck in advance.
Why? Because you’ll want to go through the slides to determine the key points and graphics to highlight during the webinar.
For some webinars, take screenshots of slides in advance. Choose the ones that are most visually interesting with graphics, charts or images. If the presentation is all text and bullets, you may want to suggest to the author that images, graphics, and charts always draw more attention.
Create a folder and label the slides in order (eg. 01_Client_SlideHeadline). This way, as the webinar progresses, you can load up the next slide and text in advance.
7) Script out your tweets.
Yes, you read that right. Script out the tweets you’ll use for the key speaker points so you have them handy to share when the time is right during the webinar. Nothing is harder than writing a bunch of awesome tweets “on the fly.” Ironic, I know.
8) Create graphics before you need them.
Twitter is fast becoming a visual medium. That means you’ll want to include charts and create graphics to showcase compelling sound bites from the presentation. These graphics can be used with your scripted tweets.
Here’s an example from Leadtail client A10 Networks, who included a chart in their live webinar tweet:
9) Target influencers you’d like to engage.
Who would you like to get the attention of with the webinar content? Make a list of Twitter handles for any influencers that are going to get a shout-out or to whom the webinar content is especially relevant. Now you’ll have a chance of engaging them, too!
Note: Read my related post “5 Types of Influencers B2B Marketers Need to Engage Now.”
During the webinar
10) Set up your social command center.
Create one “view” of all the relevant info you’ll need: speaker names, titles, and companies, Twitter handles (@brands, @speakers, @influencers) and hashtags. Get set up to watch for mentions of these Twitter handles and your event hashtag(s).
11) Push out scripted tweets.
Start tweeting, but make sure and wait for the right slides and speaker comments that correspond to your scripted tweets. Just because you know the tweets were written in advance doesn’t mean everyone else has to.
Remember, it’s not the number of tweets that counts, but the quality – always review your tweets for spelling, spacing, handles, hashtags, and links before clicking the “Tweet” button.
12) Get the “friendlies” going.
Your teammates should be jumping in with some early tweets and retweets. This will create webinar chatter to get the ball rolling. It should also pull in others that start to see some activity with the webinar hashtags.
13) Capture “sound bites” along the way.
Pay attention to the webinar dialog to discover those truly unscripted comments that show off the speaker’s personality. And make sure to use quotes and speaker handles to bring the webinar to life for those not attending. If you have multiple speakers — tell tell beforehand that they can tweet and retweet when they’re not presenting!
14) Retweet and engage others.
Keep in mind it’s not just about your tweets. Look for opportunities to retweet, comment on, and engage others along the way, especially influencers, prospects, and customers.
15) Broadcast the Q&As.
Once it’s “question and answer” time, your live-tweeting skills will really be put to the test. You want to be able to tweet out questions, capture compelling speaker answers, insert relevant hashtags, and also look to engage others. Whew!
16) Thank everyone for joining.
Don’t forget to tweet out a big thanks to everyone when the webinar ends. Your tweet should include speaker handles and the webinar hashtag. For extra credit, you may want to share when your next webinar is happening.
Here’s an example from DoDOC, which includes a link to view the webinar recording:
After the webinar
17) Engage relevant tweeters.
Take a look at everyone that participated in live-tweeting the webinar to discover new people to follow, prospects to engage, and customers to thank. And remember to “Like” those “loved the webinar” comments.
18) Create a Twitter Moment from your webinar.
If you’ve gotten pretty good engagement with the webinar (think: 20+ tweets) then you may want to curate some of the best tweets into a Twitter Moment. Twitter’s Help Center provides step-by-step instructions on how to create a Moment.
19) Do shout-outs.
Remember to reference the speakers in your post-webinar tweets. Why not give them a chance to share and help promote the webinar replay, too?
20) Promote the recorded webinar.
Listen to the webinar replay to find additional sound bites, comments, key stats, speaker answers, and images to promote the webinar replay. Then promote away!
Here’s an example from Litmus. Note how they at-mention the two presenters:
Ready for the last piece of advice? Don’t put someone new to Twitter on live tweeting duties (even if they’re using all our tips). You definitely want a Twitter veteran (if not a power-user) to be manning the webinar console. Have fun!