Tweet Tweet! 5 Twitter tips for conference presenters

The Tweet Tweet posts are a four part series of articles that provides tips about live conference tweeting as a method of sharing information in the alcohol and other drugs sector.

This third instalment in the Tweet Tweet series, explores how conference presenters can make their presentations Twittter friendly, ensuring that people live tweeting from an alcohol and other drugs conference can get (and share) the most out of your conference presentation.

1. Tell delegates your Twitter handle

Let conference delegates know who you are and what you will be tweeting about via the conference hashtag leading up to your presentation.

Example tweet:

If you are interested in AOD tweeting come check out @stonetree_aus presenting about live conference tweeting after lunch #AODconf

By doing this you provide any potential live tweeters in your audience with your Twitter handle up front enabling them to use this in their subsequent tweets.

Example tweet:

According to @stonetree_aus live tweeting conferences improves information sharing #AODconf

Telling conference delegates your Twitter handle also allows both live tweeters and people following the conference hashtag who are not in attendance at the conference, to ask you questions via Twitter.

2. Be recognisable

If you are using a personal Twitter account while ate the conference, ensure that you use a photograph of yourself as your Twitter avatar.  This enables people to know who you are and can seek you out after your presentation to discuss your topic further in person.

If you are utilising an organisational account to tweet from the conference then it may not be appropriate to replace the organisatianal logo with a photograph of yourself!  In this instance you may want to post a picture of yourself attached to your tweet letting people know what you will be presenting about.

3. Be visual

A picture can be worth a thousand words and since characters are at such a premium in a Twitter post, being mindful of visual presentation is even more important when trying to tailor a presentation to be Twitter friendly.

Most people live tweeting from a conference will be using a mobile device like a tablet or smartphone.  By using strong visual references that convey key points of your presentation you enable audience members a photographic opportunity that can carry a lot of information.  Simple infographics or a nice clean slide with a key quote are often favourites.

Conference tweet

Infographic used in presentation at the HIT Hot Topics conference, Liverpool 2012

4.  Use content curation to support your presentation

Are their key resources that you have drawn from to inform your presentation?  Are their resources that you advocate people should read/view in regard to the topic that you’re presenting about? A little extra preparation can mean that your audience can quickly and easily access these resources and convey them to their Twitter audience.  By utilising a curation tool like Scoop.it or even a blogging tool like Tumblr or WordPress you can catalogue any online resources that you have utilised or recommend.  Resources might include articles, blogs or even podcasts and YouTube videos relate to the topic you are presenting.

By providing delegates with a link to this resource you can provide a deeper level of knowledge sharing with the Twitter audience following the conference hashtag.

5.  Use hyperlink shortening services and QR Codes

While Twitter and many of the applications utilised to manage a Twitter account automatically shorten any hyperlinks the tweet author might enter in a tweet, the tweeter still needs to type out the hyperlink.  As hyperlinks are often reasonably lengthy and time consuming to type out I recommend that conference presenters use a hyperlink shortening service like bit.ly to make shortened hyperlinks to be included in their slides.

Another way around this issue is to use QR codes which tweeters can simply take a picture of with their mobile device. Provided they have a QR code reader app the camera will immediately translate the QR code into a hyperlink.

While I have used QR codes in the past and in theory they are a great idea, I am in two minds about their use.  In my experience many audience members will not have used QR codes and may not have a QR code reader app installed on their device, limiting their usefulness somewhat.  Having said that, I would love to see wider uptake of QR codes by both conference presenters and delegates as they make conveying links to supporting resources a quick and easy process.

Next Time

Okay, now that we have covered some tips for conference presenters, in the final instalment of the Tweet Tweet series I’ll have a look at what conference organisers can do to facilitate better live conference reporting via Twitter.

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