While you're sitting through that keynote, doodling on your notepad, the cool kids are tweeting. They're liveblogging the talking points, reporting on who's there and planning where to meet for a drink once the speech is over. So how can you join them? We chatted with Laura Fitton, aka @Pistachio, a Twitter consultant with nearly 7,000 followers, to help you connect with the influential Twitter crowd.
Before the Event:
- As early as possible, sign up for an account and set up your mobile phone so you can text in your tweets. Start making friends, and don't go crazy with self-promotion.
- Tweet that you'll be attending and use search.twitter.com to find and follow other attendees. To increase your chances of getting a follow back, send an @reply to introduce yourself.
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At the Event:
- Don't forget your mobile. Fitton uses both SMS and Twitter's mobile site, sending tweets via text and checking them on m.twitter.com so her phone doesn't get overloaded.
- Use Twitter as a business card replacement. Follow other Twitterers immediately by texting "follow username" to 40404 and stay connected after the event.
- Livetweet interesting sessions, sharing your new knowledge and making notes.
- Listen in to get instant audience feedback if you're on a panel.
- Meet up with other "tweetpeeps." You can connect instantly via direct message, so you don't need a mobile number to text personally.
- Don't get stressed out about reading every tweet. "Read it like you're at a cocktail party," says Fitton. "You can never listen to every conversation." But do make sure you're listening in for when the real cocktail party takes place--you don't want to miss your first "tweetup."