Tweetups are fast becoming a fun and effective way to connect with other Twitter users in your local community! What exactly happens at these tweetups you ask? Well, usually they provide an opportunity for Twitter enthusiasts to get together offline and talk about their love of Twitter, their local flavor, and other interests.
Tweetups also give small business owners a chance to reach out to consumers (in a non-spammy way) and gain more exposure. Some local businesses will even take it a step further by sponsoring or hosting a tweetup. For real estate professionals who understand the current marketing and communication shift taking place, tweetups offer a unique way to engage with likeminded locals and grow your network. But there are many more reasons to tweetup, here are my top 10:
10 Reasons to Tweetup
(1) It’s fun!
(2) Gets you off the computer and facilitates meeting your online friends in person! Face to face!
(3) Connect with other likeminded tech folks and make new friends with similar interests.
(4) Connect with local business leaders which can lead to more referrals or cooperative business endeavors.
(5) Learn more about your local community – local needs, new businesses, upcoming events, etc.
(6) Support a local charity or fundraiser. Rally supporters, organize donations, or host an event.
(7) Promote your business authentically via networking. Your business will undoubtedly gain more exposure from word of mouth and via the media (photos, videos, etc) being shared from tweetups.
(8) Share your love of Twitter with others who know EXACTLY what you are talking about – favorite apps, cool tools, new tweeps, etc.
(9) Swap twitter business strategies, as well as other social media tools and tips. Share what has worked for your business, talk best practices, and ask questions.
(10) Reconnect after the tweetup on Twitter, support local endeavors, pay it forward with RTs, and foster your new friendships.
If you haven’t been to one, or wish to start a regular tweetup group in your local area, check out these 10 tips for success!
10 Tips for Continued Tweetup Success:
(1) Create a Facebook Page for an online hub, inviting others, and fostering community. Invite several admins to participate by sharing helpful links, creating future events, and regular communication.
(2) Identify media makers! There will always be that one guy or gal who loves taking pictures and/or video. Dub him or her as your media mascot and invite anyone who enjoys sharing media to take a lot of photos and video at the tweetups. And be sure to post to Flickr and Facebook, tag tweetup members and promote commenting!
(3) Center the evening around an optional activity or fun contest! This will help kickstart conversation. Draw upon your local attractions, restaurants, activities. (ex: bocce ball, star gazing, wine tasting)
(4) Name tags! Okay, it may seem dorky, but how else will you remember the names (and usernames) of your new Tweeps! Check out these super cute “Tweetstickers“! An alternative option would be to create a fun sign-in sheet or board. The usernames can be made into a list and then shared via Facebook, email or your own tweetup blog.
(5) Invite speakers or “sharers” meaning someone shares a helpful twitter tool, social media strategy, OR provides a fun demonstration. Could even be a local restaurant sharing a favorite recipe, a nurse sharing flu-shot clinic hours, or real estate pro giving some helpful advice or tips. But remember to keep it short & tweet! Tweeps are there to connect and converse, not to sit and watch a speaker all night.
(6) Create an official local tweetup blog (invite several tweeps to contribute), OR lifestream local member tweets.
(7) Create an event page, either as a Facebook Event, Twtvite, or a page off your tweetup blog. Be sure to share with your local network, invite newbies, and connect with new tweeps ahead of time!
(8) Get a local business(es) to host the tweetups. A local restaurant owner who uses Twitter or has the benefits explained to him/her will usually offer up their location for regular use (especially if your tweetups take place during the week). Our local Tri-Valley Tweetup Club has invited several businesses to take part to help provide exposure to a variety of locals in our community. I happen to live in an area with over 40 local wineries who are happy to participate. For example, our October 8th Tri-Valley Tweetup is being hosted by Wente Vineyards. In fact, they are so excited to host us that they are pouring our first glass of wine for free and setting up a star-gazing center for attendees!
(9) Involve local businesses as sponsors (prizes for contests, host activities, freebies). Again we reached out to our community and our friends at Diablo Magazine bring free mags to our tweetups, our Tri-Valley Visitors Bureau brings local treats and wines for prizes when we have contests/activities, and other local business owners, like Swank Mommy provide special giveaways from time to time!
(10) Everybody loves a T-shirt! And they can help promote your local tweetup club! Even better when you add fun phrases like “wearing my twitter shirt” or “show me your tweets”!
Now these are my tips and suggestions. You could really go in a lot of different directions here. There is no one true formula for tweetups. I have attended tweetups that were organized specifically for real estate professionals, or in conjunction with a local conference. In fact, I’ve attended a tweetup that was itself a unique learning event hosted by a speaker. However, in my experience I’ve really enjoy my local tweetup group, because I get the chance to connect with people who live, work and play in the same community. The tweeps I’ve met have shared their reviews of fun events and activities, suggested new local resources which I have benefited from, and most of all….I’ve made many new local friends! Oh, and did I mention…it’s fun!