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What the heck is a Twitter Chat and how can it help your business?

Twitter ChatDo you ever feel like Twitter has its own language and that you don’t speak it fluently? From tweets, hashtags and retweets to direct messages, mentions and #followfriday, there is a whole other world out there that companies should be taking advantage of to increase brand awareness and revenue.

One of the best way to get involved on the network is to participate in Twitter Chats. Another foreign term, possibly.

But don’t worry, I’m going to cover what are they, how they work and what the benefits are for participating in them.

What are Twitter chats and how do they work?

I think that Buffer says it best. A Twitter Chat is where a group of Twitter users meet at a pre-determined time to discuss a specific topic, using a designated hashtag (#) for each tweet. A host will post questions using Q1, Q2, etc. at the beginning of the tweet to spark conversations. Participants will tweet back using A1, A2, etc. to explain their point of view.

If you are looking for a way to better understand what your target audience is talking about and engage with active users who are seen as “influential,” Twitter chats are the way to do it.

What are the benefits of participating in them?

Whether you are hosting a chat or participating in one, there are many benefits. As a host, you can build awareness of your brand, build your Twitter following and network with potential partners and customers. If you are participating in an existing Twitter Chat, you will be able to learn new information, network with lots of people who are interested in the same topics that you are and promote your own expertise to build your brand on Twitter.

For more information on ways that Twitter Chats can help your business, check out this blog post from Social Media Examiner.

Where can I find out about Twitter Chats that I would be interested in joining?

There are so many Twitter Chats that happen on a fairly regular basis. Try these links to see what chats may relate to your industry:

For all of the marketing and advertising folks, Social Media Examiner put out a blog post for 25 chats that are “just for marketers.” I have this bookmarked on all of my devices and have most of these Twitter Chats in my calendar.

What tools can I use to stay organized during a Twitter Chat?

Because Twitter Chats move at lightning speed, here are some tools to keep up with the conversation:

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