This article follows on my from my post about how an event organiser can use social media to enhance their event. I thought that I would give the other side of the story and help people who attend conferences, to get the most out of them using twitter.

Twitter is a great tool to use at an event. If used successfully it can help to increase your personal brand and indirectly, promote what you do.

Be sure to follow the event hashtag while the people are speaking, if you can. You can retweet any  good tweets from other people also listening to the speaker.

How to increase your visibility at the event

One of the things I usually do to increase my visibility at events is to tweet some of the key facts or ideas from the speakers.  Tweet about the ideas, concepts and facts that people will want to retweet because it is interesting, insightful or useful. A lot of people can’t be bothered to tweet but it’s easy to retweet.

Example tweet

The format I generally use for this kind of thing is below. I usually copy and paste the start and the end of the message, then add the insight in the middle. See the example below

.@speaker-twitter-name says (insert your message) #event-hashtag

Be sure to put the full stop at the start if you use the @mention. If you don’t do this, it will limit the number of people who see the message. See this Twitter’s support page for more information about why.

If you do this, you will get people who are following the hashtag retweeting you and often the speakers will retweet you as well when they finish their presentation.

Do not forgot to tweet pictures

I often tweet pictures of the event and @mention people in the pictures if they are on stage.  Almost always get people retweeting it.

Continue on after the event

After the event I usually write a crowd sourced blog post with all the key information from the event.

Crowd sourced summary of #SBSS12 in 60 tweets!

Crowd sourced summary of #SBS2012 in 63 tweets!

Crowd sourced summary of #CSMB2B in 42 tweets!

I then tweet the blog out and @mention people who I have quoted and most people retweet it. For one of these articles, I was retweeted to over 90,000 people within 1 hour. This resulted in a spike in traffic to my blog.

Your turn

How have you used to twitter or any other social network to promote yourself at a conference? Do you think twitter can help enhance the experience or distract people from the content? What tips have I missed that could help you use twitter at an event?