How to Prepare for #CampusChat

Here are some tips to help prepare for #CampusChat:

tweety_campuschatA Twitter chat is kind of like fireworks on the 4th of July–there’s lots of energy and excitement with activity going off all around you and it’s hard to know where to look. It can even be mesmerizing. One thing you don’t want to do is freeze and fail to participate.

The chat is from 1-2 p.m., Eastern. I am usually online before the tweeting the chat officially starts.

I will wrap things up at the end of the hour, but others may stay online and chat longer which will be wonderful. You are welcome to stay online longer if you want, but it’s fine to leave when the hour is up. Just please say something like “It’s been fun/Goodnight/Goodbye”…etc. So we’ll all know you’re no longer available.

Now, back to the beginning. The most important things to remember are these:

  1. You must use #campuschat in every tweet or your response can’t be tracked as related to this chat (tools like #Tweetchat apply the hashtag automatically).
  2. It’s fine to reply directly to someone by clicking the icon for “reply” but it’s not necessary for every question.
  3. However, feel free to DM me if you need to during the chat (or even pick up the phone and call me if you need to at 540-239-2525).
  4. Have fun and feel free to toss questions out to the chat audience if you’d like. I know I will.

When we start, I’ll tweet welcome everyone and tweet who you are and ask you so volunteer some info yourselves. My tweets will open with something like this:

@collegevisit: Welcome to #campuschat! Our guest tonight is @….

I recommend having several statements, 120-characters long, ready to paste into the chat as conversation starters. Please make them relevant to the college/parent audience.

I use a numbered question sequence (Q1, Q2, Q3, etc.), please remember to respond with the corresponding numbered answer (A1, A2, A3,… though some guests just repeat the Q reference instead of leading their response with “A”).  The structure of numbered questions allows you create answers and have them ready to paste in when the time comes. Some guests prefer this method while others enjoy an open forum.  Whichever you prefer will be fine with me. I will email you the schedule of questions prior to the chat.

Please take the time to login to your chat tools about 10-15 minutes prior to the chat start time. Don’t try to install tools close to chat time, please do that hours prior to the chat and test your setup to make sure everything works!

Tips, statistics and links are likely to be retweeted more than anything else, so if you have data of this nature, be sure to include in your ready-made tweets.

Thank you and I look forward to our chat!
-Kelly

Resources:

TweetChat – a free tweet manager designed for chats.  Sign up an hour before the chat; authorize your twitter account and enter “campuschat” in the hashtag look up box. TweetChat will automatically place #campuschat at the end of all of your tweets and the #campuschat feed will be the only tweets displayed. This makes it much easier to keep up with a chat.

Questions will be posted from: @collegevisit

and I’ll be leading the chat and welcoming you from @zkellyq.