#movechat : A Twitter ConversationBy Eric Anders • Jun 1st, 2011 • Category: #MoveChat, Consumer Help, Social Media Marketing
A weekly community chat about moving and storage related topics
I mean c'mon! How much useful information can be exchanged 140 truncated characters at a time?
Twitter chat is a guided conversation where users interested in a particular topic hop onto the service to chat.
Alliance Relocation Services hosted the first ever online tweet chat related to the moving and storage industry in October, 2010. It was called #movechat.
Since then, the friendly get-together is normally conducted at the same time each week among interested industry colleagues within the Twitter community. Initially many participants were Twitter aficionados or social media strategists in the U.S. Recently, the group has grown to include many other new faces from both inside and outside the moving industry worldwide.
As it has evolved, this type of online venue also serves as a virtual gathering place for anyone seeking professional information, product or vendor resources, moving advice, and practical help for planning an upcoming domestic or international relocation.
These regularly scheduled chats normally take place each and every Tuesday from 2-3pm EST (7:00 BST). Occasionally #movechats are cancelled due to lack of community interest … or more pressing concerns on the part of the participating moderators.
Some social media experts claim Twitter chats are becoming a popular way for the average person to get online from anywhere and receive immediate responses to questions from leading industry experts.
What are Twitter Chats?
Twitter chats are scheduled online conversations held inside a virtual community meeting room where everyone uses their newly refined truncated communications habits and acquired twitter tools to freely exchange ideas about the topic at hand.
Due to Twitter's organizational structure, tweet chats work best using abbreviations and symbols. For instance, a hashtag is similar to other web tags – it helps add tweets to a category. Hashtags have the 'hash' or 'pound' symbol (#) preceding the tag, like this example: #movechat = Hashtag
Most online chats usually last one hour and are moderated by 1-3 people, depending on size. The best chats have well thought out themes, topics, and questions each week that have anywhere from 30-400 people in attendance.
It is nearly impossible to take part in a chat using twitter.com because of the speeds and need to refresh. Sign into TweetChat and type in ‘MoveChat’ (no space), and it automatically refreshes the chat in real time and without having to constantly type in the tag.
Or, if you're REALLY interested in the concept, click on the image on the left or bookmark http://tweetchat.com/room/movechat. If the idea catches your fancy, post a recurring reminder to your calendar each Tuesday afternoon and include the above link in your personal message.
A link to #movechat as been added to the the blogroll in the right sidebar of RELO Roundtable.
These chats can go extremely fast!! Fortunately, the tools at Tweetchat (or similar applications like TweetGrid, and TweetDeck) provide the chance to slow down, or speed up the refresh speed for your benefit. You can reply to, retweet (RT), and talk directly @ people using this platform. Or…you can just 'listen' in.
You'll find this is an excellent space for companies to connect directly with their customers, hear their concerns, find out their needs, and create new relationships.
All transcripts following a chat, can be found using wthashtag.com. Frequently the chat moderators will post a digest within the following week of all the best posts from the chat on a website or newsletter.
Recently, Portage Cartage, a Winnipeg-based moving & storage company affiliated with Mayflower Transit in Manitoba, Canada and moderator of most of the weekly #movechats, has been posting a digest of the hour long interactions at their company blog, the Dispatch. Check it out to get a taste of the experience.
Hope you can join the conversation!