Tweetups… A Great Strategy for Conference/Event Networking?

tweetup I love to connect with my online network of friends and colleagues when I’m attending a conference or event in their area. It makes traveling more rewarding, fun and profitable as well. Great collaborations always seem to follow, so I’d like to share a few tips for arranging successful Tweetups.

Use your social media lists to let everyone know you’re going to be in their town and want to bring your network together. Just because it’s a Tweetup, don’t forget to use more traditional means to spread the word and organize your event—email, meetup.com, Eventbrite and even apps.

Foursquare is great for letting your connections know where you have been, but OverNear is great for letting your connections know where you are going to be which gives you the ability to set up meetings with key influencers before you even arrive.

Since you may not have been to the location you’ve selected for your Tweetup, ask a couple of your most trusted local contacts if it’s suitable for your requirements. It can be disappointing to arrive only to find a dark dive bar with music blaring when you were hoping for a fun but professional environment suited to good conversation.

Be sure to bring nametags and sharpies—you’ll want to be able to put faces and Twitter handles together with actual names and businesses. Collect business cards so you’ll be able to update your database and stay in touch. Drawing for a door prize is always a nice incentive for collecting cards as well as a good excuse to say a few words to the whole group midway through your event.

Here’s to your next successful Tweetup—a great way for you to connect with your network live and in person and to connect them to each other as well!

Comments

  1. Always a good idea to put a face with a name. I’ve heard of FourSquare, but not OverNear. Will check it out.
    Julie recently posted…Interview With a Speakers Bureau – Speaker BookMy Profile

  2. I love getting to meet folks in person after connecting with them online. It takes the relationship to a whole new level. Next week I’ll be meeting a colleague in person – she and I have been in touch via social networking for 3-4 years and this is the first time we’ll see each other face-to-face (with the exception of Skype).
    Thanks Patty.
    🙂
    Debra Jason recently posted…Networking: It’s Not All About Collecting Business CardsMy Profile

  3. Patty,
    I LOVE Tweetups! They can be soooo much fun and informative. It also really gets people engaged in the conversation and people look forward to them. Thanks for the information!

    XO,
    Shekinah

  4. Patty,
    Thank you for the tips for traveling and social media. I am challenges in this area so these tips help. You kept it simple (which I need) and to the point. I am looking forward to learning more! thanks!

    Kim

  5. Patty, great post about Tweetups, which is definitely a great way to meet your online connections offline. The exact way we met in October of 2009. 🙂
    Lissa Duty recently posted…10 Tips to Manage Facebook Fatigue & Your Facebook NewsfeedMy Profile

  6. great Ideas Patty!
    Thank you for sharing..This is something for me to take on board as I travel this year for work.
    I am now prepared with your useful tips 🙂

  7. Great ideas Patty! Love the idea of meeting, networking asking for business cards to follow up !
    Ana Lucia Novak recently posted…Social Media Guidelines for Small Business, Authors and ProfessionalsMy Profile

  8. Hey Patty – Great post and I am loving the look of your new site.
    Michele Scism recently posted…Read This If You Are on the Verge of Giving Up…My Profile

  9. Great Advice Patty!
    You are SO the QUEEN of Networking and this is just one more Tip!
    See You at the Next “TWEETUP”
    Debbie Saviano recently posted…Saying HelloMy Profile

  10. Great suggestion…also if I’ve organised a networking get together following a conference or event I’m attending, I use hashtag searching at the event to connect with other like-minded people and invite them along too! 🙂
    Claire recently posted…This week’s Thursday Thought Quote: When what ‘should’ make you happy doesn’t, try something else… – Claire Brummell, Feminine 1stMy Profile

  11. Patty,

    I was looking for a way to easily connect with my peeps when traveling and you timely article helped to answer that question.

    Like Noni, I have been to events where there were friends I would have loved to connect with in person and it is such a downer to find out we were both there. This is a great way to solve that problem.

    Will check into the other sites you mentioned too.

    Thanks, Patty!

  12. This is a wonderful idea. One of the things I recommend event planners do is to create a Twitter list of their attendees, so people can network beforehand. Adding a Tweet up to the mix and bringing in other connections is even better!
    Daphne Bousquet recently posted…Let’s Dance: When Your Event Objective And Format Don’t JiveMy Profile

  13. What a great idea. It so easy to be connected if we just know how and this will clearly help. I appreciate you sharing your expertise in this. I knew about Foursquare but hadn’t heard of OverNear. I will have to check it out.

  14. I too was at the tweet-up at eWomen #ewnconf a few weeks ago. Really enjoyed meeting folks and putting the handles to the faces. Not my first tweet-up nor will it be my last!
    Wonderful to see your smiling face Patty, and get a big warm hug!
    With the use of hashtags you can coordinate in advance and get a better turnout.
    Elaine Lindsay recently posted…Comment on Ok folks an itersting new social site that works with archetypes, personality and… by Elaine LindsayMy Profile

    • Patty Farmer says:

      Elaine,
      It was fabulous to finally meet you in person at the conference and the Tweet-up. After all our Google+ Hangouts together it was great to hug you in person!

      @pattyfarmer

  15. This is cool, I never considered attempting to use Twitter in MeetUp fashion. Thanks for the idea Patty 🙂
    Joe Stauffacher recently posted…What’s Your PurposeMy Profile

    • Patty Farmer says:

      Joe,
      I have been using Tweet-ups for several years now and it has been a great way to connect with my online connections when I am out of town at events. Makes it easier to move online connections offline and start building relationships.

      @pattyfarmer

  16. My first experience with a Tweetup was at the eWomen conference earlier this month. It was great fun and really brought the concept of high tech meets high touch together. Great post and reminder we should be using these more. Thanks as always for great insight!
    Kathi Laughman recently posted…Coaching Insight: The law of 2 out of 3My Profile

    • Patty Farmer says:

      Kathi,
      I attended that Tweet-up as well. It was a great one and I met several people that I had collaborated on a book together in person for the first time. It was wonderful to put faces to names.

      @pattyfarmer

  17. Excellent Advice! Conferences are full of opportunities to make lasting connections and do business. Finding out who is going and setting up a time to talk with them is huge. Thank you for this post!
    Alicia Arenas recently posted…What 64% of Consumers Want You to KnowMy Profile

    • Patty Farmer says:

      Alicia,
      Conferences are great places to start building relationships and to discover collaboration opportunities. Thank you for the comment.
      @pattyfarmer

  18. These are great tips Patty, thank you. I just learned a new way to use Twitter. I especially like the idea of having a door prize to motivate people to leave their business card.
    Julia Neiman recently posted…Tips for Building a Professional Network on LinkedInMy Profile

  19. This is great advice, Patty. Taking relationships from online to in person adds depth and connection that often results in great things!

    • Patty Farmer says:

      Ava,
      It has been the best tool for generating collaborative opportunities I have found so far!
      @pattyfarmer

  20. Love this Patty. I haven’t done this before but I can truly see the value of it. Some people are just waiting on the opportunity to connect and this is a perfect way to do it and make the most out of your travel.

    Thanks for sharing.

    Alex
    Alex Navas recently posted…Ask Alex #1 – Is Asking For Facebook Fanpage Likes Spam?My Profile

  21. Great tips! Conferences can be so busy and rushed during breaks that intentionally creating time and space to connect with others there makes a huge difference in the relationships you can build.
    Michelle Shaeffer recently posted…BlogMy Profile

  22. Fabulous ideas Patty. Great tip about bringing the Sharpie and name tags so peeps can put the @name with the real life name.

    I loved our Dinner Tweetup in Dallas recently.

    It is such a great use of time to make your travels and events do double-duty. Plus, it is always nice to visit and strengthen friendships.

    Thanks for a fabulous post. you are definitely the connector!

    Love and hugs,
    Margo
    Margo DeGange recently posted…7 Communication Tips for Successful Facebook InteractionsMy Profile

    • Patty Farmer says:

      Margo,
      Thank you. It was great to meet in person with you and the other authors of Success in High Heels. Thank you for driving up and the pictures we took were awesome of all of us!

      Hugs,
      @pattyfarmer

  23. Hi patty
    Thank you for this great advice. I recently went to Melbourne for a conference and unbeknown to me, I was sitting in the same room with a colleague I have never met in person. It was such a disappointment when we found out later that the other was there. We are both from different states and had travelled to be there. We could have had dinner together that night. From now on, when I travel, I will let people know and twitter is a good option.
    Noni x

    • Noni,
      I have had that happen to me several times as well but one of the best ways I have found to connect with attendees before an event is by finding out the hashtag before if they are using one. I loved meeting some of the other authors from the Success in High Heels book when they came to Dallas for an event. Wish you could have joined us!

      @PattyFarmer

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