First time round, Twitter hours seemed to miss the mark, inundating people’s feed with promotions and sales plugs. It was enough to make us switch off and abandon Twitter hours in haste. But, like a much loved 90s TV reboot, a comeback is here, After the somewhat warranted swift side step away from Twitter hours, the past few months have seen a surge of people participating in some very niche Twitter chats where productive and useful interactions are taking place.
A few years ago, we asked whether Twitter hours were still worth the effort and, whilst some of our takeaways still hold up, things have changed so much we thought it was worth revisiting our position. Here’s why.
The Twitter hours that stopped us scrolling on past
After a bombardment of sales tweets, we seriously doubted that Twitter hours would ever recover, but the last year has seen the emergence of chats which have cultivated engaged audiences, forged online communities and contributed towards continuing professional development. Here are a few of our personal favourites:
Started and facilitated by established and respected PR practitioner, Ella Minty, this Twitter hour is public relations focused – covering the many facets and challenges that sit within the PR remit. The hour, from 8pm-9pm every Wednesday, has grown steadily in popularity, gaining a loyal and involved audience and a reputation for not shying away from difficult topics. We heard there’s even a rumour about participation counting towards CPD…so watch this thread.
Created by Lucy Dixon, #TradesTalk is exactly that – different trades from plumbers to electricians discuss a particular theme every Tuesday evening between 8pm-9pm. As well as all the banter you’d expect from this group, it too, doesn’t shy away from important topics, recently covering mental health and wellbeing, to the scourge of van theft to favourite tools for the job.
This community is provides a friendly, open space for people with different levels of hearing loss to discuss everything from cinema subtitles, to how to talk to others about hearing loss and challenges in the workplace, to the newest equipment in hearing technology. Held on the first Wednesday of each month between 1pm and 2pm, it’s a great example of a community sharing it’s collective experiences to help others.
How Twitter hours have risen from the ashes
As social media evolves continuously, it’s not a surprise that Twitter hours are being used in a very different way. Twitter hours have now become an opportunity to get conversations started about topics that ignite your passions, engage with people you might not normally get the chance to, and bond with a worldwide community.
Chats are now so specific that conversations are well and truly filtered and tailored to perfection for your interests, making Twitter hours an important personal and professional development tool that you need to get on board with. It’s important to keep things friendly here rather than strictly business, you don’t want to be in it for the wrong reasons, people can spot that from a mile off. Concentrate on building a rapport with those in the same industry as you, learn from them and keep up to date with what they’re up to, this will help you inject a bit more personality into your engagement; nobody wants to chat to a robot or pay attention to a broken record of a sales monologue.
Choose your Twitter Hour wisely
Be selective about the Twitter Hours in which you choose to invest time. Many are still in the evening, which means a little bit of work time eating into your non-work life. For those who like to switch off after 6pm that’s maybe not so appealing, however, there are communities to be found and enjoyed and lots of knowledge to be shared and gained. Just remember to resist the temptation to sell, sell, sell.