Gift to my enemies: If you want to make me nervous, introduce me as an expert. I know my stuff. I’m pretty confident. But when the host of the #NPTalk Twitter Chat introduced me yesterday as an expert guest, I have to tell you, it cranked up the pressure a bit. Add that to my inexperience participating in these chats, and I was about ready to throw up. But I survived! Now I’m here to share these tips on participating in a Twitter Chat.

  1. Use a tool like TweetChat to follow the hashtag and have it automatically added to your replies. This really helped me keep on top of things. The ability to star particular tweets – things I wanted to respond to or ask more about when time allowed – was especially handy.
  2. Remember chat etiquette. Here’s a helpful post from Social Nicole on that topic and a few other Twitter Chat tips. Thumbs up to the NPTalk crowd for being one of the more respectful and generous groups I’ve seen.
  3. If you have an agenda, plan ahead. Prepare questions, and/or anticipate questions you will be able to answer, and be ready to share links and facts. In retrospect, I could have done better at this.
  4. Psyche yourself up; do a little shadow boxing or whatever works for you, because Twitter Chat can feel like being sprayed by a hose. A fire hose. Tweets are coming right and left and you are trying to keep up with all of it while also composing your own message…but if I can do it, so can you. Good luck.

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