How to Plan a Tweetup

Twitter fans have a way of bringing social networking to the local level and getting more people involved. The TweetUp can range from a small gathering to a weekend-long convention . At the same time, those who set up the TweetUps not only teach about what they do, they tweet about it. This gives the newcomer or curious attendee a fantastic way to see how both communities can interact, online and offline. Those setting up such events use Twitter to find speakers, locations, and discounts on these items as well as generating interest in the convention by well-timed and written tweets.

Naturally, Tweetups evolve from Twitter activity. However, to have people gather locally, one must set up Tweetup outposts. This lets the organizer network with authorities in the area, making sure that venues are used responsibly and in accordance with local regulations. The outposts also give the organizer an easier way of finding keynote speakers for the event based upon its exact theme. One of these outposts must be a dedicated landing page on the Internet , preferably a dedicated event site or Facebook page. Often, this will be where attendees can find registration and hotel information and officially sign up for the event. After the Tweetup, the landing page can become a gallery of photos from the event to help generate interest in the next one.

Create an original #hashtag on hashtag.org or Twitter search to define the meeting. Make it searchable and put it on the landing page so others can join in discussions utilizing Tweetchat. While setting these up, also go into a service such as Google Alert or Tweetbeep and set up alerts to arrive in your inbox when someone clicks the #hashtag , event or its keywords, or the eventís blog.

Use the #hashtag as the name of a Twitter list for the Tweetup. This helps to generate attention and curiosity about the event. Post the list on the landing page for the Tweetup so others can follow it, especially the keynote speakers. Mentioning the keynote speakers and having them follow this page will create an environment where people will want to be as new information gets added. Also, create a whoís who list of volunteers, speakers, and attendees to help keep track of the event and keep it organized. In this way, it will be easier to know which people and speakers to invite to future Tweetups and what new volunteers may be found.

Thus, organizing a Tweetup can be a rewarding experience. It allows groups of Twitter users to come together locally or regionally while still including others. By attending such an event, one can learn how to use the Internet for social networking and to meet others who use some of the same online tools but perhaps in different ways. This exciting new way to network gives people the chance to do so both online and offline simultaneously as they tweet while meeting.

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