This is the age of social media. If you want to promote your research, doing so on social media, especially Twitter, is the best way to go about it. Twitter（which rebranded as “X” in 2023） is the fastest way to reach a wide audience and can be the ideal tool to promote your research and network with other academics in your field. But how can researchers use this platform effectively? Here’s a guide for you.
Using Twitter in conferences
“Tweeting” refers to sharing a post on Twitter. Here, you must convey your idea in just 280 characters, punctuations included. So, optimizing your words is essential. You can increase the visibility of your tweets though the effective use of hashtags, visuals, and web links. You can also live stream on the platform, and live tweet from conferences. Using these many functions may be confusing for someone who is new to it. Here’s how you can go about it:
1. Make your presentation known
Start tweeting about your conference presentation well in advance to capture people’s attention, and hopefully increase the number of people attending your presentation.
You can tweet relevant one-liners with links to your conference. This can get people talking about your presentation and create a buzz around the event. Make sure to mention the date, time, and place of your presentation, and any updates to the same.
2. Live tweet your presentation
Did you know that you can “live tweet” your presentation? This essentially refers to sharing bits and pieces of your conference presentation during the conference itself, on Twitter!
To do this, you need to come prepared with your tweets before the start of the conference. But how can you condense long presentations into just 280 characters?
1. Summarize the main points of your research into sections of key questions, relevant findings, inferences, and practical uses.
2. Reduce the summary into tweets of 280 characters and post those tweets with relevant hashtags and links.
Ask a colleague’s opinion on the readability quotient of your tweets. Get a few opinions to polish these summaries. Once you have prepared several tweets, you can ask someone, possibly a colleague, to live tweet these posts at regular intervals all throughout conference and your presentation.
3. Keep your slides tweet-ready
You need to make slides that are easy to share. Instead of making your slides too wordy, use effective visuals and data charts that can easily convey your ideas. This easy to digest format gathers more attention. Moreover, have a list of hashtags you can use for tweeting with your posts.
4. Use relevant hashtags
Hashtags are the soul of Twitter. Usually when promoting an event, a particular hashtag is used; this hashtag is followed by everyone tweeting about the event. You should choose a hashtag for that purpose. You can also add hashtags which are relevant to your research. It gives visibility to your tweets and research to those who are looking for something in your field. So, find out if the conference you are presenting at has a hashtag! You can do so by searching for the event on Twitter or social media.
5. Be creative
Even while posting academic content, you need to vary your posts and be creative. Social media is not just about content, but how you present it. You need to be able to use relevant images, videos, and GIFs. You can create memes, or even use polls to make your tweets engaging and interactive. The more people interact with a tweet, the more its popularity will increase. So have fun with it! Make your posts entertaining as well as educative.
6. Help your attendees
While tweeting about your event, you can also mention the places worth visiting near your conference venue. Going to a conference often means exploring the city and area as well. Your attendees would definitely want to visit other places or try the local restaurants. You can help them out and, in turn, also make your tweets more engaging by mentioning such places to relax and make their stay more enjoyable.
7. Engage with others
Once you tweet about your presentation, you may get a lot of comments, questions, likes, and retweets. You should interact with them as much as possible because that increases engagement on your tweets. This increase in traffic is what we are seeking to achieve through tweets. You may find some comments praising your presentation. You should thank the posters of these comments for being a part of your event. Some people may have queries and doubts regarding your research. You should do your best to clarify their questions. Some may also post rude comments or messages. Those are inevitable and it is best to ignore them.
Create your own social media success story!
These pointers will be your guide towards making a successful dive into social media. It will help you draw enough attention to your presentation and make it an enriching experience. Live tweet your event and engage with the audience. Who knows, you might even end up creating worthwhile networks through this platform!
“5 Steps to tweet your research at conferences effectively”
by Elena Milani, Author, Editage Insights, viewed on 17 Aug 2023,