Phasers and Fros

How to Host a Successful Live Tweet Event

You probably know what Live-Tweeting is. But just in case you don’t – Live Tweeting is when you use twitter to tweet about an event or something happening while you are watching or listening to it.  It may be a speaker or panel you are listening to, or a comic-con.  The purpose is to inform your followers about an event that they might not be able to attend.  It’s a great way to distribute information in real time.  And you would probably use a hashtag to let people easily find your tweets.

SaturdayNightSciFi pic

But live tweeting a movie that you are watching is slightly different.  First off, I’m not talking about tweeting in a film theater. Do that and you will get some unwanted attention from ushers and fellow film goers.  I’m talking about a movie that you are watching at home. Either on TV, or streaming from Netflix, Amazon Instant Video or various other sources.  It’s fun to tell your followers your thoughts about the film, whether if it’s cheesy, or how much you love some scene.

Like most things in life, Live Tweeting by yourself isn’t as fun as doing it with other people.  I mean, it’s social media, right? A couple friends make it way better. Why stop there? Imagine that it wasn’t just you and your couple friends, but a whole group of people on twitter watching the same movie and all of you were adding comments in real time.  Even with people you don’t know or follow!  And imagine if you were the person that set the whole thing up?

That’s Hosting a Live Tweet.

Here are a few steps that I’ve learned that makes for a successful Live Tweet.  Follow them if you think they are a good fit for the kind of event you are thinking of.

PICK A MOVIE OR TV SHOW

You can pick either one.  If you pick a TV show, or movie that’s airing live on TV, then just make sure you mention what Timezone you are watching in.  For the US, East coast audiences get to see a TV show 3 hours before the West coast.  If you are live tweeting a movie or TV Series that is not airing on a network but is actually streaming online, then make sure you tell your followers what streaming service it is so they can join.  Some might not have Netflix or Amazon Video.  If there is a link then include that in your tweets to let people know where the movie is online.

BE AWARE OF YOUR FOLLOWERS’ DEMOGRAPHIC

Think about what kind of movie or TV show you would like to host. Will it be a movie that everybody is familiar with or something that you think people would enjoy but is under-rated.  You can host a very good movie, or something so bad that people will enjoy making fun of it.  It can be old or new.  Think about your followers and what kind of audience they might be.  If you are hosting a live tweet for a very gory Horror film, or something very violent or has sexual content, you should give them a heads up.  Be mindful that just because a movie holds a special place in your heart, doesn’t mean everyone will enjoy it.  But don’t be afraid to introduce new things to people.

CHOOSING A HASHTAG

Of course the obvious hashtag would be the name of the Movie or TV show.  Television networks caught on to live tweeting quick and post hashtags on their broadcasts so people can interact with each other and the show.  If you are planning to watch Terminator 2 then by all means you can use #Terminator2.  But you also can make a unique hashtag that people can follow, and it might be more interesting or fun.  Instead of #Terminator2 it could be #T1000Blues or #SarahConnerWins.  If you plan on doing several consecutive live tweets on a weekly or monthly basis then use something that can brand the ongoing event better. #SaturdayNightSciFi is a hashtag which I use to tweet different Science Fiction films and #FridayNightHorror was created by Graveyard Shift Sisters.  Another popular one was #JemLiveTweet that Black Girl Nerds started a while ago.  My suggestion is not to make it too long so people can have room in their tweets to talk about the film. Don’t forget to make memes that include your hashtags with the dates and times of your live tweet event on them.

ASK PEOPLE TO JOIN YOU, ESPECIALLY YOUR WITTY FRIENDS

Pick one or two people that you think will be great at tweeting with you.  Include them in your promotional tweets as co-hosts.  They may be funny on twitter or be insightful of the film or TV show you’re tweeting.  Don’t even worry if they have never done it before. If you think they will enjoy it then invite them.

SEE IF A STAR OF THE FILM IS AVAILABLE TO JOIN, BUT BE CAREFUL

See if the director or an actor is available to join in the live tweet.  But be careful.  If everybody is going to talk about how bad the character is in the film then you might not want to invite that particular star of the movie.

AND NOW FOR THE ACTUAL LIVE TWEETING
Don’t put pressure on yourself. If you have done any live tweeting of a show or film then you know how it goes.  Be your same interesting twitter self that you always are.  The beauty of having people join in is that there will be plenty of tweets to keep everybody entertained, so don’t think you have to come up with best tweets.  If you are new to it then just remember to have fun, crack jokes or tweet interesting thoughts about what you are watching.  If you know any trivia about the film or TV show then that will add to the conversation. But try not to tweet too much trivia. I have found that people enjoy the humor that live tweeting generates the most.

THANK EVERYBODY FOR JOINING
Let them know when the next Live Tweet is taking place if you have one planned. Thank everybody for joining in, especially the ones you invited to co-host with you.  It’s also a perfect time to let everybody know that you have a blog or podcast, book on Amazon or some other project you might be doing.

I hope these suggestions can help you host a very successful Live Tweet Event.  Good luck!

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