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Why I tweet my presentations

October 13, 2014

This conversation took place on Twitter over the weekend. It was impossible to answer in 140 characters.

I often schedule tweets to appear during my presentations. I primarily do this to give credit where credit is due, not to pick out key messages of my talks. Takeaways, highlights, key messages of my talks that resonate I leave to the audience to tweet in 140 character snippets. In fact, reading their interpretations of my presentation gives me great insight as to what interests them or surprises them.

So what information do I schedule?

  • References: My talks usually contain references to papers or articles. I tweet the references and include URLs to the PubMed abstract or full article. Where possible I include the Twitter handle of the authors of the article.
  • People who inspire me: Often I gather information prior to my talks from my social network. If an idea came from someone else, I include an attribution to them in a tweet and include their Twitter handle.
  • Further information: Sometimes presentations are only 10-20 minutes long. There’s always more indepth information that we can share. When limited in presentation time, I’ll write blogs expanding on points that I’d like to go deeper on. I schedule tweets to coincide with that part of my talk and refer the audience to the relevant blog post.
  • Hashtags and people: If there are communities or thought leaders that I think my audience would be interested in, then I schedule tweets about them too.

Is this clever? I think so, but I also think it is useful to my audience. I believe in making it easy for people to find people and resources, to expand the networks of people who are interested in the things I’m interested in, and most of all, to give credit where credit is due.

10 Comments leave one →
  1. amcunningham permalink
    October 14, 2014 8:16 am

    Thanks so much Coleen,
    Some if these uses occurred to me but you have highlight even more!
    Of course many of these could also be addressed in a blog post – released at same time as talk starts- and you probably do that too but I see why tweets around the same time also add some more value. Thinking about the blog post, Margaret McCartney always has a blog post with references to go along with her radio appearances- very useful!
    Many thanks again,

    Liked by 1 person

  2. October 14, 2014 9:59 am

    As usual, you take our understanding of Social Media to a deeper level. Many Thanks.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. October 14, 2014 10:06 am

    Thank you AnneMarie. In fact, I recall that my scheduled tweets spawned a Twitter conversation between you, me and Pat Rich during Med 2.0 in London last year.

    While my contribution on the panel was a discussion about the failure to measure an online community that led, in part, to the demise of the community, I knew that people would be interested in hearing what should be measured. Having anticipated that the time limit of the session would allow for a fulsome discussion on what to measure for success, I tweeted links to several references for further information.

    One of the obvious benefits of scheduling tweets is to narrate the presentation and bring it beyond the walls of the room. Here is a sample transcript of the tweets and conversation that were generated during a presentation to Gideon Koren at MotherRisk.

    I scheduled 15 tweets for an hour presentation (usually I don’t tweet that many, but there were quite a few references). It engaged 12 people outside the room at the time of the presentation and several thereafter.

    AnneMarie, Do you schedule tweets during your presentations?


  4. October 16, 2014 5:10 pm

    Love the idea. I’m going to have to try that the next time I’m giving a talk.


    • October 17, 2014 8:40 am

      Glad to hear this inspired you John. Let me know how it works out for you if you give scheduling tweets a try.


  5. October 20, 2014 5:10 am

    Well, I did my first pre-scheduled tweets for a talk I gave last week Colleen and it went really well. The talk was to a small group, none of whom tweeted! So the first advantage was that if I hadn’t done so there would be no tweets emanating from the talk. When I checked my Twitter stream later, I saw that many of my tweets had generated engagement which I was happy to respond to. I am now a convert to this practice and will include it in future presentations.


  6. Editor permalink
    October 20, 2014 5:12 am

    Reblogged this on Health Care Social Media Monitor and commented:
    I tweeted my first presentation recently and am now a convert to the practice. If you want to learn more about why it’s a good idea, then Colleen Young’s post is a great place to start.


  7. September 11, 2015 11:44 pm

    Hi Colleen,

    Thanks for sharing your insight on using Twitter to enhance your presentations! I learned a lot, thank you.
    Sara Taylor


    • September 12, 2015 8:12 pm

      Hi Sara,
      Thrilled that you discovered this post. How do you use tweets when presenting?


      • September 12, 2015 9:51 pm

        Thanks for your reply Colleen. I must say I haven’t implemented tweets when presenting but certainly plan to. I have an upcoming presentation on professionalism, physicians & social media and I plan to implant some of your tips.


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