If you’re a photographer and aren’t using Twitter, you’re seriously missing out!
Twitter is a platform that is underused by photographers. Yet it offers a host of features that could help you to promote your photography business.
I’ve previously shared how you could be using Twitter to connect with journalists who are looking for experts, case studies and news. The #journorequest hashtag is a free PR tool that’s worth its weight in gold. And an easy way to identify opportunities that could lead to valuable media exposure for you and your photography business.
But there’s more!
Twitter chats are also a great way to build relationships and get more visible online.
Keep reading to find out what they are and how, as a photographer, you can be using Twitter chats to promote and grow your business.
Frequently asked questions about Twitter chats for photographers
What is a Twitter chat?
A Twitter chat is a live group discussion on Twitter. The conversation revolves around a specific hashtag.
They are usually held on a set day and time and are held either weekly, fortnightly or monthly.
Side note: Hashtags are used to group together content on a specific them. When you search for a particular hashtag (on Twitter and in other platforms such as Instagram), posts containing that hashtag will be presented to you in the search results.
What do I need to take part in a Twitter chat?
To take part, you’ll need a Twitter account. (Try to secure the username that matches your username on other social media platforms if you can).
With your profile created, simply complete your Twitter bio and upload a photo to your profile. Now, you’re ready to get started!
Why bother taking part in Twitter chats?
Twitter chats are a means of growing your network and connecting with audiences relevant to your business. They are a lifeline for many a small business. That’s because they are a free way to network with potentially thousands of people, all from the comfort of your own home.
Participating in a Twitter chat is a great way to increase your visibility on the platform and to grow your following. And since you’re no doubt looking to increase awareness of your photography services, then gaining more followers on Twitter is a means of achieving this.
Simply by participating in Twitter chats, you could connect with hundreds of people and gain followers quickly. So, whether you’re just getting started on Twitter or if you’ve been on there a while, this is an easy way to quickly accelerate your follower numbers and make more people aware of your photography services.
Can I start my own Twitter chat?
While you can absolutely create your own, I’d recommend that you initially engage in existing Twitter chats to learn how to use them.
At first glance, you could find it all a bit confusing. The pace is fast. And, if the chat is attended by lots of people, there will be many posts shared over a short period of time which can make it a challenge to keep up with the flow of the conversation.
So, I’d recommend that you learn the ropes first by taking part in already-established Twitter chats.
Which Twitter chats should I take part in?
That will completely depend on a number of factors such as your physical location and also your area of specialism.
Once you start looking into what Twitter chats exist, you’ll probably discover that there are many different chats relevant to your business.
- Firstly, there are location-specific Twitter chats.
These are great if you want to connect with local people (including potential photography clients) and business owners.
For example, #DorsetHour is a regional Twitter chat, for Dorset-based Twitter users, like me. There is also #SouthWestHour. No doubt you’ll find the equivalent for your town, city or region.
- Secondly, there are industry-specific Twitter chats.
For example, photography-specific Twitter chats such as #PhotographyChat and #TogChat are where you’ll be able to connect with fellow photographers.
- Thirdly, there are also niche Twitter hours such as #WeddingHour and #BrideHour for wedding-related conversation, for example.
With a simple Google search, you’ll be able to find ones relevant to your photography specialism.
- Fourthly, there are entrepreneurship-specific Twitter chats such as #SmallBizChat and #UKBizLunch.
I actually found this comprehensive list of Twitter chats online. Why not take a look through and identify which ones are relevant to you?
If you spot something, make a note of the date and time they are on and add it into your diary, so you don’t forget to attend.
How do I take part in a Twitter chat?
Taking part is as simple as logging into Twitter at the correct time and posting and/or engaging with posts made by others in the thread.
Log in to Twitter either on a desktop or via the app on your phone or tablet device and search for the relevant hashtag in the search box.
The search results will bring up conversation threads relating to that Twitter chat. You’ll be able to see tweets (posts on Twitter) made by participants of the chat if they have included the hashtag in their posts.
Important – The name of the game is to participate rather than observe. Twitter is about community building and networking rather than just being a platform for pushing out your own news.
So, be sure to get involved in the conversation by answering the questions shared by the host of the chat. You can also post your own thoughts, comments and questions to the group as well.
Throughout the chat, include the relevant hashtag in your Tweets so they are visible in the conversation thread.
However, if you’d rather message someone taking part in the chat privately then you can also do this. Just send them a tweet containing their unique username at the start of the message (e.g. @joebloggs) followed by your message, and don’t include the hashtag.
What if I can’t participate in the Twitter chat regularly?
Attendance is completely optional (and free) so there is no need to attend regularly. Simply jump into the conversation as and when is convenient for you.
However, if you attend regularly, you’ll more quickly develop relationships with other regulars and cement existing relationships.
So, do you fancy taking part in a Twitter chat?
Since you’re looking to promote your photography business and to secure clients and bookings, you’ll no doubt already have a presence on most social media platforms. Facebook and Instagram seem to be the most popular with photographers.
But Twitter could well open up new and exciting connections and opportunities for your photography business. And there are many relevant twitter chats for photographers like you.
Why not research which Twitter chats could be relevant to your photography business and give it a go?
Let’s connect on Twitter
If you’ve got a Twitter account, come and find me on there. I’m at www.twitter.com/zoehiljemark. Or, drop your Twitter username in the comments below!
And if you’re already actively using Twitter chats, comment below to let me know which ones are your favourites.