Imagine this: Driving all around Nashville, Tennessee with a TV/Movie Star sitting next to you for seven hours, live tweeting his every move, all while raising money for childhood cancer. The other weekend, CBM Account Director Alison Kessler and I did just that.
Okay, let me start at the beginning.
Forward Beat (@forward_beat), a new blog focused on all things Nashville, happened to be sponsoring an incredible event: Rally For Kids with Cancer. This event helped to raise money for childhood cancer research and let people have fun while doing it.
The Rally is a one-of-a-kind ‘Amazing Race’ type of event that provides participants with a jam-packed agenda filled with tasks they had to complete to receive points. Each team had one celebrity leader, and were provided with luxury vehicles to complete the citywide scavenger hunt. All teams had to donate at least $25,000 to participate in The Rally. To quote my boss, “This is f**king awesome.” And indeed it was f**cking awesome.
Some of the celebrity navigators were Billy Baldwin (of Backdraft and Gossip Girl), Academy Award and Golden Globe Winner Mira Sorvino, (the inventor of post-its), and #TeamXfinity’s draft pick, Mekhi Phifer (dreamy ER doctor and current Divergent cast member). With an impressive celebrity showing, this Rally was bound to be a success.
Here’s a glimpse into what it looked like:
Now, while it was (literally) all fun and games, live tweeting is not for the faint of heart. You are constantly on the move and cannot miss a beat. TWITTER FANS ARE DEPENDING ON YOU! Not only were fans of Forward Beat following along but also the 13 celebrities’ fans were also engaging and wanted a play-by-play of the entire day. Alison and I were running, yelling (thank goodness for 3 years of sorority recruitment), and frantically tweeting the day away. Here are our Do’s and Don’ts for live tweeting an event.
DO make a list of the Twitter handles of everyone and everything important before the event, so you’re not searching frantically while the event is going on. By creating a one-page shortcut list can help maximize your time with tasks such as quoting a celebrity or reaching out to sponsors who support the event. You’ll thank yourself later for this.
DO know the official hashtag(s), and use it in every tweet related to the event. By including hashtags, your twitter handle can gain new followers, get more favorites, and the most importantly, get those re-tweets. Alison and I could rattle off all the hashtags to the celebrities so they could then use it in all of their tweets. They were impressed we knew our stuff so well. Therefore, being a leader the day of the event is key!
DO KEEP YOUR PHONE CHARGED. No one’s got time for zero percent battery y’all.
DO use pictures, videos, emojis, and fun apps like Periscope. Using Periscope is a great strategy because followers of @forward_beat got to see live coverage of the entire Rally. From #TeamXfinity racing around in a Mini Cooper, to them singing along with ‘Nashville’ hunk Chris Carmack (known for the famous quote of 2003, “Welcome to the OC b**th! Also, let me just tell everyone, I was very calm, cool, and collected the whole time, but 13-year-old Kelly freaked out when seeing Chris Carmack. You still got it Luke Ward. #blessed).
— Forward Beat (@Forward_Beat) October 3, 2015
DON’T create an #excessivelylonghashtag for your event. No one will read it and no one will care. Simple is always better. Plus, Twitter is only 140 characters so every little bit counts!
DON’T surpass your tweet threshold, aka don’t tweet too much. People will get sick of you and will unfollow you. Loser.
DON’T only promote your own content. The re-tweet button is there for a reason. Although I mentioned early to always sound like you know what you are talking about, your followers might have better insight, so go ahead and share the love on Twitter.
DON’T ignore questions tweeted at you. Do you know the answer, or know someone who does? Do you have similar questions? This is a great way to spark a conversation and get things flowing. A big aspect of live tweeting is getting people to engage, so go ahead and tweet and favorite away!
So there you have it folks. Whether you are live tweeting a delicious hot chicken meal at Hattie B’s or getting down to Honky Tonk at Tootsie’s, live tweeting can happen wherever in Nashville, or anywhere for that matter. Don’t worry Rally, Alison and I will be back. Maybe next time a boy band member can be our teammate *cough* Nick Jonas or Harry Styles *cough*. Just sayin’.