Tips on how to use Twitter before, during & after your training workshops

I had a blast recently, teaching a brand new course called Transforming Workplace Learning through Social Media.  Of all the Social Media tools we talked about, Twitter was the one that caused the most perplexed brows.  A couple of people requested more information on how to use Twitter in training.

Ask & yee shall receive…

Ideas for how to use Twitter to help you prepare for training

  • Ask participants to introduce themselves, for example with the name, location & 1 thing they want to learn from the workshop or what their biggest challenge is facing them that’s related to the workshop topic.
  • Do some research on your subject matter using Twitter.  Use a tool like Twellow  to research folks on Twitter who are tweeting about your subject matter.  Contact them ahead of time – ask for ideas and/or resources.  Ask if they’d be willing to answer questions from your participants during the workshop.

Ideas for how to use Twitter during a training

  • Have participants use Twitter to ask questions during the workshop – have a live tweet stream to show the Q&A’s as they come in.  Note: To do this you’ll need to create a hashtag for your workshop.  A hashtag is simply a term you create prefaced by # that helps users find tweets related specifically to your workshop.  For the ‘Transforming Workplace Learning through Social Media’ course I recently taught, I used #JISocMedia.  If you put that hashtag into the search box in twitter you’ll come up with all tweets related to the course.
  • Tweet a link to a poll like GoPollGo to ask participants where they are currently at with the subject matter.  Click here for an example.
  • If you’ve been able to pre-arrange a Twitter chat with someone knowledgeable about your subject matter do it live during the workshop (see bullet above under the ‘prepare’ heading).

Ideas for how to use Twitter to anchor the learning (eg after the training)

  • Note: remember to use your workshop hashtag so people can find your workshop content easily.
  • Continue the conversation.  Send out updates after the workshop via Twitter.
  • Ask a question about your workshop subject matter &/or offer further resources.
  • Ask folks how they’ve been applying their learning.
  • Recommend people to follow on Twitter who are subject matter experts in your workshop content.
  • If you use a follow-up resource package, send a link to it via Twitter (if you’re okay about making it public).
  • Do some informal evaluation – ask participants questions via Twitter about their experience with the workshop, with the subject matter.

Want more ideas?  See Jane Bozarth’s Social Media for Trainer’s book; she has a specific chapter on Twitter.

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