If you read my earlier posts on hashtags you’ll see mention of Hashtag Chats. What are hashtag chats, how do start or join one, and what are their advantages?

Hashtag Chats Twitter Follow

What are Hashtag Chats?

Because hashtags are a way of categorizing and drawing attention to a Tweet (or Google Plus message) you can create conversations around them. I explained in. A Hashtag Chat is just a conversation that takes place during a set time period, between people who post messages using the same unique hashtag.

In my post Why Do I Need To Use Hashtags I explained hashtag feeds. Do a search for a hashtag and you get a feed page of all messages from everyone that include that hashtag at any time. Anyone can replay to, share and favoriteย  these messages. A Hashtag Chat uses this search feed feature with its own special hashtag for conversations. Participants are given this hashtag name, the topic of the chat and the time and day, or days, it’s being used. They can then join in a live conversation with each other by posting messages with that hashtag added. The conversation always exists so anyone can follow it later.

Twitter is the main platform for Hashtag Chats because Gplus has the hangout feature which serves the same purpose.

Read on and it will become clearer.

Why Do I Need To Use Hashtags?Read Full Article here: Why Do I Need To Use Hashtags? | Blogging Sueblimely by Sue Bride

Why Do I Need To Use Hashtags?Read Full Article here: Why Do I Need To Use Hashtags? | Blogging Sueblimely by Sue Bride

Starting Your Own Hashtag Chat

  • Decide on a unique hashtag to identify your chat. (the Chat Hashtag)
  • Decide if you want just people you invite to join or want to try to draw in others too.
  • Work out the topic for your chat. This might be just a general chat between friends or family, a wide topic (such as blogging), or more specific (ways to get visitors to your blog).
  • Decide on a time to host your chat. This may be a one-off or a reoccurringย  at set intervals (such as weekly, monthly, every Monday and Wednesday …. )
  • Invite people you want to join by giving them your Chat Hashtag, telling them the time of the chat and what the chat’s about.
  • At the set time start the conversation by posting a message using your Chat Hashtag.

Joining a Hashtag Chat

To join in the chat simply use the Chat hashtag in every message you want to get seen by the chat participants.

Unless you have very few contacts, don’t chat from your own timeline. You can’t follow along with the conversation because the chat messages will easily get lost among those from your normal contact list. Instead, find the chat so that the only messages you see are those from the others joining in the chat.

The simplest way to find the chat is to type the chat hashtag into the search bar (don’t forget to include #). This will take you to a page of posts that are only using the Chat Hashtag. Here is an example of the #blogchat

Private versus Public Chats

No Hashtag Chat is completely private because anyone on your contact list can see your hashtag and find the chat. It’s less likely it will be found by non contacts if the Chat Hashtag doesn’t include a real word. At the time of writing this #vbxnydl was still available.

If you want more privacy don’t use Hashtag Chats or don’t reveal anything in them that you don’t want others to see.

Why hide the chat when it’s to your advantage to get it found. Include your chat topic in the Chat Hashtag. If you can’t decide on an original tag find one that’s hardly used.

The Advantages of Hashtag Chats

The whole point of chatting on Twitter or Google Plus is to widen your social media influence and attract new, or more dedicated, targeted followers.ย  Chat members can have intelligent discussions, ask questions or answer others. The chat host is providing a service which can get them noticed. Those who share their knowledge benefit too. Getting yourself known as skillful in your area plus being truthfully helpful is the very best form of self promotion.

Hosting regular quality well advertised chat sessions yourself will get you noticed.

Use Hashtag Chats to find new targeted contacts. Add them to your own contacts. You don’t have to take part or even be there at the time the chat takes place as you can browse through past chats. The same applies to publicly advertised chats. If personally invited to a chat it is best to be there or to let the host know you can’t make it.

You can follow or join in Hashtag Chats to learn something new or increase your knowledge.

This is an indication of how much some hashtag chats are worth for promotion with some chats valuable enough to attract sponsorship.

Regular Public Hashtag Chats

You don’t need to run your own, or be invited to, a Hashtag Chat to take part in them. There’s a large number of publicized, regularly held, chats on all sorts of subjects. Join in during one of the listed times and actively engage in the conversation. Show your knowledge and expertise by making relevant comments and answering questions. You’ll get more targeted followers and increase your overall social media influence.

Tools, Resources and Ideas for Hashtags

  • Where do you find hashtag chats to join?
  • What are the popular chats?
  • What are the best hashtags to use?
  • Which tools and resources to use to help you use hashtags to their best advantage?
  • Ideas for Hashtag chats

I’ve already written much of the content listed above but don’t want to put it all in a post. Instead I’m compiling it into a free e-book and Google document so that you have all the information at hand to refer to. It includes information on a little tool that I find invaluable.

I will write a post announcing my free resource as soon as it’s ready.

In the meantime you can still read my previous hashtag posts:

  1. An Introduction to Hashtags
  2. Why Do I Need To Use Hashtags
  3. Hashtag Tips for Facebook, Google Plus and Twitter

For those of you who already read the posts: Have you started using hashtags more now?ย  If not do you use hashtags or take part in hashtag chats?