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Tips on live-tweeting to farmers from an ag event.

We are just finishing a busy time for ag trade shows and conferences. During these events, I saw a number of ag marketers successfully using social media to connect with farmers and provide them with real-time updates.

Farmer interest to connect with ag companies and brands through social media shows no signs of decline. According to the 2016 Successful Farming Media Consumption Study, 33 percent of all farmers use social media. A solid percentage of the farmers, but it’s more interesting when you break it down by age group. The most active by age group are:

  • 74 percent under the age of 37;
  • 55 percent between the ages of 38-47; and
  • 44 percent between 48 and 57.

Social media is a destination for the younger generations of farmers for information, not just entertainment. Like consumers, farmers use it to connect with brands and industry influencers.

One way to help with those connections is to provide live updates on ag events like fields days, farm tours, trade shows and conferences. Facebook Live has become a popular option, but Twitter also remains quite effective. Live tweeting allows your ag brand to provide news, data, video and images to your customers in quick, easy-to-digest bites that they can engage through likes, shares and comments.

Here are tips to make your Live-Tweeting from an ag event more engaging:

Preparation. Don’t go into the event cold. Have a reason and a plan for what you want to tweet. Familiarize yourself with the official – and unofficial – hashtags of the event. Identify the Twitter handles of those involved. Engage your followers; alert them that you will be live-tweeting from an event.

Content and context. The key to an engaging tweet is relevant content. You’re trying to tell a story (albeit in just a few characters). Provide information, observations, presenters, photos, props, video and technology. According to TweetBeam, tweets with images get 150 percent more retweets.

Use a variety of engagement methods with your tweets. Presenters’ quotes (make sure they are accurate), video, photos. Post a poll. Use video of speaker or make your own event update. Retweet speaker insights, support with a photo of speaker or a slide with easy-to-read insights. Be selective; make the information you share count. Give proper attribution if you share others’ thought-leadership.

Add context to the tweet so your followers can better understand and appreciate what you found interesting and why. After all your followers might not be at the event and need some context.

Reference the Twitter handles of speakers, companies and events. Also use the event hashtags. It’s a way to get new followers, likes and retweets from their followers.

When possible, link to previous tweets, blogs or materials referenced at the event (e.g., research, video, infographics, other multimedia).

Quality images. Capture high-res photos and video. Initial low-res images don’t reproduce well online. High-res allows you to get the facial expressions of speakers, product features or the details of an on-screen infographic.

Engage. Respond to questions and comments you receive from followers promptly. Connect with followers who might be at the same event. Ask them questions or react to their comments. Like and retweet your favorites. Thank those who retweet your messages and follow them back. It keeps the conversation going.

It’s a Wrap. Recap the event for your followers. Post a short video with your thoughts and key takeaways. Or use your tweets to pull together a blog summarizing the event. Your followers will appreciate the thoughtful commentary on the event. Plus, you can then tweet about your blog.

Post-Event Learning. After the event, analyze your tweets. Note why certain tweets or which links created more engagement than others. Then apply this knowledge to your next event.

Use these tips and you’ll be on your way to better engagement with farmers while delivering more value to your social media channels.