#notatDMAI11: the non-conference

It seemed like everyone in the tourism industry was in NOLA for #DMAI11 last month. Well everyone except for a few lonely people on twitter who felt like they were missing out. What started as a playful conversation became an incredible occasion to connect with other tourism professionals on twitter.

Troy (@travel2dot0) mentioned the #notatDMAI11 hashtag in a tweet and a few of us started to run with it. While the real #DMAI11 conference attendees listened to Dom Sagolla speak, one of the co-creaters of Twitter, we had some random tweets like my “Twitter has 140 characters. #notatDMAI11” tweet. But the non-conference hashtag was quickly evolving into something more than that and within less than an hour, we had a #notatDMAI11 twitter list and a non-conference non-logo logo, courtesy of Beth Conway.

Next came the idea of hosting a #notatDMAI11 twitter chat. It was the perfect opportunity to show the community aspect of hashtags and the learning potential of twitter, with or without a conference. The chat was scheduled for that Friday, the last day of #DMAI11, and focused on using social media at conferences. For more info on the chat, check out the #notatDMAI11 twitter transcript [pdf]. By the end of the chat, only three days after the hashtag was created, there were over 270 #notatDMAI11 tweets by more than 50 twitter accounts.…

Conference Hashtags

Tweeting DIYA lot has changed in the social media world since October 2010 but most of the basics in Hashtaggery (how to create a hashtag for your event) have remained the same. Here’s an update:

1. Think: choose a hashtag that can easily correlate to your event

What type of abbreviations can you use? If there will be live-tweeting at your event, make sure you choose something that can be easily typed. Keep it short and sweet but not so short that it becomes confusing.

Should you use the year in it? I’ve seen a lot of hashtags that use “2010″ or just “10″ as a date. Twitter search history lasts only a few days so there’s no need to differentiate your annual events by adding the year to your hashtag. Remember that people will be live-tweeting and it takes an extra step to add numbers on a mobile device.

The thought process behind this hasn’t changed. Since my original post, I’ve upgraded to an Android phone (from a Blackberry) so typing numbers in a hashtag is more difficult now but my keyboard (Swiftkey) auto-suggests words and hashtags so leaving off numbers in a hashtag is not as crucial. Just keep in mind whether you want to use the hashtag year-round or only specifically for the conference.

2. Research: are your choices already being used? …

The “social” aspects of a conference

Last week was the Illinois Governor’s Conference on Tourism and even if you weren’t attending in person, you could have attended virtually by following the #ilgc hashtag. Now if you’re thinking “No one at my conference will be tweeting” then you’re way off. Here are some quick stats from the Illinois Governor’s Conference (ILGC): Number…

How to be “social” at ILGC

I’m attending the Illinois Governor’s Conference on Tourism next week and, like with any event, will be using social media throughout it. Feel free to join in!


If you have a twitter account, follow the #ilgc hashtag to see the twitter conversation revolving around the conference.

What’s a hashtag? A hashtag is a word or phrase following a # sign in twitter. When you click on it, you’ll be taken to a list of all tweets that include the hashtag. It’s an easy way to follow any conversation. Whether you’re using twitter.com, tweetdeck, hootsuite or a mobile device to tweet, set up a search for the #ilgc hashtag and save it as a column for easy access. If you’ll be tweeting from your laptop, I still recommend using tweetdeck or hootsuite if that’s what you’re familiar with but another great option is tweetchat. Head to the #ilgc tweetchat room and login with your twitter account. It’ll add the #ilgc hashtag to all of your tweets.…

Want to host #SoMeT?

The 2010 Social Media Tourism Symposium (#SoMeT) was a huge success and now Dave Serino, Gammet Interactive and founder of SoMeT, is accepting RFPs for the 2011 SoMeT. The Social Media Tourism Symposium ‐ #SoMeT – is a combination of travel, tourism, hospitality and meeting industry professionals sharing ideas and learning more about how social…

#SoMeT or Bust!

To say I’m excited about SoMeT is an understatement. I’ve been waiting an entire YEAR for next week to come. Last November I attended #dmmi09 (DMAI’s Destination Management & Marketing Institute) in Indianapolis and as soon as it was over, there was talk and anticipation of #dmmi10. For whatever reasons, DMMI is no more but in its place, the incredible Dave Serino created #SoMeT (Social Media Tourism Symposium).

A case study for social conferences

The conference hasn’t even started and yet the hashtag is not only well-known but being actively used. And it’s been active for MONTHS. How did that happen? Social branding, my friends. I don’t remember exactly when Dave chose the hashtag but I know it was before February = over 9 months. Yes, that long ago.

SoMeT is special because the public was involved from the beginning. The SoMeT Facebook page has been the hub for this conference. Destinations were asked to submit RFPs and then WE had a chance to vote for our favorites in the form of a Facebook contest. In the next step we were asked to provide suggestions of who WE wanted to hear speak at SoMeT.

And then there was the tattoo.…

Blogworld Expo

I’ve had this post on my to-do list for several days but I’ve been under the weather so I’m just getting to it now. Better late than never, right? I did not attend Blogworld but followed the very active #bwe10 hashtag from home. If you’re new to twitter: many conferences use a specific hashtag so…

Hashtaggery (how to create a hashtag for your event)

Hashtags are a great way to organize tweets around conversations and events. If you’re new to twitter, check out this Twitter Help Center page about hashtags. Creating a hashtag is easy but a lot of thought must go into the process. These steps will walk you through creating a hashtag for your event but can also be used for creating any type of hashtag.

1. Think: choose a hashtag that can easily correlate to your event

What type of abbreviations can you use? If there will be live-tweeting at your event, make sure you choose something that can be easily typed. Keep it short and sweet but not so short that it becomes confusing.…

So you’re going to a conference

With the use of social media, more and more people can now experience conferences virtually. Whether you’re attending in person or just following along via a hashtag, here are five tips to help you get ready to use social media at a conference.

  1. What’s the hashtag? Hashtags are a great way to follow the conference on twitter. If you’re leading the conference, create the hashtag early and publicize it! Put it on all of your registration information, printed and online. Be sure to include your social media icons here as well. When creating a hashtag, make it short but not so short that it becomes confusing. Use “10” instead of “2010” or consider using no year at all.…