The following was originally posted to the IAEM LinkedIn group. We have a long way to go when >2500 people attend a conference but only 140 were active on social media. A conference like IAEM is a great place for people to pratice.
There were some really good discussions occurring on Twitter during the IAEM conference under the hash tag #IAEM….
Oh, what is a hash tag? That’s a way to pull a series of tweets on Twitter together as one on-going conversation. A hash tag always starts with a “#” and contains no spaces. The hashtag is simply included in a tweet to make it visible to others following the conversation.
Yes, I recognize that expression on your face. You think Twitter is just for posting what you’re eating for lunch and when nature calls? You’re not alone. During the IAEM conference, a group of us met many people like you with thoughts that range from Twitter not being valuable or just simply so overwhelming that it is hard to know where to start.
I am inviting you to (at least) watch the #SMEM conversation. It will help you cut through the noise and find valuable information. SMEM is short for Social Media Emergency Management. Many of the people engaged in the conversation are people like you: professional emergency managers. We’re sharing ideas and engaging each other to learn. You can view it at: http://twitter.com/#!/search/%23SMEM
I encourage you to create a Twitter account and participate in the discussion. There is nothing you need to do to follow the #SMEM conversation; just type #SMEM in the search box at the top of the Twitter screen. Social media (which includes Twitter) is a lot like swimming: no matter how many books you read or people you talk with, it is hard to get until you get wet.
#SMEM folks are a very friendly sort. Feel free to ask a question.
Now, as I was saying…. There were at least 140 people tweeting about what they were seeing during the conference or engaging from afar. If you were not on Twitter, there was a whole other aspect to the conference that you were missing.
Come join us. Or tell us here of your experience using Twitter during the IAEM conference.