Tips and Tricks for a Successful Twitter Chat

By Andrés Uribe, Expedition PR

Want to connect with your community in a fun and casual way? Well a Twitter Chat, sometimes called a Twitter Party, might be for you.

First off, what is a Twitter Chat? A Twitter Chat is a way of using Twitter to create an online, public chat forum that revolves around a central conversation theme. Participants are given a unique hashtag to use during the chat, a host or hosts to follow who will help control conversation and chat flow, and a date and time to join in on the chat. Chats usually last 1-2 hours, and many offer giveaways throughout the chat.

bigstock-House-Sparrow-Passer-domestic-18531119Besides being fun and entertaining for all parties involved, Twitter Chats offer companies a way to connect with and grow their audience in a personal way. Given the live nature of the chat, participants aren’t seeing the usual company messages that have gone through multiple rounds of edits and revisions, but rather something raw and real that they can connect with. This raw nature of the chat can become a double-edged sword, and it is for this reason that preparation is key to a smooth and successful Twitter Chat experience. Here are a few things you should do before hosting a chat that will help make it a success:

1. Send out an RSVP form. When promoting your Twitter Chat, it’s a good idea to send out an RSVP forum with your promotional tweets. Gmail users can easily create their own forum by going to the Drive and creating a new Google Form. When creating the form, ask for participants to tell you their name, Twitter handle, email address, where they heard of the chat from, and if there is anything they’d like to discuss during the chat. With this information you’ll be able to do things such as.. send out a reminder Tweet/email before the chat starts, easily contact winners should you decide do giveaways during the chat, and better include participants by discussing their topics during the chat. Continue reading


View from the UK: Paywalls Are A Global Story for News Media

By Tracey Johnston, London, UK

In June, editors and news business managers head to Bangkok for the World Newspaper Congress.  The programme reveals the hot topic on everyone’s mind – business models in the digital age and, specifically, paywalls.

Most of the main US media outlets have already implemented paywalls of one type or another, whether metered (offering a number of articles for free and then charging for further access) or hard no-pay, no-access models.

In the UK, the paywall debate has not been settled as conclusively.  News International’s London Times sits behind a hard paywall and the media group – part of News Corporation – is planning to do the same with its tabloid title, The Sun, later this year.

News organizations worldwide are adopting paywalls for their online and mobile content.

News organizations worldwide are adopting paywalls for their online and mobile content.

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Best Apps & Sites for Work and Play

The Spring 2013 Round-Up Selected by the Expedition PR Team

As technophiles and tech fanatics, we are always looking for new apps and sites that allow us to work better, or simply have more fun. Here is a round-up of our current favorites.                                                                                                                                                                                           

Best Apps and Sites for Work

  • Among the most used apps is Skype. We all have Skype accounts. It helps to collaborate across states and countries. Some of our client calls are on Skype, especially with startups. Many of us also use Skype outside of the office, for video calls with friends and family. As video is a great way to discuss projects and brainstorm ideas, we are now moving our team meetings to Google Hangouts.
  • Parlez-vous allemand? Some of us do, but we sometimes need help. Our German team members use Űbersetzer by Tensift to choose the right words for the localization of materials. The app translates texts in 45 world languages, so there are lots of opportunities for geographic expansion for us. Watch out for the Chinese edition of this post.
  • Staying up-to-date on current events is a ‘must’ when you’re working with the media. One of our team members recently discovered NowThisNews, a video news app that allows users to stream short news videos (3 min or less) to their mobile phone. The videos are fast-paced, to the point, and cover a variety of topics ranging from Lil Wayne and Purple Drink to Cyprus’s economic collapse.
  • As news junkies we also love FlipBoard. This app consolidates updates from news sites and social media channels into a personal magazine.  Bye-bye Google News Reader, we are not too sad to see you retire. And, don’t forget to add a picture in your next Facebook and Twitter posts. They just pop out more when reading the FlipBoard magazine.
  • Last but not least, at the office we heavily rely on DropBox for file sharing. Long live the cloud.


(c) Expedition PR. Created with Manga Comics Camera.

(c) Expedition PR. Created with Manga Comics Camera.

Best Apps & Sites for Play

  • We agree with Rihanna. Please don’t stop the music. iTunes is ubiquitous;  Spotify is almost ubiquitous.  Pandora is a good tool for music discovery, except that is has a limited repertoire for each playlist.  Our latest discovery is Songza. This music site and app has a neat ‘music concierge” feature that let you choose play lists based on fun categories, such as your mood (from aggressive to warm), genre, activity, decades and culture.  As we are writing this there is an ‘Indie Apartment Party” play list trending and the music concierge has some songs for us to ‘get fired’ up or at least ‘boost our energy’.
  • Lately, we became a tiny bit obsessed with cartoons. Ever wish someone developed a comic based on you? Now you can do it yourself. Manga Comics Camera is an app that allows you to turn ordinary iPhone photos into comic type shots. Once the photo is converted, you can text “sound effects” and add speech bubbles.  Pow, Pow, Poof.
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Social Media Week: Two Best Practices on How Businesses Can Use Hyperlocal and Social Marketing

By Andrés Uribe, Expedition PR

From left: Jean Alerte – Brooklyn Swirl, Christopher Riegger – Mad Mimi, Luke Luckett – Projectize Media LLC, Karen Tapin – Karen’s Body Beautiful, Daniel Gutzmore – Highbrid Media, Juan Perez – Highbrid Media

It’s Social Media Week in NYC and our local team had the pleasure of attending the “Hyperlocal Goes Social” event this Tuesday hosted by the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce. Panelists discussed best practices for using social media with a hyperlocal marketing strategy. Here are two especially effective strategies that were presented:y Andrés Uribe, Expedition PR

1.            Unique, local hashtags: The founder of Brooklyn Swirl, Jean Alerte, demonstrated the power of using a unique and local hashtag when promoting his frozen yogurt shop located in Bed-stuy. On opening day Jean was able to attract 500 customers and keep up a steady stream of new customers throughout the summer with his #BrooklynSwirl campaign. He did this by making sure that everyone who entered the store knew that if they were going to talk about Brooklyn swirl, they should use the hashtag #BrooklynSwirl.

This strategy is as simple as it is powerful. A unique local hashtag has the ability to create a ripple effect throughout a community that will Continue reading