Engaging in Conversation via Live Tweet

I engaged my first live Tweet conversation this last week with the popular #wjchat hashtag. Before this event, I had no idea that these types of events were scheduled in advance, or that people often engaged in them on a weekly basis. I felt very lucky that so many experienced journalism professionals, and the topic (journalism internships and jobs) is relevant to anyone, whether or not they are interested in journalism specifically. This chat is held on Wednesday nights at 8 PM EST.

At first, the chat seemed to be off to a slow start. We introduced ourselves and asked a few questions to get started, but it seemed that everyone was waiting for someone else to answer. It wasn’t until about 8:30 that the conversation really sparked. I was initially tweeting back and forth with @marizary, who had several questions about engaging with bloggers. Though it wasn’t exactly on topic, we engaged several tweets about the topic and how to reach out and talk to them.

The height of the conversation (for me) was when I asked the group about cover letters. From my experience, cover letters are not requested when applying for a job as much as they used to be, and honestly I don’t think hiring managers even read them anymore. Boy, was I wrong. @wcochran was the most helpful in this dialogue. He explained to me that not only are cover letters necessary, they are the key to allowing you to stand out from the crowd, and @SylviaCarignan pointed out that it makes the interview process more personal. An outline of my conversation in the chat can be found in this Storify post.

Because I am only six months from finishing my Master’s degree in Public Relations, I found the conversation to be extremely beneficial. I loved the topic, the participants were knowledgeable and very interested in helping explain their points of view. #wjchat was definitely a great experience that I look forward to participating in soon.

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~ by julieesmer on June 12, 2011.

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