Amybeth Hale – Research Goddess

Cool Tool Alert: Hashtag Chats
July 6, 2009, 8:00 am
Filed under: Cool Tool Alert, Twitter

Admittedly this isn’t anything terribly new, but I would bet money that most of you have never participated in a hashtag chat before! So, what is a hashtag chat?

First off, let’s define a Hashtag: it’s putting the pound (#) sign in front of a word or a phrase in order to track conversation about that word or phrase on Twitter. So for example, some of the most popular hashtags at the writing of this post included #iranelection, #jobs, #journchat, and #bachelorette. This means that a lot of the conversation being had was about the election in Iran, people looking for jobs, folks discussing The Bachelorette, and people participating in the hashtag chat, #journchat. Which leads to the next definition…

A hashtag chat is an organized conversation via Twitter that is followed using a hashtag term. The chats are usually moderated, have either pre-set questions or chat leaders, and usually happen at a pre-determined day and time on a semi-regular basis. Since these conversations happen real time, and in the public Twitter stream, they can be participated in by pretty much anyone who’s interested.

Here is a list of some of the more popular and best organized hashtag chats, as provided on

  • #cmtychat – a weekly discussion about the business of online communities, Fridays from 12-1pm CT, hosted by @sonnygill and @bryanperson
  • #journchat – a weekly conversation on Twitter between journalists, bloggers and PR pros, taking place Monday nights from 7-10pm CT
  • #smchat – a discussion on the power of social media among active practitioners and strategists, taking place Wednesdays at 12pm CT
  • #blogchat – a chat on Sunday nights from 8-9pm CT that was started by @MackCollier to discuss blogs and best practices

There are plenty of other topics, ranging from SEO to K-12 education to healthcare communications and marketing practices, and even cars and the automotive industry. I recommend checking out the organizers who have registered with What The Hashtag here.

I’d also encourage those of you in the recruiting business to check out the #talentnet (or #TNL) hashtag chat run by Craig Fisher and Susan Kang Nam. It’s a hashtag chat specifically for recruiters that takes place the last Wednesday of each month at 9pm Eastern.

Some of you may be wondering why I’m listing this as a “Cool Tool” and the reason is simple: large audiences discussing the same topic. This is like you attending an industry trade event. If you work in a particular industry or function that has a hashtag chat already established, it’s a great opportunity for you to network with these professionals. It’s also a great place to learn about a particular topic you’ve been interested in finding out more about. I’ve also noticed that every time I participate in a hashtag chat – I mean REALLY participate by following the topics and adding value when applicable (there’s a tip) – I typically gain anywhere from 5-15 new followers. And usually the new followers work in some capacity related to the chat.

By the way – if you don’t see a hashtag chat listed in YOUR industry, don’t complain, throw your hands up in the air, and say it doesn’t work for you 🙂 Why don’t YOU start the chat – that’s the beauty of social media. You don’t have to wait around for someone to create content; you can take the initiative and do it yourself.


2 Comments so far
Leave a comment

Very nice post, thanks man!

Comment by SinerBoy

Your audience might like to peruse the Twitter Chat List: There are 57 chats listed.

Comment by Swan

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