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Social Media Lesson: Twitter and the Interactive Presentation

August 12, 2014 / Blog interactive presentations, powerpoint add-on, presentation tips, social media, Twitter

In recent years, the word ‘tweet’ has come to mean more than just the chirping of a small bird.

Since its successful launch in 2006, Twitter has become one of the most popular social media platforms on the Internet today. It recorded 500 million registered users in 2012, and the numbers have only been growing since then. It’s time to consider that a majority of your audience make part of this huge number.

Incorporating elements of social media in your presentation makes it more interactive and relatable, especially to a younger crowd, who may be more active in the social media scene. But for users of all ages, an interactive presentation is an effective presentation.

Twitter gives you the ability to reach out to people who aren’t even in the auditorium with you. Twitter can be a valuable presentation tool if you’re presenting at an industry event (or any other occasion where you expect to have a large audience).

Use a hashtag (or two)

Hashtags are a bit tricky for social media beginners, but it’s the most useful Twitter tool for your presentation. It’ll help create a back channel of discussions. Presentation coach Lisa Marshall suggests the use of two hashtags: one that’s unique and specific to your presentation or the event you’re speaking at, and another that covers the general topic you’re covering.

The first one is moderates all discussions about your presentation into one place, while the second allows non-attendees to see the tweets about your presentations. Just remember that the hashtags you choose shouldn’t be too long or complicated. Flash them in bold letters in your PowerPoint presentation.

It’s also become the norm to have hashtags for events. If that’s the case, ask the audience to use the official hashtag instead of trying to come up with your own. Their tweets can be seen by those watching out for the event at home.

Display a Twitter feed in your PowerPoint presentation

Here’s how you can have a real conversation with your audience: Refer to their tweets at the end of your presentation.

Include a twitter feed in your PowerPoint presentation by following this tutorial by Liz Gross. (It might seem a bit complicated, but the hashtags you specified will make things easier.) You don’t have to go into each and every tweet, but try to address some of the conversations that came out of the points you raised.

And if you’re really interested in expanding the conversation, you can encourage your audience to follow your (or your company’s) Twitter account. Address any other questions or comments there. This will turn your interactive presentation into a full discussion outside the auditorium.



Curtiss, Kristen. “How to Create a Hashtag to Build Engagement at Your Event.” Constant Contact Blogs. 2013. Accessed August 12, 2014.
Hiscott, Rebecca. “The Beginner’s Guide to the Hashtag.” Mashable. Accessed August 12, 2014.


Featured Image: Shawn Campbell via Flickr