Monday, February 15, 2010

Twitter for the 2010 AAHPM/HPNA Annual Assembly

In 2009, the Annual Assembly of the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine (AAHPM) and the Hospice and Palliative Nurses Association (HPNA) became the first demonstration of multi-user use of Twitter at a major medical conference.  Part of this was a nice coincidence of events: Twitter was growing in popularity in early 2009, I had just become more comfortable with Twitter after a few months of use, smartphone apps for Twitter became more powerful allowing for non desktop use of the platform.

Some basic stats from 2009's AAHPM/HPNA Annual Assembly: 

  • Tweets During the Conference (Tue 3/24-Sat 3/28 using #AAHPM tag): 224
  • Unique users tagging Tweets with #AAHPM: 30
  • Average number of followers: 220
  • Median number of followers: 70
  • Minimum number of followers: 5
  • Maximum number of followers: 1,424
  • Total number of followers for the 30 Tweeple: 6,621 (not checked for redundancy)

Hopefully this year we can surpass those numbers as we hopefully have more people familiar with Twitter.  To help boost those numbers and spread the word of the good information on hospice and palliative medicine I hope you will join the effort.

So if you:
1. Own a smartphone or laptop with wi-fi AND
2. Are coming to the AAHPM/HPNA Annual Assembly (or wish you could) AND
3. Care about hospice and palliative medicine issues

Then you should be tweeting at the conference.

With over 2000 people in attendance if even 10% of us could be tweeting about this we could make a big impact and create an ongoing network of HPM twitter users and become leaders in communication beyond the bedside.

So this is what you need to do soon so you can start building your Twitter network (if you don't have an account yet or only your brother-in-law is following you). First:
Read the previous post on Twitter for Health Care Professionals.
Read the post on lessons learned from the previous Assembly.

1. Post a tweet using the hashtag (#) of #AAHPM so that other people going can start finding and following you (forming a network of attendees).  Example: "I am excited to meet a lot of my friends at the #AAHPM Annual Assembly next month"
2. Follow my Twitter list of 2010 AAHPM/HPNA Attendees (I will continue to update this list through the conference) and my Twitter list of A-list Tweeters in HPM
3. Feel free to follow the other HPM related Twitter lists in the right hand column of my profile.
4. Try to grow your number of followers by searching interests outside HPM so that you start to be bridge between different networks (say Red Sox fans and HPM or Cheese Lovers and HPM)
5. Post interesting thoughts about HPM leading up to the conference. (Avoid tweeting about patient issues: "I just made someone a DNR!" Bad form and legally dumb)
6. Tweet from your phone and your computer to get use to using both

At the conference
1. Save the search term #AAHPM so that it is easy for you to find other people tweeting from the conference
2. Don't forget to add #AAHPM to every conference related tweet
    2a. If using a computer with wi-fi then use a web based program like TweetChat to automatically add #AAHPM to every tweet.
3. If you don't like tweeting during a talk, write down interesting things to tweet about and tweet at night or in between sessions
4. Start replying to other people on Twitter about the conference
5. RT good tweets with #AAHPM hashtags.

And don't forget to come to the Social Media Workshop Friday AM and you can meet other Twitter users face to face!

Good luck Tweeting!

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