ADULT LEARNING GURU: Jeff Hurt, Executive Vice President, Education & Engagement Velvet Chainsaw Consulting 11.9k followers | 32.8k tweets
Jeff Hurt @JeffHurt
has always been this nice, friendly, funny guy—and all of that shines through in his online personality. You could use his Twitter as a filter to find all that’s new in the meetings industry, as he retweets and directs followers to everything he finds interesting. His blog, "Midcourse Corrections," is an invaluable source of advice, and clearly people are taking it: Most of his blogs have tens of thousands of views, and one is in the hundreds of thousands. It’s because reading Jeff feels like sitting down with a friend over a cold beer and talking about the industry. He shares what he sees and knows, and you willingly listen—because it’s fun, and you always learn something.
MEETINGSNET: What is your mission when you tweet?
JH: My primary mission is to be helpful to others. I actually follow a formula that the well-known educator and speaker Angela Maiers shared many years ago: 70 percent of my tweets are to provide resources and helpful information to the meetings industry; 20 percent answer specific questions that others have posted; and 10 percent are self-promotional.
MEETINGSNET: What are you trying to become known for?
JH: My goal is to be a resource for information on meetings, events, learning, and associations. In the 1990s, I was that guy who would tear out or copy magazine articles to share with others—I enjoyed sharing what I was learning. Twitter is a natural extension of that old-school process for me.
MEETINGSNET: Is your Twitter personality the same as your real-life one?
JH: Yep, although I’m usually a little more chatty in real life. I’m not just a walking resource of links to useful stuff.
MEETINGSNET: Are people who meet you on Twitter surprised when they meet you in real life?
JH: Not really, unless they expect my moustache to be black instead of white.
MEETINGSNET: Has Twitter laid the groundwork for meeting people in your career?
JH: Absolutely. It is much easier to connect directly with great thought leaders, experts, and authors through Twitter today than through their managers.
MEETINGSNET: Has it led to business?
JH: It has. People have followed me on Twitter and then later reached out for proposals.
MEETINGSNET: Do you set out to tweet a certain number of times a day?
JH: I typically try to schedule 20+ tweets a day. I’m not online all the time but use tools like Triberr, Buffer, and Hootsuite to share information.
MEETINGSNET: Are your best tweets spontaneous or something you think up over time?
JH: The majority of my tweets are about things I’m reading or find interesting, even the spontaneous ones. However, I’m known to use Twitter to take notes when I’m attending a conference. I just happen to share those notes with the world in 140 characters.
MEETINGSNET: Have you ever had a profound experience on Twitter, one you’ll never forget?
JH: I’ve met some amazing people via Twitter and grown to cherish their friendships. On #EventProfs I met Lara McCulloch, Mike McAllen, Mike McCurry, Midori Connolly, Jessica Levin, Paul Salinger, and many, many others. My Twitter experience with #EventProfs lead to a group of us starting EventCamp several years ago.
MEETINGSNET: How do you differ in your approach to the various social media channels?
JH: I share more personal things on Facebook. YouTube is for my video clips, which often get reposted in Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn. Slideshare is my personal presentation resource. It’s full of my past presentations and slidedecks.
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See what Jeff has written about tweeting from events by downloading our new interactive magazine app.