Dragonflies provide a clue as to how to use Twitter for business

Dragonflies emerging from our pondIn our garden we have a small pond. Over the last few years it has become home to a population of dragonflies. All through the year, you can see the nymphs lurking in the pond gradually growing to about 3cm long. They look quite fearsome at that size! Then at some point in June, they all decide to emerge at once.

The first year we had then, there were three nymphs who emerged. This year, the emergence happened on Saturday and in the afternoon there were more than twenty of them hanging off leaves gradually drying their wings out ready to fly. It was quite a sight, as you can see.

All this got me thinking about how they “know” when to emerge. I guess it must be some chemical signal that says that today is the day and there must be factors that influence it.

So what’s all this got to do with Twitter?

Close up of an emerging dragonflyTweets are notoriously short-lived. There are so many of them that most tweets live less than a few hours on anyone’s feed. If you are going to reach the people you want to, then you need to know when your audience is going to be there. We can’t send chemical signals, like the dragonflies do, to decide to all meet at a certain place but we do have an equivalent: the “hour”.

If you are interested in tweeting to people in a specific location, you will find an “hour” to suit you. Find when it is and then add its hashtag to your tweet. In our area there are “#malvernhour”, “#herefordhour” and “#worcestershirehour” to name but a few. Similarly there are hours for interest groups as well. The times of hours do vary, so you need to find out when the one you’re interested in is.

Once you have tweeted, then you can be on Twitter during the appointed hour and join in the conversation. You never know where it might lead!

I haven’t yet checked is there is a “#dragonflyhour” where I can share my pictures, perhaps I’d better go and check.