How to Participate in a Twitter Chat

Don’t miss out on the conversation in Twitter

Hand holding a smartphone with the Twitter icon in front of a global map.

Edar/Pixabay

With millions of users across the globe, Twitter has become one of the top social media apps. A feature that many uses is Twitter chat, a great way to have conversations focusing on a specific hashtag, such as a television show, holiday, or news event. If you’re looking for some tweet chats to join, or maybe you want to know how to join or follow a live Twitter chat, here's how.

How to Find a Twitter Chat

Finding a Twitter chat isn’t too difficult, and there are several ways to find one. The quickest and easiest way to find one is within Twitter itself. Many companies and users create hashtags to get conversations started to promote a TV show, a movie, or a game.

Find Twitter Chats Using Hashtags

  1. Open Twitter in your browser or launch the Twitter app.

  2. On the Twitter website, enter your search criteria starting with a hashtag (#) in Twitter's search box. Within the Twitter app, tap the magnifying glass, then search using the search bar.

    Twitter webpage showing current newsfeed.
  3. On the website, select the magnifying glass or press enter on your keyboard. In the app, tap the magnifying glass or search.

    A hashtag search within the Twitter homepage.
  4. That's it!

Find Trending Twitter Chats

The other way to find Twitter chats within Twitter is to see what’s trending.

  1. Open Twitter in your browser and log in.

  2. On the far-left side of the page, there should be a section labeled "Trends for you." This is where you can find the hottest Twitter trends.

    A Twitter hashtag search for Web30.

    In the Twitter smartphone app, tap the magnifying glass to find the hottest trends of the day page.

  3. Select any of the topics that interest you.

    Twitter website showing the trends settings for customizing your newsfeed.

    If you don’t find anything interesting, select Change and tweak your location settings to get different trends. In the Twitter app, scroll down to the bottom of the Trends for you section and tap Show more to see other trending topics.

  4. You should see posts related to the hashtag you selected.

Find Twitter Chats Using TweetDeck

You could do a simple Google search, but there are several tools and websites out there to make finding a tweet chat easy. Some of the most popular are TweetChat, TwChat, TweetReport, tchat.io, and Twubs.

All of these are browser based, but will load quickly even on smartphone mobile browsers. You can even use TweetDeck to make it easier to see all the messages related to a hashtag. Here’s how to set it up.

  1. Go to TweetDeck’s website and login with your Twitter account.

    Tweetdeck login website.
  2. The first time you login, you’ll get a brief rundown of how it works. Select Get Started to continue.

  3. You should see several columns, such as Home, Notifications, Messages, and Trending. Select the Plus (+) on the far left side to add another column to show your searches for different TweetChats.

    TweetDeck homepage showing default columns.
  4. From here, select Search.

    Options to add for new columns in TweetDeck.

    Photo editor highlight the Search.

  5. Enter your search criteria and press Enter. You should see a new column with the hashtag you searched for.

    TweetDeck showing the results of a hashtag search.
  6. You're done!

How to Join a Twitter Chat

Once you’ve found a Twitter chat you want to participate in, you can join in on the digital conversation. While you can join a chat in Twitter, it’s not as user-friendly as other websites.

  1. Search for a hashtag subject using the Search box, then press enter or select the magnifying glass.

  2. The page that pulls up has everything containing the hashtag.

  3. To chat, select the Tweet button and make sure you address your tweet with the hashtag and any account you want to see your message. This can be done by adding an @ in front of a Twitter account. Example: "@JaneDoe Can you believe it's been 30 years. #Web30"

  4. To keep up with the conversations, you’ll have to refresh the page or continually select new results as it appears at the top of the page.

    Results from searching for a specific hashtag within the Twitter homepage.
  5. That's it!

Participating in Twitter Chats Using Third-Party Tools

Some of the tools mentioned earlier are not only for finding Tweet chats, but participating in them as well. Plus, they make participating in tweet chats much easier. Some of the automation features like tchat.io will automatically add your hashtag at the end of your composed tweet. All you’ll have to do is comment and press the Tweet button on their site, and voila, you’re part of that Twitter chat.

Twubs is similar in functionality. Once you enter a hashtag, Twubs will take you to a page specific to your entered hashtag. There is a large message box that will automatically paste in your hashtag once you select it. Plus, it has the live tweet chat scrolling at the bottom half, giving you a feeling of being part of a live conversation.

As was mentioned earlier about TweetDeck, you have a column dedicated to your Twitter chat. Within it, you can filter your results even more or reply to individual tweets with a simple click.

Why Join a Twitter Chat

Twitter is a unique platform since it has a smaller character limit per post. If you don’t have much time to read a blog, article, or short story online, Twitter can give you a quick synopsis of a story. This applies to a chat as well. You can quickly interact with other visitors quickly and efficiently, and you aren’t obligated to carry on a long conversation about a specific topic.

It’s also a great way to promote yourself for employment, a work proposal, a product, or even an article query to a potential editor. It’s an excellent and cheap way to interact with customers and even friends in a nearly unlimited size group. No need for bland texting when you have interactive Twitter chats to living up any conversation.