Using Twitter as a Feedback Gathering Mechanism

A colleague sent me a link to the Great Idea Conference’s Twitter Feedback area. The interesting thing is that all of the conference’s feedback, from thoughts on the overall program to thoughts on specific sessions, is in the form of tweets.

A couple of things worth mentioning here:

1. What a cool way to get immediate written feedback in a conference situation! Are there other situations that lend themselves to this kind of quick response?

2. Even though the conference attendees are talking about members and associations, the focus of their businesses and their conference, many of their insights could hold true for constituents. Take a look at these:

RandiSumner: #Ideas09 adding socialmedia communications with members into the staff job descriptions –that’s a take home for me.

SmartBriefScoop: Sit with member who gets a report from you, see what they do with it. Do they find the relevance? Don’t fall into the ‘mature trap’ #ideas09

So when it comes to using Twitter to gather feedback whether in a specific situation or in general, is this something most of you GovLoopers are already doing? And if so, do you have any tips on managing it? Seems to me like managing a slew of incoming tweets is only one of a few potential downsides to collecting feedback in this way.

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Dennis McDonald

One thing you will find is that there are at least two schools of thought about Twitter – the first is that it is a good tool for carrying on semi-realtime conversations with a targeted group of people (“followers”) and another is that it is just another mass communication device that can be used for communicating (one way and two way) with many people without having to really know any of them. The interesting thing is that Twitter wasn’t really designed for either of these applications so it has deficiencies in both areas, but that fact hasn’t stopped its growth in popularity.

Dennis McDonald

Chris Treadaway

I would look at and possibly monitor Twitter Search to mine the universe of feedback that people throw out there. You can do it by going to the site regularly or setting up RSS feeds for your most important search terms.

Sometimes it can be helpful to quickly learn what at least tech savvy folks are thinking/saying to their friends/colleagues.

Chris Treadaway
company –
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Ken Mac Garrigle

As long as the comments aren’t flashed on the screen (behind a speaker) while they are boring, I mean enlightening, everyone in the room….. What’s everybody laughing at? Me??? Would you care to share with the rest of the class what you found so funny? Oh, wait – you just did… (-: