BJ Emerson’s “One Thing I Can’t Live Without…” + 5 Hashtag Tips!

BJ Emerson, VP, Technology, Tasti D-Lite

We are back with another round of our new series, “One thing I can’t live without.” Our first one kicked off with Charlie Cole, VP, Online Marketing, Lucky Brand Jeans, followed by Dan Scott, Chief Marketing Officer, Scott Kay Inc. This week, we continue the series with BJ Emerson, VP, Technology, Tasti D-Lite.

While our series is, of course, business related and therefore less scandalous than, say, your favorite Tuesday night TV, we hope it will be something to look forward to as it will reveal one thing someone in your industry (who you may even know), can’t work without. We’re talking about anything that you and your colleagues, as retailers or multi-channel retail solution providers, cannot do your jobs without. And we’re taking that beyond the obvious.

Our aim is to bring you some tactical tips straight from the experts’ mouths. Hopefully one or two of them will help you out in unexpected ways. And without further adieu, we bring you BJ Emerson’s, “One thing I can’t live without…”

1. As an online marketer and retailer, what’s something you can’t live without? And we don’t mean coffee. We mean anything from a technology tool to a partner, to an employee or a team, to a cool trick you do on Excel to a shortcut you take in your programs. Anything you think your job would be impossible to do without.

Conference Hashtags.

2. Great! Can you please explain?

On Twitter, hashtags connect conversations through a common keyword preceded by a pound (#) sign. A simple search on Twitter will yield all of the related content from those who have included the hashtag within their tweet.

Hashtags in general are a powerful way to connect around a common topic. When used at a live event, an interesting dynamic unfolds that enhances the physical conversation and interaction.

3. Why can you NOT live without this?

I attend and speak at many different conferences and the back-channel conversation that is accessible through a hashtag can be just as valuable and insightful as the event itself. Many times hashtags can provide a glimpse into the mind of the audience and reveal things that may go unsaid otherwise.

Once you’ve had a great conference hashtag experience, you’ll understand the potential they can have so don’t be surprised if you feel incomplete without them at other events.

4. How often do you use it and how long have you been using it?

I try to be part of the back-channel conversation at every conference I attend and started using them about three years ago.

5. If lightning struck tomorrow and you suddenly didn’t have this one thing, what would you do to improvise?

I would create a mind-reading device and display attendee thoughts on a big screen for everyone to see. (Yikes!)

6. How can other people get this too?

At your next event, find out what the hashtag is and use it in your tweets. Setup a search to get visibility to the content.

5 Benefits of Using Conference Hashtags:

1. Pre-event conversation gets the buzz started, others learn about the event and can follow along remotely.
2. Introductions are streamlined as attendees connect on Twitter before meeting in person.
3. Real-time virtual conversations during sessions allow everyone to participate where their voice and insights may not have been heard otherwise.
4. Speakers and event producers can collect valuable unfiltered feedback from attendees.
5. Post-event tweets allow the conversations and connections to continue.

BONUS: And what’s the non-work related thing you can’t do your job without? This is where the coffee, or anything else comes in…

Sunflower seeds keep me awake as much as caffeine. A messy habit, but don’t try to take them away from me.