The hashtag keeps us together.Meetups. They’re fun, we all agree, right?

But schedules don’t always match up, so what’s a girl to do?

Follow the hashtag.

And now, boys and girls, I’ll tell you a story.

In my early days of Twitter, especially with the business account I started in 2009, I really wanted to connect with people in Orange County. While following and listing people for that purpose, I also found a meetup called Social Media Mastermind, Orange County.

For years, I followed the people, loosely followed the hashtag, and finally started attending this year. It was cool because I felt like I knew some of the people before I actually became part of the group. (That really helps with the anxiety of meeting new people, by the way.)

One of the long-time #SMMOC members, Dennis Carpenter, recently moved out of state. A business trip brought him back to Orange County and he made time to attend the meetup. (Also, it was nice to see how lovingly greeted he was  — what a group this is. But I digress.)

“I’m so glad to finally meet you,” I said.

“But I’ve known you for years!” he said.

Dennis was convinced that we had met in person before. I had to remind him I started coming to this meetup in January of 2014.

So I said,

“The hashtag keeps us together.”

(If you don’t know the Captain and Tenille song “Love Will Keep Us Together,” listen here.)

Which, of course, people said I should tweet, post laughter.

This group has a sense of humor, what can I say?

But I Know You

Yes, back to the point.

A few conversations and post-lunch debriefs later, he still couldn’t believe we had never met in person before.

Friends, this is the beauty of social media. You really do connect; that is, if you want to.

In retrospect, I should have taken a selfie for Dennis to round-out this story but I didn’t think of writing it until after he left the lunch group. In this photo by Oscar Gonzalez, he is behind me.

What’s the moral to the story?

Follow a conference, meetup, or ongoing event hashtag all year round. The fun can continue in tweets and Instagram posts and, who knows, you may find that you have a great group of friends.

And since I started going to the group I made a Twitter List. Those tweets may or may not have the hashtag, but it’s a good way to help support your new friends and to get to know them a little better.

What’s your hashtag story?

About Bridget Willard

Observing human behavior and predicting it is what makes the way I approach content management different. I mirror your voice in my social media management. I analyze your dreams when I consult. I think deeply and respond appropriately. I have time to work on your business. Do you?

9 Comments

  1. witzshared on November 15, 2014 at 5:37 pm

    What’s the best way to find a local conference, meetup, or ongoing event # to follow?

    • Bridget Willard on November 15, 2014 at 5:39 pm

      It depends on your interests but everyone today was excited about meetup.com.

      I’d start there, my friend.

  2. Carol Stephen (@Carol_Stephen) on November 17, 2014 at 7:04 am

    What a great idea! Especially for a meetup that meets more than once a year!

    • Bridget Willard on November 17, 2014 at 7:06 am

      Exactly. This one meets 2-3 times a month, too. Thanks, Carol!

  3. Ruby | Social Succes Marketing on November 17, 2014 at 12:19 pm

    It does make sense to get a hashtag for regular meetup..just like twitter chats.

  4. exit178 on December 4, 2014 at 4:47 pm

    How did I miss this post! Well I found it now and it’s great. But I do have that Captain and Tenille song in my head now. LOL

    • Bridget Willard on December 4, 2014 at 4:50 pm

      It’s an earworm fro sure, Patricia! Thanks for stopping by.

  5. […] The Hashtag Keeps Us Together […]

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