Live Tweeting: Central Asian Awareness Day and Navruz

For my Multimedia Production class, I downloading Twitter for the first time and live tweeted an event on campus at the University of Wyoming. On Saturday, April 22, the Central Asian Student Association (CASA) hosted their annual Navruz dinner. Navruz is Persian new year, a celebration of spring and new life.

My tweets are available to view at @hellobye74933381 on Twitter. The approach that I used was public relations-oriented rather than journalistic. The tweets have a promotional tone, focusing on the fun elements of the event and giving followers a video or photo of each performance. The goal was to create fear of missing out (FOMO) for those who did not attend the event and promote cultural awareness for my university.

Zamira Salim, one of the performers for UW’s Navruz dinner, is a professional dancer from Uzbekistan.
Photo courtesy of Zamira Salim.

I enjoyed the Navruz dinner and performances, but I did not enjoy this assignment. I do not have any personal accounts on social media and while I was live tweeting, I felt like I did not have an opportunity to fully pay attention to the event. It seemed disrespectful to be on my phone during the performances and I felt detached from real life.

There are several things I would do differently for this assignment, as I missed some of the assignment requirements. One thing that I forgot to do was to interview two people at the event. I could have easily interviewed someone at my table or a member of CASA, but I forgot to do this.

Additionally, I did not give as much information as I should have for each tweet (the who, what, when, where and why). I found it difficult to get people’s names when I was hearing them for the first time. I felt pressured to make the tweet as it was happening and didn’t feel like I had time to fact check or get the correct spelling of names. Overall, the situation felt rushed but I think with practice, it would be easier to keep up.

The videos I took during my tweets were low quality. Unfortunately, I think it was just the quality of my phone. Sometimes I could not get my camera to zoom in while recording video and the venue was dark. As a first-time Twitter user, I did not realize that muting the sound canceled audio for my tweets. Some of my videos unintentionally do not have sound because I canceled the noise to not distract people around me. For future assignments, I should practice using the platform before posting.

I do not plan to be a social media coordinator or manage social media accounts for my future employer, but understanding how social media works is still important for a career in media. A situation where the posts are planned in advance and not happening in real-time would be better suited for my interests.

My goal is to work in advertising, much of which occurs on social media. People don’t really enjoy advertisements, so promoting something in a way that doesn’t seem like an ad would increase engagement. I think social media does a good job of this. When content is shared with followers, people feel like they’re receiving a service rather than an advertisement. I still need more practice engaging with consumers to make effective ads.