It’s 2019, and one thing is for sure: Social media continues to be a great way for colleagues, mentors and incoming industry professionals to communicate and network. In fact, at American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA), social media has played a big role in how we connect with our members — not just during conference season, but year-round. Of course, when it comes to conferences like AIHce EXP, networking platforms provide opportunities for you to stay engaged in conversations — even when you’re not in the room!
Staying connected with IH/OEHS professionals around the globe
Social media is an invaluable tool for regularly communicating with industry professionals around the globe. One great way to do that is to find and follow key players within the community.
A great place to start, especially if you’re a student or new to the industry, is universities. Follow official social media accounts of universities as well as those of professors (if they’re active online) to stay informed in real time. Don’t be shy — remember that the key word in social media is “social,” so make sure you participate in conversations that are relevant to your specialty.
In addition to universities, professional organizations in our field are also highly active on social media. You can follow heavy hitters such as Environment Protection Agency (EPA), Centers for Disease Control (CDC), National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), and Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to receive regular updates and participate in conversations within the community.
Make the most of your time at AIHce with social media
Although AIHA has a very active social media presence, 2017 was the first time we really saw quality engagement — specifically related to the AIHce conference in Seattle — and we continue see increased engagement leading up to our 2019 event in Minneapolis.
That’s all thanks to you!
"Social media can be an exceptionally helpful tool to share your story or your company's story."
~Carey Lohrenz, aviation pioneer and opening keynote
So, how can you make the most of your time at AIHce with the help of social media? We’ve got a few tips for you:
- Don’t neglect the hashtag. Our main hashtag across all networks is #AIHceEXP, so be sure to include it in all your posts during the conference and even while exploring Minneapolis. Pro tip: Add the conference hashtag to your Twitter name or bio for the duration of the conference.
- Do your homework on the speakers and instructors. If you’re not familiar with a speaker, check out his or her website, writing, and social media activity. Why is this important? It helps you become familiar with this individual’s expertise and communication style, and it lets you see how this person interacts with others at events — both online and offline. Follow speakers on social media before the conference. This will give you an opportunity to engage with them and help you stand out in their mind when it’s conference time.
- Remember, sharing is caring! You’ve done your due diligence, and it’s go time. From the opening keynote to the closing session, opportunities to share from the conference abound. Because Twitter is a public platform, it is the best option for you to share insights and key points in real time. A few things to keep in mind:
- Statistics are always great to share.
- Stay away from inside jokes and points that don’t stand alone.
- Always give credit to the speaker in your tweets.
- Always use the conference hashtag.
- If there are other people tweeting from your session, retweet them instead of sharing the same exact statistic.
But wait — there’s more! Although #AIHceEXP is the official hashtag of the conference, that’s not the only hashtag you can use to engage with other industry professionals.
- #IAMIH – Join the movement! Help create awareness about the profession: take a selfie, show yourself in action at work, or open a “window” into a day in the life! This is great for Instagram.
- #IHProPath – Speaking to the professional career path that IHs take, from student through senior professional.
- #IHHeroes – Anyone who stands up for worker health and protects workers’ lives is an #IHHero. Let’s give them a shoutout!
- #SafetyMatters – The focus here is on teen safety via a campaign started by past AIHA President, Steve Lacey. #SafeTeensAtWork is also great to work into the conversation. Connect with Safety Matters task force chair, @PIDGirl/Jennifer Maclachlan, on Twitter and AIHA’s director of government relations, @AihaPolicy/Mark Ames, who oversees the effort and all things policy related.
We love engaging with you across social media, so be sure to follow our official channels (Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube and Instagram), and if you’re speaking at AIHce EXP 2019, we’ve got some great promotion tips for you.
Berrak Sarikaya is a natural conversation driver with an undeniable belief in the power of community. A proven content strategist and speaker, she resides in Seattle, WA. Follow her on Twitter.