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Cross-posted from Adfero Insights.

Some 200 or so smartly dressed young professionals sit with their cohorts amidst the dimly lit backdrop of The Hamilton. Almost all of them are peering over tablets and smartphones, while simultaneously watching the presentation on stage.  No, this is not your typical night at the cozy DC music venue, but rather a meeting of the minds, a gathering of DC’s PR professionals, digital strategists and social media managers… its #TwitterDC 2014!

So, what does Twitter have in store for 2014? Peter Greenberger, Washington’s Director of Sales at Twitter, sets the stage for the rest of the morning’s conversation: “The goal for 2014…make Twitter a critical component of each phase of your [public relations] campaign.”

Quite the bold statement, but check out the facts:

  • 1 billion tweets are sent every two days
  • Twitter is the #1 source for breaking news
  • 76 percent of active users access Twitter via mobile devices

What’s more? Your country’s legislators are leveraging this medium to connect with their constituents:

  • 100 percent of the U.S. Senate and 97 percent of the House of Representatives are active on Twitter

This begs the question, how can you insert your organization into the conversation, or, in the spirit of Twitter’s real-time activity, how do you “win the moment?”

Jenna Golden of Political and Advocacy Sales at Twitter talks tactics that will streamline your audience targeting and help you capitalize on that opportunity to get visibility for your brand:

  • Create content to build voice
    • The content you create should support your organization’s mantra and grow its influence. Keep your tone conversational (rather than formal) and content relatable, and it will resonate with your audience. You can use keyword targeting to boost your organization’s voice. With this tool, if someone tweets about a relevant issue, they will be served a promoted tweet.
  • Use an editorial calendar
    • Create and schedule content in advance to ensure you are reaching all relevant target audiences, highlighting key issues and preparing for specific events where appropriate. As you plan out your content, keep in mind that you can push this content to tailored audiences – audiences you create using users’ web browsing behavior, email addresses and other CRM data and Twitter IDs.
  • Prepare to be spontaneous
    • Keep on the lookout for breaking news that you can use to elevate visibility for your organization and generate advocates, like Human Rights Campaign (HRC). HRC created a Twitter strategy once they were tipped off that a professional athlete would be coming out to the media. It resulted in this tweet, after Jason Collins of the Washington Wizards announced he was gay, and in turn, over 7,000 re-tweets.
  • Be nimble – respond in real-time
    • Be sure to stay in tune to current events that may warrant a response from your organization. Take for example AARP who made light of Jeff Daniels’ Emmy acceptance speech, when he joked that his only previous win was a Barcalounger for AARP’s “Movies for Grownups” award, with this tweet.
  • Activate supporters with direct calls to action
    • Literally. With lead generation cards, once a user expands your tweet, you can give them the option to respond to a call-to-action by submitting their email address.

Last but certainly not least, we cannot forget promoted accounts, promoted tweets and promoted trends, all of which allow you to grow and scale your follower base and even take the top trend spot on Twitter.

With a team of agile and creative content creators who are up-to-date on the latest trends and have a thorough understanding of what makes your audience tick, or even better, what makes them get behind an issue, your organization has the capacity to win the moment in 2014.

But that’s not all.  Stay tuned for a #TwitterDC 2014 follow-up to this post as we share insights from Marc Heedt, Brand Strategist and Social TV Specialist at Twitter on the new-fangled strategy of Twitter integration with television viewing, which will take this year by storm.