In general, the aviation community makes less use of social media than other groups. But just one quick search through Twitter, Facebook or Instagram demonstrates a healthy and ongoing online aviation conversation.

For those who haven’t paid much attention, Twitter might seem like just a place where people gossip about their personal trivia: where they are, where they’re going, what they ate today. But that was so five years ago – if it was ever completely true.

Today, Twitter serves as a powerful medium to exchange useful information, and to broadcast your message to an audience that’s actually looking for it, and eager to receive it. If you haven’t started Tweeting already, consider your next aviation trade show. You’ll be amazed how much richer and well-informed your experience will be if you follow along – and contribute to – the ongoing show dialogue.

Here are a few guidelines to get you going.


  1. Include #bizav when you want to be part of a broader conversation.
  2. Tweet often. Use your judgment. Once a month won’t be effective. Too many can be annoying.
  3. Find people with interesting tweets and follow them.
  4. Use MT for modified tweet if you need to edit a retweet so you can add your company handle.
  5. Proofread. It’s easy to make mistakes typing with thumbs. Be professional.
  6. Search a hashtag before using. Make sure you won’t be tangled up in an inappropriate conversation.
  7. Capitalize the first letter of multiword hashtags (i.e. PerformanceVector). It’s easier to read that way.
  8. Save room for images with your hashtags to maximize views.
  9. Find an event-specific hashtag such as #HAI_EXPO15 so your tweets join the overall conversation.
  10. Make connections. Retweet, exchange messages, extend compliments when they’re due.


  1. Make your hashtag too long, because #ThisIsReallyHardToReadAndPointless.
  2. Include symbols in hashtag (i.e. ampersand or plus sign). Hashtags only read letters.
  3. Hashtag your brand name. Instead, use something relevant and interesting that others will want to join.
  4. Use too many hashtags. At a minimum, you should have more message than hashtags.
  5. Feel obligated to use a hashtag. If it’s not intended to be part of a larger conversation, don’t hashtag it.
  6. Use generic hashtags. Your messages will get lost in a sea of unconnected noise.
  7. Pitch sales all the time. Focus instead on news, tips – anything your audience would find useful.
  8. SHOUT. It’s not polite to use all caps. Plus, most people will quickly tune you out.
  9. Say anything you wouldn’t want to see in traditional media. Because if you do, it just might be.
  10. Be careful when creating a hashtag. It’s easy to combine words that convey an unintended meaning.


This column ran in the February 26 issue of BlueSky Business Aviation News.