Twitter Chat for Birth Pros

by flowers on March 21, 2011 · 12 comments

Announcement: We’re busy launching the new BirthSwell website to help birth professionals connect with the digital resources to help healthy birth go viral.


Reaching the 2.0 Mom with Your Birth Genius


Birth Pros: we hope we’ll see you at #BirthGenius, a twitter chat where we talk about reaching moms with evidence-based information about birth.  Join Jeanette (@JeanetteIBCLC) and yours truly (@hillaryboucher) future times to be announced!

Past Topics

Taking birth viral: speaking to your audience.  Capture hearts first, minds second.

Going beyond the choir: using facebook to reach new audiences, & take healthy birth viral.

How can we speak to a broader audience about birth while staying authentic to our own values?

Getting Found On Google: Let’s talk keywords and link building!

Open Chat

Putting the “Social” in Social Media–Engaging with Your Followers

When Anything Goes: The BirthPro, Ethics & the Internet

Building Your Online Audience

Web design – strategy and function for the non-designer

Why We’re Launching the #BirthGenius Twitter Chat

We want women to be armed with the best possible knowledge about birth. We believe that when a women googles “birth,” she should find evidence-based information.

And – so that she’ll actually *read* it – the evidence-based information should be packaged up to speak directly, effectively, to her.

Birth pros hold amazing birth genius – knowledge, services, skills , and political actions – that bring evidence-based care to moms.

How do we as birth pros become better communicators – developing spot-on messages, creating websites that speak directly to mothers, and getting top-notch rankings on search engines?

Jeanette and I are working together and learning more about reaching moms. We’ve been trying out new ways to get them to take political action (, learn about birth-related services ( and arm them with evidence-based information about their birth options (

Ok, we admit it – we actually stay up late at night just to talk about how to best reach moms. Because we think birth matters. And because we think now’s the moment.

It couldn’t be more important – the c-section rate is skyrocketing, there’s a crisis in access to care in rural areas, and ACOG is mounting a well-funded attack against birth options. The result, too often, is women traumatized, physically and emotionally, by what could have been a normal, physiological process.

And it couldn’t more more *possible.* Women are seeking out health care information on-line – and trusting it. Social media platforms give old-school community organizing a new life. The playing field isn’t level, to be sure, but national, state and local birth organizations are reaching maturity, with the know-how, energy, and moxy to make it happen.

We want to stay up late at night talking about birth with you, too! We are hosting a weekly chat – #BirthGenius – to talk about communicating with women about birth.

Whether you’re just dipping your toes into the web 2.0 world or you’re a social media maven with a blog and thousands of followers this conversation needs you. Let’s all learn together.

You’re invited to the #BirthGenius Twitter Chat
Next chat date & times to be announced.

Who: Birth Pros who want to arm women with evidence-based information about birth (including midwives, doulas, lactation consultants, and birth activists)

What: We stay up late at night talking about how to reach women about birth. Come join us!

When/where: Times to be announced; #BirthGenius

Your hosts: Jeanette (@BirthwaysDoulas) and yours truly (@HillaryBoucher). Follow us both for updates on each week’s topic!

This your first chat, too?

Here’s how this works.

  • The party’s where the hashtag is at! You can find other people who have joined the chat by watching for the #BirthGenius hashtag. Add your genius by marking each of your tweets with the #BirthGenius hashtag.
  • Apps make it easy. You can follow a party by doing a search on twitter for the hashtag you’d like, and then refreshing the search to read the latest posts. But this gets old fast! There’s a lot of websites that can help you with this – here’s a few we like:                                                                                                  – log in for free and enter the hashtag of your party (#BirthGenius). A stream of your chat’s tweets refreshes in near real time, plus automatically assigns your hashtag to each post you make – so easy!                                                                                                                                               - from the home page, click on the party button. Follow the chat stream on one side of the screen, and keep up the banter directed specifically to you in another stream on the right side of the page.
  • Chat etiquette. It’s ok to “lurk” a bit – at most chats, it never hurts to watch the stream a bit before you start to tweet. At #BirthGenius chats – feel free to jump in! We’re all learning here.

Who we are:

Hillary (@HillaryBoucher) is a birth activist at the local (BirthNet of the Fingerlakes), statewide (FreeOurMidwives) and national level (Citizens for Midwifery) and a birth doula and photographer. She blogs about mindful family living and running a family business with her husband and three children here at …infinitely learning…

Jeanette (@JeanetteIBCLC) is the director of Birthways, a community of doulas in Chicago. Activated by the birth of the first of her two children, she previously worked for more than eight years providing communications support and strategies to national, statewide, and local advocacy groups. She is a doula, board certified lactation consultant, and an birth activist at the local, state, and national level.

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{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

Laila @OnlyLaila March 21, 2011 at 9:32 am

Very excited about this!


Erica March 22, 2011 at 12:00 am

Just discovered your blog, this is great! I can’t wait to “hear” the conversation tomorrow.


flowers March 22, 2011 at 2:13 pm

Looking forward to tweeting birthgenius with both you ladies tonight!


Kate March 22, 2011 at 4:02 pm

Oh Hillary ~ how exciting! You know I LOVE this stuff and believe in it sooooo much! I wish my pregnant body could stay up late with you.

Is there a way to find out how it goes?


L.J. March 22, 2011 at 6:22 pm

I am so excited to read this…for you and for women everywhere. Birth does matter…it is an incredibly important topic for us as women and mothers and I”m so glad you’re opening the channels for women to easily access the facts so they can make informed decisions.

I won’t make it tonight…but I hope to get in on the chat sometime soon!

I can feel exciting things are launching here!


flowers March 22, 2011 at 6:27 pm

Thanks Ladies! You two are both amazing advocates of healthy birth choices for moms! Thanks for all your support :-)


Jennifer Hamilton March 29, 2011 at 2:51 pm

I was so ill-prepared for the labor and delivery of my first born. Yes, I went to the lamaze class and yes I watched videos, but still I had NO CLUE! That being said, I think this is a great idea for new moms to use as a tool for delivering their babies. This could potentially be a place for real advice, not the sugar coated medical lingo that we get from our OBGYN’s


flowers March 29, 2011 at 3:06 pm

I’m so sorry you didn’t feel ready for labor and birth. (My first was a huge surprise for me too. Even though I had read “all the books”). What we’re hoping to do with this chat is help birth professionals get tech and social media savvy, as well as become really clear about their audience and message so that more women can access the amazing info, services and support they offer.

Thanks for the support!


violetsouffle April 7, 2011 at 10:51 am

This is such a brilliant idea! I love when communities spring up to help one another and fill a need in other communities. Social networking is a great way to facilitate that.


Sylvia Santaballa April 14, 2011 at 9:36 am

love it!


Crystal - Prenatal Coach May 11, 2011 at 12:13 am

Awesome! Great idea! I missed the first one tonight but will try to make it next week :)


flowers May 11, 2011 at 8:21 am

That would be great–I love your digital presence and we’d really appreciate your input.

So I’ve got to change the title b/c it’s not so *new* anymore. Well, 8 weeks old is still a newborn right? maybe ;-)


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