Twitter has secretly been planning many new and exciting changes to their layout and usability for all Twitter users. Unlike Facebook updates, which tend to go very badly and cause people to “leave Facebook forever”, Twitter did a great job introducing changes to the public and getting its users on board. Just last night I stayed up ultra late to switch to the new layout and create a new profile banner (speaking of, let me know what you think of my Twitter banner!). Here are the key changes you need to know about and how to use them to your marketing advantage.
Profile and Cover Image
Twitter has updated the user profiles to look more like, well, Facebook’s design. The profile has a cover photo/banner at the top, and the profile picture laid over the banner. Underneath the profile picture is your same old description, location, website address, and photos and videos. On the far right, visitors receive a recommended list of who to follow and what is trending so users don’t miss out on these common Twitter features. The home page is pretty much the same, except your banner is visible above your profile picture in the top left corner.
How to Use It: Make sure you upload a profile picture that is a photo and not a logo (except for rare exceptions). Also make sure you cover photo is relevant, creative, and accurately represents your brand. Abide by Twitter’s optimal cover photo size by making your banner 1500 px wide and 500 px high. I recommend changing your picture often to keep visitors interested and coming back.
Underneath the cover photo is a navigation that allows visitors to view your Tweets, browse your photos and videos (redundant but useful I suppose), see who you follow, see who follows you, what Tweets you have favorited, and more. The feed below these options will reflect the visitor’s choice. This allows visitors to choose exactly which content of yours they want to see.
How to Use It: This was an option on the old layout, but it was on the top left corner. This design makes it more aesthetically pleasing and easier to access. One way you can use this to your advantage is to add photos that are bold and eye catching to important posts. Since users can now filter Tweets that are only photo and video related, you can get more engagement out of your Tweets by adding relevant and exciting photos to important Tweets.
Follower and Following Lists
More with making things cleaner, Twitter has made viewing who you follow and who follows you easier to sort through. All of these users on Twitter are graphically organized with their banner and profile picture along with their description. This block format, reminiscent of Pinterest, allows users to easily sort through and digest options.
How to Use It: Start finding new people to follow and grow your own following!
The Pinned Tweet feature allows you to choose one Tweet to feature at the top of your profile. The only rule is it cannot be a Retweet.
How to Use It: Run specials, promotions, or exclusive content in a Tweet then pin it to the top of your profile. For example, if you are offering a free whitepaper, pin it to your profile! It can also be a highlight of what your Twitter “brand character” is all about so visitors get a clear sense of who you are. There is a bit of pressure choosing the featured Pinned Tweet. I am still trying to decide the best Tweet to pin on mine!
Twitter’s new profile also allows visitors to view the “best Tweets” you have produced. These are the ones that have experienced the highest engagement on Twitter.
How to Use It: Look through the Tweets that are featured and find a common theme in all of them. Start using that technique in all future Tweets to increase engagement overall.
Mobile Photo Improvements
Now Twitter’s mobile platform is more photo-friendly with the ability to tag up to ten people in a photo and to share multiple photos in one Tweet.
How to Use It: Brands can now fully engage with their audience by using this multiple photo and high tag option. You can post multiple photos that tell a story or send a message about your brand and tag relevant users in each photo for optimal sharing.
What do you think of the new layout? Let me know in the comments or on Twitter @HS_Writing!