Twitter is currently in the process of implementing a slew of new features, changing the ways users are being connected with each other – and brands with their audiences. Not all of these features are available for every user yet (though you are more likely to encounter them through using the new Twitter on desktop), but they potentially present some big changes to engagement as we know it. Read on for the juicy details.
One small, quality-of-life change is that quickly unfollowing an account you may have followed accidentally now won’t result in a notification for that user–if you act fast enough.
Next, and more significantly, is that Twitter is now creating a more prominent encouragement for private sharing. When users click the “share” button at the bottom right of a tweet, where the option to send a post as a DM appears, the tab that pops up will now show a short list of suggested users to share the tweet with. These users are, according to Twitter, the “people you always DM.”
While this new feature is user-friendly and makes certain actions quicker, it also reveals Twitter’s part in a new widespread trend toward on private sharing over public. Now, it will be just as easy to send one user a specific post as it is to simply press ‘retweet.’ What this will mean for engagement remains to be seen.
Thirdly, for the new Twitter, mobile Twitter, and Twitter Lite (all on desktop), a new account-switching feature is rolling out. While users used to have to install an extension for their browser to switch accounts without logging out, Twitter will now be integrating the feature internally. You will be able to find it in the drop-down menu from your profile.
Finally, the other big change Twitter has implemented is the addition of profile ‘cards’ that appear in the notification center when a user gets a new follower. Now along with the usual notification of the new follower’s public name, a card will appear with the entire content of their bio, plus a follow button. This means that follow-backs may be quicker and greater in number, though profile clicks will suffer.
If gaining followers is your only concern, then this change is a boon. However, if engagement is your goal, this new feature may mean less of that. Because users can now see your bio without having to click through to your profile, areas of interest such as header image, pinned tweet, and links will be encountered less often. Seeing a full profile page is a vital tool for increasing a brand’s visibility, so while this change makes vetting profiles faster and easier, it comes at the cost of engagement.
Those are the big updates, but to keep up with weekly goings-on with social media, check out the weekly Ghost Briefing.