Twitter has been making some big moves in the last several months, most of which Twitter claims will increase accessibility for new users. We have seen and heard rumors of Twitter’s upcoming changes. These changes include; changes in Twitter feed layout, Vine video messaging capabilities and an increased amount of ad capabilities. With these three changes I believe Twitter is preparing to go toe to toe with Facebook over the next several years.
Vine Video Messaging
Vine announced it will provide its users the capability to send videos to their followers through its messaging platform. The update is a relatively big because Vine not only added a direct messaging feature but also the ability to send videos through it.
Vine has been trying to catch up with Instagram (a Facebook owned company) since the release of Instagram video and is attempting to bridge the gap between the two social networks. There are several flaws in the system such as; users have to record videos on Vine and cannot upload from their gallery, users cannot send videos to groups and users cannot send still images only videos.
Why am I talking about Vine? Many articles I have read mention that the release of video messaging through Vine will allow Twitter to work out all of the kinks before it launches the feature through its own Direct Messaging system.
New Twitter Layout
In February the Internet was a buzz when Mashable’s Matt Petronzio posted pictures of a different Twitter feed layout that appeared on his Twitter account. The layout featured boxed tweets rather than the typical feed as well as enlarged photos and links. Since that time Matt’s Twitter feed has been returned to normal but it was too late for Twitter to avoid a slew of articles and complaints that it was too “Facebook.”
Since February Twitter has included the ability to tag users in photos as well as allowed users to add up to four images at a time rather than the standard one photo per tweet.
The combination of these two features could bring a forward a new revolution in Twitter. Users and brands would be able to load four photos at a time that would be seen simultaneously on followers’ feeds without having to click to “enlarge” the photo.
New Twitter Ads
The Wall Street Journal reported that Twitter will be adding 15 new ad types to their advertising arsenal. Twitter already provides ads that link users directly to a brand’s products or website however; one of the new ad types shows the ability for users to directly download an app just by clicking the advertisement. This would be huge for app developers as most users access Twitter through a mobile device. Another rumored advertising method is the “click-to-buy” feature that will allow users to impulse buy directly from their twitter feed using stored credit card information.
Twitter execs are planning on making some major changes on how Twitter will look and function over the following year/s. Just like Facebook, Twitter seems to be adding more features for marketers than seeking to improve overall user experience. This means most changes will help them increase their overall revenue through ad sells. These potential changes may make it possible for Twitter to convince Facebook users and brands to change their marketing strategies from primarily Facebook centered to primarily Twitter based. Especially since many brands have seen a diminishing return on their Facebook business page. Many users and businesses feel that they have more control over their Twitter feeds and personal interactions with potential customers than they might on Facebook. These three changes along with businesses dissatisfaction with Facebook may be what Twitter needs to finally overtake the social media landscape (in the long run of course).
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