The week before last, I was browsing away on Mashable (as you do) and saw a blog post announcing a big Twitter update. I was a bit confused, because I’d already had the update for a month at least.
Not sure why I got the early roll-out, but, overall, I’m liking the new Twitter.
Now, I’m one of those people that barely uses Twitter.com. I use Twitter itself a lot. I tweet, on average, 17 times a day. But I seldom use Twitter to do it. I use Hootsuite on my computer, or the Twitter app on my phone.
I use Hootsuite because it has way more utility than Twitter.com. I can go through my RSS feeds and schedule up tweets for the day, see what my favourite tweeps are doing at a glance, and manage multiple accounts inside Hootsuite. It’s awesome.
I’m sure Twitter must feel some of this pressure, as well as the pressure it must feel from being the world’s #2 social network. I recently learned that a whopping 40% of twitter users have never tweeted. Twitter is more complicated than Facebook in many ways–understanding the etiquette and the jargon can be intimidating for some.
Twitter’s newest update is meant to make the network a bit more user-friendly.
Here’s what you need to know:
- Stats are larger and easier to find:
- Larger cover images & Profile Pics: Cover images are now 1500 X 500 px, Profile pics are 400 X 400.You’ll want to put something in your cover image that says something about your personality and your passions.
- Real-time notifications: if you are on Twitter, you’ll see that you’re starting to get real-time notifications, similar to Facebook or G+.
- Tweets are now separate from Tweets & Replies: Twitter is now separating your tweets from your conversations. I get why they are doing this–Twitter is a conversation tool, and reading just one side of the convo is kind of like listening to someone beside you on the bus having a phone call. But it takes some getting used to. I like to follow people that like to have conversations (I’m a huge conversationalist myself), not people that are just broadcasting out in one direction all the time. Now, in order for me to check to see if they are @mentioning others, I need to click to the “Tweets & Replies” tab.
- Bigger engagement = physically larger tweets: If you tweet something out that gets lots of engagement, like retweets or conversations, Twitter will make the size of that tweet physically bigger.
- “Pinned” tweets: this is my favourite of all the upgrades. I can now “pin” a tweet to the top of my timeline. Anyone that comes to my twitter account will see it first. I plan on doing this with all of my new blog posts.
Overall, some really positive changes to the User Interface. Twitter has also been experimenting with ads, or “Promoted Tweets” for quite some time, now. I’m currently experimenting with the ads for a future blog post–are they worth the investment or not?