In the near future, Twitter feeds may begin to look a little more like Facebook. Twitter has just announced “Twitter Cards,” which are essentially tweets with content previews; for example, if you tweet a link to an article, your followers can see your tweet along with the article’s headline, a snippet of it, @attribution, and an image. How does this work, and what does it mean for your business? Let’s explore.
140 Characters or Less… Plus Visuals
Twitter Cards will come in three different forms: summary (for text and articles), photo, and player (for videos). Now when someone posts a photo, for example, it will appear directly in their follower’s feeds, no clicking necessary. For links, they’ll be able to see a preview of the article or content (title and 200 characters), which will help them determine if they want to click and read more. Twitter Cards will add visuals, making feeds more content-rich and less an endless list of text only. Each card can also include @mentions for the person or group who created the content, and that’s where the real fun begins.
Making Twitter Cards Work for You
Right now Twitter Cards aren’t open to everyone, but they will be soon. The catch is that Twitter Cards don’t just appear because someone posted a link. To take advantage of Twitter Cards, you’ll have to add some simple meta tags to the HTML code of all your webpages. What the code does is allow you to control exactly how your content will appear in a Twitter Card if someone tweets it. You can control the preview text, preview image, and what @mentions are included. To learn exactly what code you need to add to get the right Twitter Card meta tags, visit http://pastebin.com/tprrzX9n and get the raw data codes.
Why You’ll Love Twitter Cards
Twitter Cards are excellent tools for anyone who wants to maximize their social media presence and reach. While a link to your content via tweet has always been a good thing, it used to be up to the tweeter if they included an @mention of your business or not. It might not be until a follower clicked on the link (if they did at all) that they found out who created or provided the original content. Now Twitter Cards enable you to make sure you get an @attribution for every link, image, or video of yours that’s tweeted about. Your business name will be visible to many more eyes this way. In addition, your custom preview gives you a chance to personally convince viewers to read more. This can result in (hopefully) a lot more traffic to your website.
Is There a Catch?
On the surface Twitter Cards seem great, but are there potential downsides? Of course. For one thing, Twitter Cards will take up more space in feeds, meaning that fewer tweets are visible at one time. This could push your tweets out of view, or even worse, it could annoy followers into unfollowing you. Only time will tell how Twitter Cards will shake things up – are you ready?
This valuable marketing article was prepared for you by Kathryn Thompson for SEOMAP – the keyword strategy experts.