Yesterday, I got a text at dinner from a fellow social media geek (Thanks Casie!), telling me the best Twitter news since, well, Twitter.
For social media managers, this means one less thing to get frustrated with our business partners about. Before, it was all about the 2:1 ratio rectangular image (which so many people either didn’t understand, or chose to ignore.) 1024×512 px – I will hold those dimensions in my social media brain for years to come.
This was a unique-to-Twitter image size. It didn’t matter as much on desktop (though it still drove me crazy there) but on mobile, were 80-90% of Twitter users enjoy the social media platform, it meant that if you didn’t use this image size, the pictures usually looked terrible.
This was me before the news, when it came to telling people to STOP posting non-Twitter-friendly images.
This is me after the news. Mainly because I can cross this particular pet peeve off my list.
Here are 3 things (I’m hoping) this Twitter news will change.
1. No more cut off heads. I never understood why people insisted on Tweeting images directly from their phones that weren’t taken in landscape mode or cropped to the Twitter wide image size. Because every vertical photo in the history of Twitter (that may be a stretch, but you get the point) was sure to have a line up of smiling, happy people doing something fun except THEIR HEADS WERE CUT OFF!
The new Twitter image announcement should mean that we can stop the beheadings and actually see Tweets with faces again!
2. No more quote graphics where we only see three words of the quote. The same principal applies here. All those wonderful square quote graphics you see on Facebook? They’re square. Until yesterday, they were cropped into Twitter size, meaning rectangular. It was like reading a redacted bulletin from the government. Now, they should be more readable.
3. Better, quality engagement for brands. When you’re looking at total engagements or engagement rate on Twitter, someone clicking on an image counts as an “engagement.” When images were cut off, clicking on an image was the only way to see the full graphic. That meant, if your goal was getting someone to click a link, reply to your post, etc. you were diverting engagements away from your real goal. This way, the whole picture is there. If people are clicking on an image, they’re really interested, because they’ve seen the whole image before clicking. That SHOULD mean they’re extra engaged, more clicks, more replies, etc. I think I hear the hallelujahs already.
There’s on downside, mostly for me, personally, and social media purists. It just means that brands who handed social media off to the “youngsters” or the interns, or to old-school marketers who didn’t understand how to effectively use Twitter can continue in blissful ignorance of how they were shooting themselves in the foot and giving their followers a less-than-social experience on the platform.
They can still continue to post not-engaging photos, blurry pictures, pictures taken of a panel of people from the back of the room — things that this new Twitter change won’t affect at all. Plus, there are other social channels, like Instagram, that marketers can focus on ruining.