Tag Archives: Twitter

Twitter explores interest in paid version of TweetDeck with more analytics

Twitter is testing the waters to see if highly engaged users would be interested in a paid subscription version of TweetDeck. There’s no indication to suggest that such a service will be available soon, but the idea could be to give power users and brands the tools to maximize reach on the service and showcase its real potential.

“We’re conducting a survey to assess the interest in a new, more enhanced version of Tweetdeck,” a company spokesperson told VentureBeat in a statement. “We regularly conduct user research to gather feedback about people’s Twitter experience and to better inform our product investment decisions, and we’re exploring several ways to make Tweetdeck even more valuable for professionals.”

Journalist Andrew Tavani spotted the survey and flagged it on (where else?) Twitter. In the survey, people are asked whether they would like an “advanced TweetDeck experience,” one that would help them keep track of what’s happening in the world, get more insights, and “see the broadest range of what people are saying on Twitter.” If brought to life, this version would be available for an undetermined monthly fee and would provide features to post, view, and receive alerts, trends, and more analytics than the rest of the 319 million monthly active users on the platform receive.

If you’re not familiar with TweetDeck, it’s a social media management tool similar to Hootsuite and was acquired by Twitter in 2011. And while Twitter has rolled out a host of changes and updates, it has done little to really update the TweetDeck experience. So this premium subscription version could be significant, transforming the tool into a more robust command center that lets brands and highly active users manage their presence, especially around how to communicate with followers and handle promoted tweets, livestreams through Periscope, and more.

One of Jack Dorsey’s priorities as Twitter chief executive has been to make the service easier to use, and while there’s a focus on bringing new users onboard, there’s also a need to help existing users optimize their time on the service. An advanced version of TweetDeck could alleviate some of these issues, while also opening up a new revenue stream for Twitter.

Social – VentureBeat

Twitter donates $1 million to ACLU to battle Trump’s immigration ban

Twitter and staff have donated more than $ 1 million to help the American Civil Liberties Union fight President Donald Trump and his immigration ban. With this move, the popular social media platform joins a long list of fellow tech companies that have pledged their support to ACLU’s cause. Following hefty contributions from Google, Uber and Lyft, the ACLU has reportedly accumulated over $ 24 million in online donations over the past few days. According to TechCrunch, nearly a thousand Twitter employees pledged the sum of $ 500,000, which was later matched by CEO Jack Dorsey and executive chairman Omid Kordestani. Among other industry heavyweights, Stripe…

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Twitter shares 2 redacted National Security Letters from the FBI

At the Twitter Flight developer conference in San Francisco on Oct. 21.

Twitter today published redacted versions of two National Security Letters (NSLs) that it received from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in the past two years.

Typically, these information requests are under gag order, meaning that recipients can’t even disclose their existence to their users or the people who are targeted by the requests. But the FBI “recently informed us that the gag orders have been lifted and that we may notify the account holders,” Elizabeth Banker, associate general counsel for global law enforcement at Twitter, wrote in a blog post.

The move comes a few weeks after Cloudflare published a redacted NSL that it received in 2013, and Google in December posted eight it had received. This is the first time Twitter is indicating that it has been served NSLs.

One NSL, drafted in September 2015 by Michelle Klimt, special agent in charge of FBI’s Jacksonville, Florida division, sought information on a single account from December 1, 2014 up until the present. The other, which is dated June 10, 2016 and came from Michael Anderson, acting special agent in charge at FBI’s Houston division, demanded information for an account “from inception to present.” (The term “present” means the date that the recipient processes the NSL.)

Both were addressed to Twitter general counsel Vijaya Gadde. And both letters asked for the names, addresses, length of services, and “electronic communications transactional records for all services” for the account holders in question, whose identities are redacted.

“We continue to believe that reporting in government-mandated bands does not provide meaningful transparency to the public or those using our service,” Banker wrote. “However, the government argues that any numerical reporting more detailed than the bands in the USA Freedom Act would be classified and as such not protected by the First Amendment. They further argue that Twitter is not entitled to obtain information from the government about the processes followed in classifying a version [of] Twitter’s 2013 Transparency Report or in classifying/declassifying decisions associated with the allowed bands. We would like a meaningful opportunity to challenge government restrictions when ‘classification’ prevents speech on issues of public importance.”

In October, Twitter said it had 317 million monthly active users.

Social – VentureBeat

Twitter testing new layout for Moments

Twitter Moments

Twitter is currently testing at least one new layout for its Moments product, showcasing related tweets in a timeline-like format instead of its de facto flipbook-style. Because it’s a test, it’s not guaranteed to actually become available to the masses.

Twitter is testing out a new timeline-like layout for Moments.

Above: Twitter is testing out a new timeline-like layout for Moments.

Image Credit: Ken Yeung/VentureBeat

A company spokesperson confirmed to VentureBeat that a test was indeed taking place, saying that it was limited to a small group of people.

It seems the test is limited to Twitter’s mobile app for now.

Twitter Moments launched in 2015 and became part of the company’s efforts to market itself. While at first it was limited to curated publishers such as BuzzFeed, Entertainment Weekly, Getty Images, NASA, The New York Times, Vogue, and Major League Baseball, it gradually opened up to more celebrities and influencers until every user had access. When viewed, individual Moments appeared in a gallery-like format where you swiped to read associated tweets.

Now, some users are noticing that instead of swiping through Moments, all of the curated tweets appear in a chronological timeline, not too dissimilar from what you’d find on the main Twitter feed.

Since it’s a test, there’s no telling when it will be more widely available and whether it will supplement the current layouts that exist within Moments or replace them.

Of course, there may be some who question whether this was the best use of the company’s resources, especially as Twitter is continually searching for itself. Updating the way Moments appear wasn’t exactly on the list of things that CEO Jack Dorsey highlighted as things he’d consider fixing this year. In fact, eliminating harassment and enabling tweet editing were the two most requested features from users.

The updated Moments design certainly fits in with the rest of the Twitter app, and also looks cleaner, which could go some way in helping users better understand the service, which has been one of Dorsey’s strategies since taking over as CEO in 2015.

Social – VentureBeat

Twitter admits ‘technical error’ in product update impacted video ad campaign reporting

Twitter's logo on display at the company's 2016 Flight developer conference in San Francisco, Calif.

Twitter has acknowledged that it incorrectly calculated video advertising metrics with the result likely impacting some campaigns between November 7 and December 12. The company placed the blame on a “technical error” from a product update made to its Android app and said that the issue has since been resolved.

In a rather opaque statement, Twitter said that it has since notified affected advertisers and is “confident it has been resolved” because it’s not a policy or definition issue. Although not disclosed by the company, Business Insider has reported that this bug inflated video ad metrics by as much as 35 percent.

When reached out for more information, a company spokesperson remarked, “We recently discovered a technical error due to a Twitter product update to Android clients that affected some video ad campaigns from November 7 to December 12. Once we discovered the issue, we resolved it and communicated the impact to affected partners. Given this was a technical error, not a policy or definition issue, we are confident it has been resolved.”

It’s also said that those impacted will be receiving refunds for the overbilling. Sources familiar with the matter shared that while 35 percent appears to be a lot, many affected advertisers will likely be reimbursed $ 1, suggesting that this event may not have that large an impact. However, the fact that Twitter disclosed a metric bug is noteworthy as it seems to be one of the first times the company has had to recalculate ad metrics.

But Twitter isn’t the first one to have to reveal this error. Fellow social media service Facebook has had to humble itself in front of advertisers repeatedly this year, announcing that it has had to readjust metrics multiple times, including for its estimated reach, streaming reactions, Graph API, around how it measured video viewership and more.

Nevertheless, the frequency at which services like Twitter and Facebook are disclosing may cause advertisers to worry, since they’re devoting huge budgets to this promising new age of marketing only to find out that there are discrepancies in reporting, which affects their return — and their trust. Additionally, how will today’s revelation impact Twitter’s relationship with brands as it seeks to keep itself afloat and prove that it’s something to bet big on?

“We will continue to monitor our systems to proactively identify issues. We value our customers’ trust in our service and will continue to provide support and transparency in our partnership,” the company said.

Social – VentureBeat

Twitter COO Adam Bain is stepping down, CFO Anthony Noto takes over

Adam Bain.

Twitter today is announcing that one of its longtime executives, Adam Bain, is stepping down from his post of chief operating officer. Anthony Noto, the company’s chief financial officer, will take over the COO responsibility on top of his current work while Twitter looks for a new CFO.

Bain joined Twitter from Fox Interactive Media in 2010. Noto arrived at Twitter in 2014 after working as co-head of global TMT investment banking at Goldman Sachs.

“As chief operating officer, Mr. Noto will continue to lead the live content business and assume responsibility for Twitter’s revenue-generating organizations, including global advertising sales, data, revenue product and MoPub, as well as global partnerships and business development,” Twitter said in a regulatory filing.

Bain sent his resignation on November 7 and will stick around to ease the transition in the coming weeks.

Twitter has been under pressure for months; Salesforce was reportedly looking to acquire the company — Google and Disney were also reported to be interested — but nothing of that nature has been announced. Recently the company made layoffs.

Twitter did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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Twitter shares jump more than 20% on reports of possible acquisition by Google or Salesforce

At the Twitter Flight developer conference in San Francisco on Oct. 21.

It’s no secret that Twitter is open to acquisition offers, but a new report suggests that the social network has received expressions of interest from at least two notable tech companies — Google and Salesforce.

According to CNBC, Twitter may receive a formal bid “shortly,” with Twitter’s board keen to strike a deal. Though no actual sale is imminent, according to the report, CNBC cites a source as saying that talks are gaining momentum, and something could materialize by end of the year.

Twitter has been suffering growing pains of late, both in terms of user numbers and revenues, which has fueled speculation that an exit to a larger company would be a likely outcome. Twitter’s shares have pretty much been in perpetual freefall over the past couple of years, dropping from a $ 69 high in early 2014 to about $ 14 in May this year. At close of markets yesterday, Twitter’s shares were sitting at $ 18.49, but at the time of writing they’re at more than $ 22, a rise in excess of 20 percent on yesterday. Notably, it’s also the highest Twitter’s shares have been since January this year.


While companies such as Google and Microsoft have long been touted as potential buyers, the addition of Salesforce to the mix is interesting — it doesn’t seem like a natural fit on the surface. Why would an enterprise SaaS company wish to procure a platform synonymous with bite-sized nuggets of information and trolls? Well, Salesforce is known to have missed out on acquiring LinkedIn — which went to Microsoft — so Twitter could offer a way for Salesforce to become more active in the real-time information realm. Of course, it would have to focus any product on business use-cases. Long story short, Twitter is a tempting target due to the masses of data it holds, and this pretty much means it’s an alluring proposition for any firm that feeds on data. That said, it’s hard to imagine a world in which Twitter is owned by Salesforce.

While Twitter’s shares are gearing up to reach their highest point in 2016, Salesforce shares actually hit a six-month low after this news dropped. Make of that what you will…

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Twitter testing Periscope feature that pulls video from external sources


Twitter is testing a feature in Periscope that lets a limited number of broadcasters incorporate video from external sources, meaning that soon you may no longer be restricted to livestreaming video from your mobile device, GoPro camera, or drones. Should this experiment work well, creators could be empowered to spruce up their broadcasts, something that takes a page out of YouTube’s playbook and will likely appeal to influencers.

“We’re always testing new functionality that gives our broadcasters the ability to create great content,” a Twitter spokesperson said in a statement to VentureBeat.

Matt Navarra tweet Periscope

Some users may notice a label for certain broadcasts that reads: “Beta test of new broadcast feature incorporating external video in Periscope.” This feature represents on-going efforts by Twitter to reach out to influencers, something that chief executive Jack Dorsey has outlined as a focal point for 2016.

The feature will allow content creators to kick their broadcasts up a notch, especially as they talk about live events. In fact, one of most recent demonstrations of this offering come from broadcaster Alex Pettitt on Thursday, with coverage of the SpaceX rocket explosion. Instead of pre-recording video and then editing it in post-production, creators will have an easier time posting high-quality video in real time.

The incorporation of video from external sources follows recent changes Twitter has made, including helping creators monetize their work through its Amplify Publisher program and enabling them to add pre-roll ads to their videos. Additionally, the company has included Periscope in that same initiative, which means ads are coming to the livestreaming app for select broadcasters.

In the battle of live video, Twitter is going full steam ahead to capture the attention of creators, a group that remains very much in-demand. YouTube, Snapchat, Facebook, and Twitter are all vying for these creators’ content and audience because that leads to not only more advertising impressions, but also more users and activity across their properties.

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Welcome to Twitter, @Apple

This calls for some congrats Twitter, don't you think?

It’s about time.

Apple has an official verified Twitter account now, as noted today by Business Insider. It has not tweeted once, but it has accumulated 52,000 followers. (It’s listed as joining Twitter back in 2011.) The header photo of Apple’s Twitter profile page is the same image that appeared on the invitation to Apple’s September 7 event in San Francisco — where the company is expected to unveil new iPhones.

It is not clear what the new @Apple account will say. But one thing is sure: It won’t be for customer support. Apple set up the @AppleSupport account for that earlier this year.

Apple operates plenty of other accounts on Twitter, including @AppleMusic and its Japanese and Spanish-language units, @AppleNews and its Australian and United Kingdom variants, the @AppStore, @beatsbydre, and @Beats1.

But for it to hold off for more than a decade on joining the service as a corporation is pretty astonishing, especially considering all of the company’s executives who have Twitter presences: Tim Cook, Angela Ahrendts, Phil Schiller, Eddy Cue, and Lisa Jackson — although, for better or worse, Jony Ive still does not have a Twitter account. (There is the great not Jony Ive account, though.)

Over the years, some have speculated that Apple might one day be the company to buy Twitter. If that ever happens, at least Twitter would be able to at-mention its buyer.

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NYC Sanitation, Scotch Tape & More: 10 Companies With Unexpectedly Good Twitter Content


Back when I was in business school, just a wee lass interning for a consulting firm, one of my first assignments was to deliver a presentation on the value of social media. I had to prove why something like Twitter was actually of any use in this industry, and explain how we would leverage it to promote our company.

At the time, it was a bit of a tall order. And my presentation was met with a lot of the questions and objections:

  • “My line of work is too boring.”
  • “I don’t have anything meaningful to contribute.”
  • “The people we want to reach aren’t on Twitter.”

Since then, businesses have certainly warmed up to the platform — and some of them have managed to establish a really impressive presence. But there are still a lot of small- to mid-size companies that continue to question the platform’s fit for their businesses.

Some continue to automatically push content to Twitter directly from Facebook — a big no-no in social media automation — while others start an account, only to abandon it a few weeks later.

For those folks, I’ve put together a list of 10 brands that are tweeting out thoughtful insights on some of the most unexpected topics, from bricks to car mats. Despite the unusual products and services they’ve been tasked with marketing, they are finding unique ways to use the platform … and you should take note. (And to learn more about how to succeed on Twitter, download our introductory guide to Twitter for business.)

10 Unexpected Companies to Follow for Twitter Inspiration

1) NYC Sanitation

They say that New York is the place to get the best of everything, and the city’s Department of Sanitation is no exception.

The word “sanitation” doesn’t exactly paint the prettiest mental picture, but the department uses creative images to take away some of the ickier connotations associated with it. For example, check out this graphic they put together to promote their food waste reduction initiative:

We’d consider this a strong post for a few reasons. For one, tweets with images tend to receive 150% more retweets than those without. Not to mention, the image communicates information in a way that doesn’t overwhelm the user with details — an important factor to consider when creating content for users who might be quickly skimming through their feeds.

NYC Sanitation is also careful not to come off as too authoritative on Twitter, which can be tricky for a local government office. It’s able to establish itself as a source of information, rather than a domineering force, and uses the platform for its own version of customer service.

Check out this exchange with a local resident seeking advice on how to store her compostable scraps before collection day:

What also strikes us about NYC Sanitation is its ability to illustrate its widespread presence in the community. The department uses Twitter to join existing conversations about something everyone is talking about — without coming off as patronizing or cliché. For example, take this screen capture of a Pokémon Go creature next to a collection bin:

It shows that there are simple ways for any brand — even one that’s known for trash pickup — to participate in a larger dialogue.

Takeaways for marketers:

  • Use images to share key information in a readable format (so people don’t skim past it).
  • Don’t be afraid to use Twitter for customer service — your followers expect it.
  • Think about how your business relates to something everyone is talking about, then join the conversation.

2) Pine Street Inn

I’ve always had tremendous respect for the number of marketing challenges faced by nonprofits, but with the right efforts, these issues can be overcome. Pine Street Inn, a Boston-based shelter and provider of services to the city’s homeless population, has commanded a Twitter presence with some great takeaways for NPO marketers.

To start, we can’t help but notice how infrequently Pine Street Inn tweets about donation requests. Instead, the organization chooses to indirectly encourage volunteerism or material contributions by giving serious props to corporations and individuals who help out:

It also uses Twitter as a place to share success stories of its past residents or clients. Updates like that show the impact of fundraising, so that followers know exactly how donation dollars are put to use:

By populating Twitter with this kind of diverse content, followers aren’t as likely to tune out tweets that do pertain to donations. That’s a principle applicable to for-profit businesses, too: When you avoid saturating Twitter with sales pitches, your audience is less likely to ignore them (or unfollow you).

Plus, remember the love Pine Street Inn tweets for its volunteers? According to Nonprofit Tech for Good, those folks make double the fiscal donations as non-volunteers.

Takeaways for marketers:

  • Don’t bombard followers with requests for donations, sign-ups, or sales.
  • Use images and stories to show how much you value your customers’ business and support, and how it’s making an impact.
  • Give props to your customers, followers, or volunteers — they’ll notice, and often reciprocate.

3) WeatherTech

WeatherTech, a maker of weather-proof car mats, is using Twitter to show how nifty (and definitely multi-purpose) automotive accessories can be.

For those of us who are more accident-prone than others — myself included — it might not always be so obvious how helpful a floormat can be after something as routine as grocery shopping. But using tweets like this one, WeatherTech is able to say, “Hey, you! Yeah, the one who spills things in the car. It happens. We’re here to help.”

WeatherTech also does a good job of working seasonality into its tweets. When something is deemed “seasonal or limited,” writes Mark Macdonald, people are inspired to get it while they can. For that reason, it’s generally a best practice to align your tweets with the time of year. WeatherTech follows that concept with photos to show how its custom-fit car mats come in handy during the summer, when road trips — as well as the sand and food that come with them — reign supreme:

Another tactic that WeatherTech isn’t afraid to use? Tweeting with cute animals. (Yes, we’re serious.) When a brand is able to connect a bland subject with something adorable, people typically pay attention. (Think: The Budweiser puppy or Heinz’s stampede of wiener dogs.) WeatherTech combines this idea with the seasonality of its tweets in posts like this one:

And this one:

Takeaways for marketers:

  • Show the different (counter-intuitive) ways your products can be used.
  • Keep tweets seasonal: how are your products are used during a specific time of year?
  • Use cute animals — even better if they’re interacting with your products.

4) Scotch

When was the last time you identified an office supply as “cellophane tape”? Over the years, Scotch Tape has become one of those brand names people use for generic terms — just like Chapstick or Kleenex. But despite the fact that it’s a household name, there are two factors to consider here:

  1. Tape isn’t typically a lengthy conversation topic.
  2. The brand makes more than just tape.

Scotch has used Twitter to address both items. For example, this tweet visually represents how Scotch products can be applied in many scenarios, like moving:

What makes this tweet effective is how it includes multiple pieces of information in a small, digestible format. With one post, Scotch has accomplished three-in-one communication: The practicality of its products, a link to its website, and a positive customer review.

Scotch also plays into people’s love for visual statistics by incorporating visual content — like this micro-infographic — into their publishing mix:

Here, Scotch is not only catering to the fact that readers tend to pay closer attention to information-carrying images than they do to plain text on a page, but this post also ties in a relatable element: Honestly, who doesn’t have Scotch Tape in their junk drawer? And tweets that are relatable have been shown to get more engagement.

Let’s do a deeper dive into some of these images, as well as how Scotch curates them to promote its brand. Take a closer look at the colors used in the previous and following image. Do they remind you of anything?

If you answered, “The Scotch logo,” you get an A+. Scotch has achieved consistency by incorporating the color palette associated with its brand into what it shares on social media. And since 80% of consumers say that color boosts their recognition of a brand, these images keep the brand recognizable, even when depicting something other than Scotch’s chief product offering.

Takeaways for marketers:

  • Again, use images to communicate information, like statistics. If you can include multiple pieces of information in one image without crowding it with text, even better.
  • Make your tweets relatable.
  • Maintain brand consistency in the images you tweet (e.g., by making the dominant colors the same as those in your logo).

5) TigerChef

It’s no secret that B2B marketers can borrow techniques from their B2C peers. TigerChef, a restaurant supplier, follows that advice by taking advantage of what it has in common with the general public: An obsession with food.

For example, food trucks have been an infatuation-du-jour for a few years now. TigerChef recognizes that growth and uses it to create blog content. Then, it uses Twitter to direct visitors there, like in this tweet:

Check out the language used above: It’s geared toward a target audience. TigerChef makes products primarily for chefs and restaurant owners, both seasoned and aspiring. With this tweet, the brand is able to attract two types of culinary professionals: Pros who have been buying these supplies for a while and want to explore the food truck market, and industry newcomers who are starting out there.

Here’s another key lesson from the B2C camp: Twitter can be used for customer service by B2B brands, too. When this French bakery received a defective product, TigerChef was able to respond more quickly via Twitter and send a free replacement, publicly ending its interaction with the customer on a positive note.

Takeaways for marketers:

  • If you’re B2B, don’t be afraid to borrow some Twitter best practices from B2C brands. Take something people are obsessed with — like food — and make it relevant to your brand and target audience.

6) Northcot Bricks

In the English language, there are a few human qualities ascribed to a pile of bricks. “Sexy” is not one of them. But at the same time, bricks surround most of us for the majority of the day. That’s something we tend to take for granted.

Northcot, a 90-year-old British brickmaker, uses Twitter to bring that to our attention. (See? You’re never too old to tweet.) The following tweet succeeds in highlighting the beautiful architecture that was achieved using a commonly overlooked product: bricks.

This serves as a good takeaway for businesses who aren’t sure where to begin with Twitter. If you don’t know what to say, think about the ways people interact with your product daily, and might not even realize it.

Northcot has also figured out how to share the social love. Here, the brand tweets its congratulations to an architecture firm:

How does that benefit Northcot? It draws attention to the fact that its bricks were used to create an award-winning design project.

Twitter can be a valuable relationship-building tool in that way, by nurturing and drawing attention to connections with brands that can potentially use and promote a business.

Retweeting other brands can achieve something similar. This retweet shows how other brands and people engage with Northcot. Plus, it shows that the brand isn’t afraid to have fun; it’s a reminder that brickmaking largely consists of playing with clay. And who doesn’t want to do that on a Wednesday afternoon?

Just be sure not to retweet every tweet that mentions your brand. At that point, it starts to look like you’re showing off.

Takeaways for marketers:

  • Even if you think your products are boring, think about how people come across them on a daily basis. Tweet out photos to remind your audience of that.
  • Shout out to other brands on Twitter, especially if they used your product to create something notable.
  • Retweet other brands, especially if it depicts them interacting with yours.

7) John Deere

Farming equipment never looked so cool. John Deere is one of those brands that has mastered Twitter in a way that makes people look at tractors differently.

For example, here’s a great example of how a branded hashtag can create long-term engagement, when done well. For over three years, users have been uploading images labeled with #DeereSighting (a branded play on words) to show how they interact with John Deere’s products:

Here’s what’s neat about branded hashtags. First, tweets with hashtags get twice the engagement as those without. Let’s say someone has followed John Deere for a while, but hasn’t thought to mention it on social media. Just by clicking #DeereSighting, that person sees how others show their love for John Deere in a fun way.

And remember that image lesson from Scotch — the one that says color boosts brand recognition for a vast majority of consumers? Notice that this picture doesn’t even contain a picture of an actual tractor. It’s a lovely, floral tribute to mothers, but it still carries the identifiable green and yellow colors associated with the iconic John Deere logo:

We also noticed that John Deere’s isn’t using Twitter to stray from the farm, so to speak. Rather, it’s paying tribute to what the business is known best for — tractors — and highlighting that legacy in unexpected ways.

In this tweet, the brand is acknowledging the important role that young engineers will play in the company’s future. Tweets like these send a message that says, “We’re adapting to change, but we’re still the reliable brand you’ve always known.”

Takeaways for marketers:

  • Create a branded hashtag that encourages your followers to start a conversation about your products.
  • If your business is a bit older, use Twitter to let followers know that you’re adaptable to change, but can still preserve your brand’s legacy.

8) Niagara Conservation

Remember that earlier statistic on hashtags, and how much they can boost engagement? Niagara Conservation, a maker of water-saving toilets, shows that those numbers don’t lie. I personally discovered the brand when someone I follow on Twitter used its very eye-catching hashtag: #WhatTheFlush.

Using the toilet is one of those things that we’re taught not to discuss openly, let alone announce on social media. But in an era where 40% of young adults say they use social media when nature calls, Niagara Conservation has leveraged Twitter in a way that gets people to broadcast their business, along with its environmental and financial implications.

Niagara Conservation achieves a really interesting balance with its tweets. The topics are usually crucial, like natural resource depletion. But the brand is able to effectively use humor to make these subjects more approachable, and even resonate with followers more than they might have otherwise. The drought is a serious problem. Water wastage is a serious problem. And this cat on a toilet isn’t messing around:

Another way Niagara Conservation creates a mass appeal is by addressing something everyone wants to do: Save money. (Just look how many articles come up for a search on “how to save money on Twitter.”) That’s another great use for Twitter: To highlight the benefits of your products — like how they can help your budget — in a condensed, digestible format.

Niagara is able to achieve that with the example below. It also avoids a doom-and-gloom approach to the primary intention of its product — to solve a global water shortage — and instead uses a cartoon to illustrate how this special toilet is financially beneficial.

And by the way, that dancing taco isn’t messing around, either.

Takeaways for marketers:

  • Highlight the benefits of your product that most people seek when researching brands, like how it will save them money.
  • Inject humor into certain topics to make them more approachable. (Note: Tread lightly, as to avoid coming off as insensitive or offensive.)

9) Roland Berger

Management consulting is one of those lines of work that, when talked about, can quickly cure insomnia. It’s also overrun with stereotypes (I’ll never forget this 1998 Dilbert cartoon that breaks down the word “consult” as a combination of “con” and “insult”).

But Roland Berger, a Munich-based management consulting firm, is using Twitter to reshape the perception of its industry. It uses the platform to answer some of the most common questions about management consulting, like “Why?” — namely, why talented people choose this line of work. And by accompanying their answers with rich colors and visuals — which are said to increase a person’s willingness to read a piece of content by 80% — the firm invites users to engage with them:

At risk of sounding like a broken record, it’s worth pointing out the color scheme. The use of blue in these images fits into the brand consistency we keep mentioning, complementing the brand’s logo and creating a sense of cohesiveness throughout its Twitter presence. But there’s a lot of psychology behind color, too. Roland Berger mostly uses blue, which is known to invoke brand trust.

There’s also a clear call-to-action in the tweet below: “Explore our new website.” Using actionable language in Tweets has been known to boost engagement, especially when used with a bold, attention-grabbing image. The word “download,” for example, is particularly effective: when used correctly, it’s shown an 11% increase in clicks.

Takeaways for marketers:

  • Create myth-busting content about your line of business, then tweet it out with rich colors and visuals.
  • Understand the psychology of color, and design your Twitter visuals accordingly.
  • Include a clear call-to-action in your tweets.

10) Poo~Pourri

Yes, another toilet-themed brand. I know.

From the beginning, Poo~Pourri has managed to un-taboo poo, especially for its target female audience. That makes its presence on this particular platform imperative, as 21% of online women use Twitter.

Since joining Twitter in 2009, Poo~Pourri has achieved a type of brand authenticity that is unapologetically honest and, for its 14,300+ followers, relatable. Just look at this exchange with one follower:

While, the customer above didn’t actually request a product replacement, and the incident described wasn’t the brand’s fault, that didn’t stop Poo~Pourri from going above and beyond to make that customer happy.

Most of Poo~Pourri’s responses to followers are tailored to their recipients in this way. And while many of them are inherently hilarious, they’re also really smart: People who have a personalized customer service experience on Twitter are 83% more likely to be satisfied.

Imagine if Poo~Pourri’s service was limited to phone or email? It’s highly unlikely that the customer would have shared this story through either of those methods, and the brand wouldn’t have been aware of it. So here’s a stellar example of a golden social media rule: An active and involved Twitter presence creates a huge opportunity for brands to delight customers.

Takeaways for marketers:

  • Know your audience, and don’t be afraid to start a conversation about something they might be too shy to bring up.
  • Even if it’s not your fault, use Twitter to improve a customer’s less-than-positive experience with your products.
  • Personalize your Twitter interactions with customers.

What are your favorite brands on Twitter? Share with us in the comments.

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