Twitter makes it easier to contact consumers directly

Twitter has been forefront of social media news in recent weeks with the announcement of two major updates. These changes affect all users, so whether you’re a consumer,...

Twitter has been forefront of social media news following the announcement of two major updates. These changes affect all users, so whether you’re a consumer, B2B or B2C business, non-profit organisation or a celebrity, you can brush up on your Twitter knowledge with our recap below;


Direct Messages

The biggest and possibly most controversial announcement is regarding the social media giant’s Direct Messaging feature. In a recent blog post Twitter announced “we’re changing how direct messaging works so that it’s even easier for you to communicate one-to-one or with a chosen group of people, anywhere in the world.”  Previously, each user would have had to be following the other to engage in conversation via Direct Message.

Twitter describes this update as making it “easier than ever to have private conversations” and it’s likely to be welcomed by marketers, who will now be able to Direct Message users without having to establish a connection beforehand. Likewise, for brands offering customer service on Twitter this should make it easier to move conversations into a private setting – which is particurly important for brands handling sensitive data. But some users are concerned that this offers an opportunity for complete strangers (or spammers) to contact them privately.

Changes to the DM feature include:

  • An opt-in feature that allows users to receive Direct Messages from anyone, even if they don’t follow them.
  • A new Direct Message button on profile pages on both Android and iPhone. This will be visible on the profiles of people you can send Direct Messages to.

Twitter started rolling out these changes to all users across the world on April 20th and says it hopes “these changes help you connect more easily – and directly – on Twitter with the people, causes and businesses you care about most”.

To opt in for these latest changes follow these instructions. Users who receive Direct Messages from other users they don’t want to privately interact with can still take action here.

#Discover and trends

Twitter also announced on its blog this month, that it is to retire its #Discover and Activity features for all iOS and Android users in a bid to make the trends experience on mobile “more informative and easier to find”.

Twitter has also taken note of the fact that not all trends are self explanatory at first glance, especially if they are abbreviated and can require further investigation by users. The new trends experience will include a description of each trend and possibly also “how many Tweets have been sent and whether a topic is trending up or down”.

Unfortunately for marketers in the UK, this update is currently only available to users in the US who have tailored trends on iOS and Android. But not to fear, Twitter say they are experimenting with these features and look forward to expanding the availability of the updates to both mobile and web in the future.

As we eagerly await the new trends experience on Twitter, we’d love to hear what you think of the new Direct Message changes. Let us what you think of the new update in the comments below.

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