280 Characters – How will brands make the most of it?

If you logged into Twitter and your home page was full of small essays, an abundance of reaction gifs and the entire first verse of the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air theme song in one tweet, it’s because Twitter has officially doubled its character limit.

280 characters

When Twitter launched a trial allowing a select few to express themselves in more than 140 characters, everyone from the Cookie Monster to Chrissy Teigen had something to say about it.

The micro-blogging site doubled the character limit for its 330 million monthly active users after “listening and observing a problem our global community was having”.

Not all languages will have access to the expanded character limit; people who speak Japanese, Korean and Chinese will continue to use 140 characters.

Aliza Rosen, Product Manager at Twitter wrote, “these languages have always been able to say more with their Tweets because of the density of their writing systems”.

What does this mean for brands?

Twitter CEO, Jack Dorsey, made a series of tweets when the trial began in September, mentioning that the platform would maintain its “brevity, speed, and essence” despite increasing the character limit.

While brands already have the ability to communicate with consumers via direct messages without character restrictions, brands will be able to improve the customer experience by providing a warmer and transparent service that will be accessible to all users.

During the trial, Twitter found that people who tweeted using more than 140 characters received higher engagement (likes, retweets, mentions) and gained more followers. Following the update, Twitter expects to see people spending more time on the platform and using its functions to their full potential.

With more space to speak your mind, users may be tempted to share the same messages across multiple social channels. With each platform having a unique purpose, trending topics, events or competitions might only be relevant to one account or a specific audience. Brands shouldn’t forget that content needs to be optimised for each platform.

Several brands have made the most of every last character since Twitter made the announcement and while there are still some users on the fence, brands will need to tweak their social strategy and learn to use the character expansion to their advantage.

How do you think 280 characters will affect social media marketing strategies? Share your thoughts with us on Twitter.

 

 

Written by Sonia Rowe – Social Media Executive

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