Since the beginning, Twitter’s most distinct feature has been its 140 Character limit. Over the years, we’ve all developed creative shortcuts to make the most out of those 140 characters. We’re really glad that Twitter has finally made some updates on what counts in those precious 140 characters, giving users more freedom to compose longer tweets.
Here is everything you need to know about Twitter’s new 140 characters update:
- Replies: When replying to a tweet, @names will no longer count toward 140-characters. This will make having conversations on Twitter easier, more personal and straight to the point.
- Goodbye, .@ (period before @): New tweets that begin with a username will automatically reach all of your followers. Previously, if you start a tweet with a username and you want to make it visible to all of your followers, you would need to add a period before @. If you want a reply to be seen by all of your followers, you will be able to Retweet it to signal that you intend for it to be viewed more broadly.
- Media Attachments don’t count: The URL at the end of tweets generated from attaching video, poll, quoted tweet, or DM link will not count towards the character limit. However, URLs typed or pasted inside the tweet will still be counted towards the character limits.
- Retweet and Quote Tweet Yourself: Easily Retweet your own tweets, or Quote Tweet yourself when you want to share a new reflection or increase the visibility of a really awesome tweet.
- Twitter becomes more like a chat app (i.e. iMessage): According to Twitter, direct messages are now more dynamic with read receipts, typing indicators and web preview links. Now, you can see when someone has read your message, because a blue check mark will appear next to a message’s timestamp once it’s been read. Previously, the check mark was only visible on Twitter’s native mobile app. But now, it’s also visible when messages are viewed on Twitter.com. Alongside read receipts, Twitter has added a typing indicator. Lastly, there is now an expanded previews window for links in DMs, similar to the preview window that appears on Facebook.
What do these changes look like?
The diagram displays the high-level changes and the elements that will be hidden in the user interface.
When on Twitter, whether on the app or on the web, the hidden @mentions will appear outside of the visible Tweet body, in a format similar to below. When you reply to multiple people, the name of the person whom the user is directly replying to should be prioritized.
The displayed Twitter previews when posted media links in DMs or tweets.
How do I take advantage of these updates?
- More Context: A massive benefit of the Twitter update is that user @names won’t be counted towards your 140 characters This means having more room to say what you want, even after replying to another user. You now have more space to add additional details, text, images or videos.
- For example, replying back to a potential customer in 140 characters but also adding a demo video on how to use your product.
- The more visuals, the better: Using visuals is a great way to catch the attention of your prospects on Twitter. It helps you stand out and like they say, a picture really is worth a thousand words. Studies also have shown that visual and media attachments on tweets are a big father in boosting retweets and engagements. Based on Twitter’s study, photos average a 35% boost in Retweets, while videos get a 28% boost.
- For example, post screenshots, videos and photos of your product when providing customer support.
- No more confused period before the @: The new change ends the long relationship where tweets were only seen to users who followed both the person tweeting and the person named. Leading to many users beginning their conversation with a “.” before the @name.
This update alleviates the confusion many had around this odd, hidden syntax rule.
- Share longer tweets by quoting yourself: In the past, you may have had to break up your tweets to articulate all of your thoughts. However, now with Twitter’s quote option, you can tie two related tweets together in a longer tweet. Simply share your first tweet, then quote that tweet and add the rest of your message in the 140 characters available in the second tweet. Put the math together and you’ll now have 280 characters to get creative!
- Opportunity for more personal interactions on social: One of the reasons why we love Twitter is because the platform allows us to have one-on-one conversations in real-time with thousands of people around the world. This new update opens up even more opportunities for one-on-one conversations, with usernames not counting against 140 characters, giving us full advantage to express ourselves.
How does this update impact Socedo?
Socedo has a lead discovery and engagement system that indexes and stores millions of tweets each day to help you discover your target prospects automatically. The more characters’ prospects tweet, the more bio keywords, conversational keywords and hashtags we can capture in our system. By increasing the number of relevant keywords we process, our system will help you find more viable prospects who fit your target criteria.
Now that users can see the link you’re attaching in your DM through a Preview Window, you no longer need to tell a user to “click on this link” in your message. And if prospects have their read receipts turned on, you’ll know if they read your DM and have the option to reach out again later if you like.
Now it’s your turn!
Now is the time for you to revisit how you post content on Twitter. Were you previously struggling to fit everything you want into a tweet? Now, you can use a few more keywords, add interesting links and beautiful visuals to your set of posts. So what are you waiting for? Tweet away!