Twitter is a cool platform, but it's got some problems. It's just so cluttered, you know? There's so much content, and it's so text-based, it's pretty hard to get people excited about scrolling through that hectic Twitter timeline.
But Twitter gets it. And I think that's why we've been seeing so much experimentation on their end over the past several months. For instance, not too long ago we started seeing multimedia content embedded in tweets. Cool ... not a bad step toward incorporating more visual content into all that text. And we also saw the advent of lead generation Twitter Cards -- that's right, they're helping businesses generate leads more easily via the Twitter timeline, too. And now, according to TechCrunch, they're starting to experiment with a new embedded tweet feature that'll help make content sharing more beneficial for brands (if the feature is ever rolled out full scale).
Twitter's New Feature for Embedded Tweets
Again, this is just a test right now, so you won't see this feature rolled out to your brand's Twitter account, although you may see it appearing with some tweets in your timeline. It appears Twitter is testing a feature wherein a tweet that has been embedded elsewhere will list the websites the tweet has been embedded on. Here's an example:
Has Twitter always shown where particular tweets are embedded on? pic.twitter.com/Th5y94omPZ— Mikko Hypponen ✘ (@mikko) July 1, 2013
See the bottom there? Where it says "Embedded on these websites"? Those are the sites that have embedded this particular tweet -- so theoretically, HubSpot should show up in that tweet now, too. (By the way, I checked, and so far it doesn't ... I'll update you if it does, though.)
So if this feature rolls out to all, if you embed a tweet on your website, then your website should show up at the bottom of that tweet when it's viewed on Twitter.
Why is this new feature cool? Because it would make it more beneficial for sites to share content from someone else -- and to share it from a tweet, specifically, instead of say ... an inbound link to a blog post. This is getting people to use Twitter to find content to link to, since they themselves could get greater visibility by embedding tweets. This doesn't hurt Twitter, either, as it incentivizes people to use the embedded tweets feature instead of simply taking a screenshot of a tweet. Feature adoption is a very good thing for the little blue bird.
Twitter does say, however, that it's testing a ton of new features like this. So this one may get the axe, while others we haven't even seen might pop up. In itsr blog post, "Innovate through experimentation," which was actually published over a year ago to address these types of feature pop-ups, Twitter writes, "We frequently test hundreds of variations of new features and designs with small groups of users ... These experiments help us understand what experiences people like best or use most often. When an experiment ends, we study the results and roll out the most successful variation to everyone as soon as we can." Sound familiar? If you're an agile marketer, I think you'll recognize Twitter's approach.
What do you think? Are these tests helping Twitter add more value for users and brands? Are they helping to improve the content consumption experience?
Image credit: marek.sotak