Twitter is in the process of rolling out yet another complete redesign, and this one is not only Twitter is rolling out a redesign that not only simplifies the user experience but also presents important new ways for brands to reach their customers and for customers to give feedback to brands.
The simplification turns on five simple tabs – Home, Connect, Discover, Me, and Tweet – that each provides a different way for customers to tell companies what they think of a company, its services or products, and its social responsibility. The Home tab features are familiar in that they allow customers to tweet, follow trends, see recommended people, and send direct messages, but the @Connect tab is broken out into Interactions and Mentions. Interactions lets customers watch conversations and retweets, so that if you’re talking about a brand, you’ll be able to connect with others who are doing the same, and then also see who is retweeting those conversations. The Mentions tab highlights mentions of your name in the context of these conversations and the #Discover tab takes it one step further, allowing you to see related stories and trends based on their recent popularity as well as your connections, location, and language. So if you happen to be discussing a brand, either in a positive or negative sense, conversations in and around that topic will readily appear. You can also search for them by using hashtags.
The reach of such conversations is further expanded as tweets are now embeddable, which means that you can take a tweet and embed it as fully functional content on another platform that others can then reply to, retweet, favorite, or follow. Additionally, the new hashtag button tells visitors if a relevant conversation is going on, allowing you to follow that conversation or join in with a simple click. On the brand’s side of the conversation, Twitter has redesigned its platform to ensure that brands don’t lose touch with their customers because they are directed to leave Twitter itself. Instead, Twitter has introduced Brand Pages that allow companies to promote their products and services within Twitter itself. Obviously this gives brands more cause to advertise on Twitter and customers more reason to stay there. These brand pages can be customized by the company in question so they are consistent the brand’s identity, while also giving them some flexibility to shape the visitor’s experience. Included here are three examples that showcase this new flexibility: @CocaCola and @Intel.
The net effect of this most recent Twitter redesign is that it will further enhance brand/customer conversations by making the brand experience more customized and customer feedback more social. Such sophistication is good for brands but it also brings with it heightened responsibility as customers look to the brands they support through their purchases to be more authentic, transparent and socially responsible if they want to be the success stories of 2012.
Do you like the Twitter redesign? How do you think it will change the way brands engage to their customers?