One of the major faults of Twitter is its 140 character per tweet limit. Despite it, creative small business marketers have been able to use the social media platform for years, successfully.
The latest feature Twitter has launched is its Twitter Cards, which have opened a whole new window of opportunities. I will go through the process of what Twitter Cards are and how you can use them.
The first question you may be asking yourself is “What are Twitter Cards?” Well, Twitter Cards are basically tweets on steroids. Along with your 140-character-message, you are able to attach videos, audio, download links, and images. These Twitter Cards are more appealing to users than your boring old text tweets. There are four types of Twitter Cards that are currently available.
Summary Card: The summary card is made to give your audience a preview of your content before clicking on it. The content above the card is your original tweet and in the card is a small preview of what the blog, that you linked, is.
Summary Card With Large Image: Just like before, your original tweet is shown above the card, but what gives this that special oomph is its large image. With great images comes more potential customers.
Player Card: This card is particularly cool because it allows you to upload a video and audio from within a tweet. It’s very handy and very engaging!
App Card: This last card is known as the app card, obviously aimed more towards mobile app vendors. You attach your app to your tweet and it allows users to download your app right from Twitter!
Another question you may be asking is “How do I use Twitter Cards?”
When it comes to using Twitter Cards, there are two challenges to overcome. First, they aren’t too easy to set up. Don’t let this fool you! Once you figure out how to use it and have everything in place, it will be super easy for you. Getting everything in place is just the tricky part.
Twitter provides useful documentation that can help get you started using their Cards, a simple overview for you to follow. If that isn’t helpful, then the best way to use Twitter Cards is via plugins and extensions. An example, if your website was built in WordPress, you can use the Jetpack or JM Twitter Cards plugins to start off your Twitter Cards. If this just sounds all too confusing for you, Twitter provides how-to docs, to help get you up and running using plugins and extensions.
The other challenge is, if you do not pin the tweet to the top of your Twitter newsfeed, then the card won’t be shown automatically. You want your audience to click “View Summary” on the right side of your tweet, to get the full effect. You can also guide them to click it by tweeting clever things, such as “Click the View Summary link to see what prizes we have in our giveaway!
Twitter Card Approval: Through all of those obstacles, you have one more until you are done, which is validation. According to the steps provided for you at the bottom of the page, you need to, “Run your URL against the validator tool to test. If you are working with a Player Card, request approval for whitelisting. All other Cards do not need whitelisting.”
The only way validation will be hard for you, is if you made a misstep while setting up your Twitter Card. Since Player Cards have more rules, validating them can be a bit more challenging.
If you think you can handle all of that, then you’ll be surprised at what value Twitter Cards can add to your social media efforts. Like I mentioned before, Twitter Cards can be appealing and engaging and that’s what helps boost your traffic to lead them to your marketing offers and messages.
Content originally published here
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