Update (April 22, 2014): Twitter has completed the roll out for the new profile design. You can get the update here.
This week Twitter rolled out a new look for its profiles. In a blog post announcing the new design, Twitter showed off celeb-driven profiles like Weezer, Michelle Obama and Zac Efron. Now the Twitter makeover has begun for brands, with large global operations like McDonald’s and Warner Brothers now featuring the new look.
A quick scan through some of Canada’s most followed brands on Twitter, including Tim Hortons, Telus, BlackBerry and WestJet, shows the roll out has yet to begin north of the border (though some Canadian users have been switched). Before your brand gets the new profile, here’s a look at five ways you can make use of the new design.
Advertise a promotion
The new, much larger header provides ample space to communicate a message or offer a promotion. In this case, McDonald’s is advertising a week-long offer on a specific item – coffee. Though Twitter users tend to browse their own timeline rather than other users’ profiles, having more information on the profile – and a more visually commanding look – may change that behaviour, opening up new opportunities for brands to market on their profile page.
Showcase product shots
Ford’s header looks exactly like a still from one of its TV commercials. This works well for the automaker, especially given the Ford-blue colour of the car, but any brand could similarly feature one of its products on the header. Also note Ford’s “pinned” tweet, another new profile feature. The brand pinned a tweet about its 50th anniversary, making use of the space for another of its brand promotions.
Create branded concept art
The Australian Football League took a concept art approach, taking a shot of a stadium and doctoring it up with shadowed edges for effect and sticking on a brand-adjacent inspirational message: Everything’s Possible. This could easily read cheesy, but for the AFL it works.
Feature the face of your brand
When you shell out for a name like David Beckham, you want to put the face of your brand on every piece of real estate you have. Again, the blown up header provides ample space to show off whichever famous star is currently shilling for you brand. Also note the photo tab is open, creating a Pinterest-like board of images Adidas has shared – another new, more visually pleasing way content is curated on the new profile.
Warner Brothers is using its header to promote one of its biggest upcoming features, Transcendence. This format is sure to be followed by other studios, networks and media companies, from MTV and Vevo to CBS and HBO. The strategy could also work for brands investing in content marketing, if there is a video series or big event the brand is sponsoring.