Whilst the web is all of a twitter over the new Twitter Page design, features and functionality (and yes it does look like Facebook), if you step back from the details you see where Twitter is headed. The new design suggests that Twitter is positioning itself as your shiny new content marketing hub – a publishing platform for your brand or business.
Before last week Twitter was all about subscribing to streams from the ‘firehose’ of Twitter content from within an app – when was the last time your actually visited an actual Twitter page?
But the new design suggests that Twitter actually wants people to visit Twitter pages, and for us to see Twitter pages as a new generation tumblr or blog to check out the latest from a brand, businesses and personality.
And for brands, businesses and personalities Twitter for the first time is offering an attractive, customisable, responsive and professionally designed template that is no longer the source of embarrassment. Your new-look Twitter page looks smart – and provides extra functionality not available in the ‘firehose’ of content to attract browsers – filtering based on content, a focus on images, video and content cards, and presentation of content based on popularity. And of course there is the huge brand-able header image to present your brand visually. It far easier, faster and resource-efficient to maintain a Twitter page than a blog, news site, or Tumblr – and why bother going to a Perry, Bieber or Gaga site, when all the latest news and content is on their Twitter page? Likewise for Nike, FC Barcelona or Adidas.
Of course this Twitter play to become a content marketing hub may just be one more iteration in Twitter’s search for a compelling reason to exist (and to sell ad space) – but Twitter as a content marketing hub it makes a whole lot more sense than Twitter as a customer service channel or a throwback to turn-of-the-century ‘engagement marketing’ – ‘markets are conversations’ and all that jazz.