What Does Twitter's 280 Character Limit Mean for Social Media Marketing?

When Twitter unexpectedly announced it would be testing an increased character limit of 280 characters on the platform, mixed feelings were felt by its users and marketers alike. Some saw the increase a positive change, a way of sharing more information, without having to send multiple tweets. Others saw it as losing what gives Twitter its unique charm; short, concise updates from people you follow be them friends, businesses or people of interest.

At the end of September we ran a poll on Twitter after the initial announcement and 42% of the people that voted, said the character count should be kept at 140 characters.

Following that this morning we launched a fresh poll now that the 280 character limit had been rolled out to almost all users and the resounding feeling is that many people do not want the change at all with 71% of the votes accounted to No. I hate it!


So How Can Marketers & Businesses Benefit?

For 11 years, the selling point of Twitter has been its 140 character limit, meaning that marketers had to be consistently creative to fit the message they were sharing into that limit, whilst also ensuring that the message was delivered clearly and concisely to its target audience. It was the platform that you understood as simple, and loved it when your friends said: “I don’t get it”. Now Twitter risks losing its charm.

How you can benefit from this change comes in with the good news:

  • – You now have an extended character limit.
  • – You can share more of your brand message in a single tweet. 

That’s it. They are the only pros of this change for businesses and marketers. However, the bad news is exactly the same:

  • – You now have an extended character limit.
  • – You can share more of your brand message in a single tweet. 

Let me explain; an increased character limit can be a good thing if you use it correctly. What you absolutely must avoid is filling out those characters with “waffle”, pointless text that doesn’t add value to the content is not going to help your brand, or help get your message across. It’s going to bore users and ultimately they’ll choose not to read it, or at worst unfollow you and contribute to shrinking your current audience.

If your original tweet is 100 characters and it portrays your message well, then the extra characters on that basis need to be ignored. You don’t need to add additional content to a post which is perfect in its existing form.

I Don’t Like Change.

We do, actually at Climb Online we LOVE change and you should too. We embrace it and we’ll, of course, be working with our clients to understand how they as a business can benefit from the change, whilst keeping in mind that “waffle” must at all costs be avoided.

Do you need some help with your Social Media Marketing? Our team of social wizards at Climb Online have been helping clients extend their social reach and grow their brands across social channels, and we’re ready to help your business also. Get in touch with us today and one of our friendly Digital Marketing Consultants will work with you on a strategy to maximise your exposure on social media.

Remember, It’s Noisy. Be Heard.

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