You’ve probably heard by now that Twitter status updates no longer count photos, videos, GIFs, polls and quote tweets toward the 140 character limit. While the social media maven may have relaxed its limit to allow for more expressive posts, brands may be surprised to learn that these new rules don’t apply to promoted tweets. There is a workaround (posting socially and then promoting the tweet afterwards), but marketers can’t help but notice a double-standard for brands vs. creators.
At the DMEXCO conference in Cologne, Germany on Thursday, Twitter CEO and co-founder Jack Dorsey emphasized a need to re-think the micro-blogging outlet, admitting that the company has been losing money. Although details of strategy remained vague, Dorsey made a point to mention the inclusion of advertisers. “We’ve been working with our partners and with our advertising partners to continue to figure out how to speak in this new world and to speak in a way that’s relevant to the audience,” he said.
It comes as a surprise, then, that advertisers were not included in the relaxed character limit implementation. Of course, Twitter will no doubt change and experiment with these rules, so marketers may be included in the near future. Twitter and other sites like YouTube Community, however, are sending a subtle message to brands—audiences come first and influencers transcend ever-changing rules.
Influencers have access to exclusive communities and features that brands do not, and Twitter’s new rule is just one example. The fact remains that an influencer will create more buzz around a product or service just by speaking with his/her online audience. That audience is expected to grow, too. eMarketer estimates that worldwide, user growth of 10.9 percent this year will bring Twitter’s monthly active population to 286.3 million by the end of 2016. If you can’t beat ’em…partner with ’em.