5 New Twitter Features to Enhance Your Experience

social media toolsHave you kept up with the new Twitter changes?

In an effort to dramatically increase overall user engagement, Twitter launched a number of very interesting new features.

And on top of everything, Twitter also has a brand-new logo.

After playing with the new Twitter features for a while, I have quickly grown very fond of them. Take a look yourself and see how Twitter can make your daily information intake easier.

#1: Find Out the Week’s Top Twitter Stories

After Twitter acquired popular email digest service Summify a few months back, they made a strong point that email is not dead.

Recently Twitter announced a brand-new feature. It’s a weekly email digest filled with great stories from your stream.

Or to put it in the words of Twitter’s VP Othman Lakari, you will get “the most relevant tweets and stories shared by the people you’re connected to on Twitter.”

When the first Twitter email hit my inbox I was very excited. What you’ll notice immediately is a list of the top five stories from your stream this week.

5 best links

The five best links will land in your inbox.

I was pleasantly surprised with the content of the first email. The top story was about “Facebook.com.”

It seems there are still a few things with the stories algorithm that Twitter needs to resolve. But it’s also great to be able to click through from each avatar to the actual tweet.

click through to avatar

Click through any avatar and see the original tweet about that story.

If you can’t spend time during the week on Twitter and still want to get the gist of what was going on that week, these stories are gold. I’m definitely looking forward to using these email digests.

#2: Discover the Top Tweets of the Week

What Twitter has now introduced, on top of the original Summify format, is a list of the top tweets that don’t contain links. And frankly, this was a very pleasant surprise too.

Although the value of these tweets from a business viewpoint is rather low, they are very entertaining. These tweets tend to be funny status updates or pictures that were retweeted hundreds or thousands of times.

funny and most tweeted

The funniest and most retweeted tweets now in your inbox.

It seems that this feature is intended to pique your interest and encourage you to spend some time on Twitter’s site instead of providing you information. It’s a great combination to have these top tweets and the informative stories by email digest.

And if you want to turn off these emails altogether, you can always go to your Twitter settings and switch them off.

easily turn off email digest

Turn off the new email digest very easily in Settings.

#3: Get Tailored Trends From Twitter

Another very powerful feature Twitter launched recently is called Tailored Trends. So in case you never got any value out of #JustinBieber or #LadyGaga trending, Twitter’s trend feature is now much more closely related to what you care about.

What are Tailored Trends all about? According to Twitter, “Trends offer a unique way to get closer to what you care about. Trends are tailored for you based on your location and whom you follow.”

tailored trends

Twitter asks you kindly if you want to swap to their new Tailored Trends.

The idea behind Tailored Trends is fantastic. The results are a vast improvement and have already helped me to stay on top of news from my industry. Check out the list of new Tailored Trends I received.

customize trends

Customize trends for you by country or following here.

You can easily click on “change” anytime to customize them further.

#4: Get Follow Suggestions in Your Inbox

The last feature in the list for new emails from Twitter is one to send you suggestions on whom to follow. Twitter picks out a few accounts that you might enjoy following based on whom you already follow.

follow suggestions

Check your inbox for follow suggestions from Twitter.

The suggestions from Twitter are still very general and don’t quite go into too much depth connecting them to my interests. I’m sure this is something they’re working on though.

You can use the Follow Suggest feature found on the left-hand side of Twitter. This was improved a few months ago and works very well.

existing follow suggestions

The existing follow suggestions are still very useful.

Personally, I believe this suggestion box is very useful—especially if you’re trying to expand your network by following new accounts that are highly relevant to your business. Try it out and spend a few minutes following people from the suggestion box.

#5: Expand Tweets in Your Stream

The last new feature that Twitter has introduced is expanded tweets. In Twitter’s official announcement, this feature is described as follows:

When you expand tweets containing links to partner websites, you can now see content previews, view images, play videos and more.

Now this is nothing new, as this feature already existed with images, YouTube videos or Instagram pictures. But if you’re a blogger or author, this could become very interesting for you soon. Twitter plans to open this up, so any website can display previews to articles very soon.

Expanded tweets work both for your mobile phone and for the web.

preview story on phone

See a preview of the story easily on your phone.

Twitter has only launched this feature to work with a handful of websites, including Time, the New York Times, the San Francisco Chronicle, BuzzFeed and a few others. On the web, this is what you get:

picture previews twitter

Get picture previews right on Twitter.com for specific publishers.

This is definitely another effort to keep users coming back to Twitter.com and keep them engaged longer on the site.

Personally, I am very excited about how Twitter continues to hammer out new features, even though it’s a very established company.

The new email digest feature can be extremely handy if you suffer from information overload like I do. I’m also keeping an eye out for when I can add my own blog post previews inside expanded tweets.

Over to You Now

What do you think of Twitter’s new efforts to make the site more compelling? Which of its new features will be most useful for you? Leave your questions and comments in the box below.

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About the Author, Leon Widrich

Leo Widrich is the co-founder of BufferApp.com, a smarter way to publish your tweets and other social media posts. He writes more social media tips on the Buffer blog. Be sure to connect with him @leowid anytime. Other posts by »




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