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The One Twitter Trick You Should be Using but Aren’t

John Patterson.
By: John Patterson  |   July 22, 2014  |   View Comments

So you clicked? Yes! The good news is that unlike 99% of articles that share a title like the one above, this one is actually going to be worth your precious click. I’m here to teach you a Twitter trick that almost no one knows. Here’s a hint, it has to do with something that was formerly only available via paid Twitter products and is now FREE. Not a typo -- $Free.99.

What is this magical free trick? Twitter cards: Specialized content cards that do everything from encourage app downloads, to collect email addresses. Probably one of the most underrated and most useful pieces of functionality on the platform. Now free in a tweet near you.

Here’s how you take advantage of this new tool.

Step 1: Visit Ads.Twitter.Com

Ads Management Interface

Welcome to your ads management interface. Usually this platform is used for purchasing and scheduling promoted Twitter products like tweets, accounts, and trends. The good news is, we aren't spending any money. So let’s get to the free stuff.

Step 2: Navigate to the “Creatives” tab

Creatives Tab

The Creatives tab is where you compose tweets when you’re creating a paid campaign. It's also where you will build cards to use in your organic/non-paid tweets. Bonus Tip: You can also schedule tweets from this page by composing a tweet not connected to a campaign, budget, and payment source. As you can see in the top left corner below “Creatives” I have one card already created. It’s for my personal blog Leather, Oak, and Smoke (check it out if you like babes and bourbon).

Step 3: Pick Your Card Type

Creatives

There are four card types that you’ll have access to through the ads manager. They are Lead Generation, Website, Basic App, and Image App. Each serves a different purpose as I’m sure you’ve guessed by their names.

Let’s take a look at the basic set up for each card.

Lead Gen Card

Lead Gen Card

For lead generation it is important to note that you must have a privacy policy published on the web that you can link to. This is required for this card. Lead generation cards will collect the name and email address of the twitter profile the user is logged in under when they click the “call to action” button.  As users submit their information, you can collect it as a downloadable CSV file. There is some opportunity to incorporate into CRM systems as well, but that requires additional work on the back end.

Website Card

Website Card

The website card set up will look very similar to the lead gen card except it will have a website URL and headline field instead of privacy policy and fallback URL. This is a clean and effective way to drive traffic to your website and requires no additional coding or back end work.

Basic App Card

Basic App Card

The Basic App download card is a little more technical. This card requires app id’s for Apple’s app store or Google Play. The card will also request a deep link for the app. This is to allow the install button to send users who have already downloaded and installed the app directly to the app. In the Basic App card you will only be able to publish the app icon for your app and the default call to action to install. This will instantly send the user to install your app.

Image App Card

Image App Card

The Image App Card has the same basic function as the Basic App Card, but also allows you to include an image from your app. It’s especially useful for apps that are highly visual and may be more detailed.

Now that you’ve built your card what do you do? Start tweeting! Your card creative will always be saved under the “Creatives” tab of your ads manager. From there, you can edit your current card or create new cards.

It’s important to note that in order to use your Twitter cards you must tweet through the compose function on ads.twitter.com

New Tweet

Notice that the Tweet user interface is different. You have deliver, promotion, and scheduling options. You also have the option to include a card in your tweet. Bonus Tip: Twitter cards use 23 characters be sure to plan your tweet copy accordingly.

Once you’ve selected your card within your tweet, it will appear as a link in the tweet dialogue box. Note that this link will not appear in the live tweet as only acts as a place holder within the tweet dialogue box.

Here is an example of a Website Card

Website Card Example

Now that I’ve armed you with a great Twitter trick get out there and use it! It can drive increase clicks and help grow your email list. Both of those things can lead to increased sales. Who doesn’t want that?!

If you have questions or want to know more tweet to me at @johnpatterson85. I’m always happy to tweet with cool people!


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