“Quoting” a tweet, or manual retweets as they’ve been called for some time, have finally been given true functionality within the Twitter web UI and iOS app (Android coming soon).
Twitter updated the “quote tweet” feature yesterday to include RTs as almost a “card”, contained within the user’s own response. Instead of trying (and, likely, failing) to verbalize this any further, here is what quoted tweets look like IRL:
While Twitter doesn’t give you the full 140 characters in your “quote”, the new feature certainly leaves more room (116 characters, to be exact) for comments than the legacy option ever did.
Twitter has been working diligently in 2015, to both improve the user experience and increase revenue — two main goals of the company, outlined by CEO Dick Costello late last year. Just in the last few months, Twitter has unveiled their own video product, livestreaming app Periscope, and revealed plans to begin rev-share opportunities with publishers and apps; all in the hopes of growing both their user-base, and finding a way to monetize content to the “non Twitter-user” crowd.
This latest update to the quote tweet feature comes on the heels of a firestorm of talk that Google (or another company) may be looking to launch a takeover bid of Twitter. The company added another $1 billion to their market cap on Tuesday (taking it to $34+ billion) with this chatter — which, as many of you may remember, recalls previous rumors over the years that Google would make a play for the social network.
With Google+ pretty much in the toilet, and given Twitter’s market valuation, Google would be one of the few companies with the bankroll to make an appealing offer. Neither company has commented on the rumors as of yet.
In the meantime, social media marketers will want to take note of the new quote tweet feature — particularly as it pertains to engagement rate. In some of the first tweets that I’ve seen quoted thus far, I haven’t seen the “quotes” counted towards the user’s total RTs OR mentions. I’m sure this is something that Twitter will correct in the coming days (if they haven’t already); but in the meantime, I’ll be interested in seeing how the ability to quote a tweet will affect user engagement for both sponsored and organic content.