Hitmetrix - User behavior analytics & recording

Twitter will now let you direct message anyone you follow

Yesterday, according to The Verge, Twitter quietly introduced an update to its direct message feature, which will allow you to receive direct messages from anyone who follows you. 

Previously, you could only direct message someone if they followed you. This update now makes it a two way street. Before everyone panics about the floods of spam that will surely be the result of this change, you should know it’s an opt-in feature.  You can check a box in your settings that will allow you to receive direct messages from your followers.

There’s a few ways this is beneficial to Twitter, and the companies that use it for their marketing. For one, it’s definitely another tool for brands looking to engage their Twitter followers,. For customer service complaints, customers can now directly message the company, saving it the embarrassment of dealing with the complaint out in the open (although I’m sure customers would still prefer to publicly complain.) At least this way they can move the conversation private faster.

Conceivably, brands could also start sending personalized messages for certain demographics of users who choose to receive direct messages from followers. Sounds spammy, but we shouldn’t underestimate how many people actually want to hear directly from brands they love.

For Twitter itself, this could be a feature that increases engagement. Although a lot of influential Twitter users with tons of followers could choose to stay clear of getting follower messages, some of them, even celebrities might be open to the idea. If that happens, it could create a lot of excitement among regular users, increasing time spent on the site. And in Twitter’s charge towards its IPO, that’s an attractive prospect to sell.



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