One day, a little lightning bolt appeared on the bottom of Twitter’s navigation bar.
You probably didn’t notice it until you accidentally tapped it and uncovered its purpose while trying to view your recent notifications.
This little bolt signifies Twitter’s “Moments” feature—an attempt made by the social platform to highlight a singularly focused and coherent story amid the noise that can often clog a user’s feed.
The Moments feature works like this: During a key cultural or social event, Twitter pulls and curates snippets of conversation from across the Twittersphere, essentially highlighting this—you guessed it—moment in an isolated tab. It’s Christmas? Click the Moments tab to see what Twitter is saying about the holiday. It’s Superbowl Sunday? Here are the commercials people are making fun of.
The concept is a familiar one—Instagram and Snapchat also have these featured, crowd-sourced conversation hubs as part of their interface. But Twitter’s version has failed to make much of a splash due to a broad and largely flavorless execution. The topics chosen were selected to resonate with everyone, and as a result it was interesting to no one.
But changes at Twitter HQ might mean a second chance for this often-overlooked feature.
Making Your (Twitter) Moment
Over the past month, Twitter has expanded the feature, allowing select influencers, partners, and brands to create their own Moments. Because these Moments are curated to fit a particular point of view, they are sharper and more impactful. And they’re more interesting, too.
This immediately makes Moments feel more relevant and valuable for users and content creators alike. More exciting yet, Twitter is expanding access to this feature for all users.
It remains to be seen if users will engage more with Twitter Moments as a result of this shift, but in the meantime brands are scrambling to figure out how to best leverage the latest tool in the social media marketers toolbox. There are two immediate potential upsides that Twitter Moments might offer brands.
Twitter’s busy real-time feed structure means content can get lost or separated from its context. If your audience isn’t active at the exact moment you’re posting, they might miss out on seeing your message in the way you’ve intended. Twitter Moments gives content a second life.
Brands might use this feature to easily package posts from a single campaign, influencer takeover, or a new product announcement, spruced up with an eye-catching cover photo and clever description.
UGC Highlight Reel
Moments doesn’t necessarily have to be about your own content—it also offers a new way to collect and curate content produced by other sources. This is a big step up from previous methods like retweeting (which needs to be done sparingly to avoid overwhelming your followers). Instead of retweeting five pictures and three quotes about a subject, try compiling them into a single Moment. This gives your followers more control over whether they wish to see these posts and presents the content in a media-focused, full-screen format.
Where It Goes from Here
It may be too early to understand Moments’ full scope of opportunities, but it will be interesting to see which brands explore the new feature—and how. Twitter is currently retooling its interface, apparently unsure of exactly where or how to position it within the channel’s overall experience, but as it continues to lean into moments rather than shy away from them, it seems clear that they see this as a concept with legs.
Can you think of any other dynamic ways to leverage Twitter moments? Let us know!