The results of a recently released eye tracking study will help companies make best use of the new brand Twitter page features—convincing visitors to become followers.
Twitter’s enhanced profile pages took off in early December for only 21 select advertisers such as Coca-cola, Bing and McDonald’s. Most were brands already using Twitter to display commercial content, but the new brand page provides a large header banner, and the ability to pin a select tweet to the top of the feed, which auto-expands to display embedded media.
The study on these new brand pages, observed eye movements and online actions to see which aspects the users focused on, were distracted by, and connected to.
The study found that companies should avoid product advertisement in headers, such as how McDonald’s advertised a Big Mac on its header, because it emits a corporate, promotional feel, so users will skim by it. The use of the header to show a promotion link on @Staples page, enticed users, but links aren’t clickable in headers so that frustrated them—instead the headers should direct them to tweeted promotion links.
It also showed that tweets with an image or those that use the new auto-expanded video box feature keeps the users focus and gives them a feel for the company. HP visitors connected with a tweet image of a dog looking at them and felt it showed a more humorous side of HP.
Another highlight of the study was that reading a range of tweets can help the user see how the company interacts with customers through replys, retweets, or responding to complaints. When HP did this, users said they liked how they felt HP was being honest and genuine with followers.
After this study, brands hope Twitter will use the feedback to provide continued improvements, even though already they have seen growth. Since launching the new page, Bing’s Twitter base expanded by nearly 50 percent in the last six months, as well as a 28 percent increase in retweets last month.