Among the huge news that Twitter CEO Dick Costolo is stepping down, Twitter also made another announcement: that, coming July, there will no longer be any character restrictions on Direct Messages. Although not as interesting for the general business press, this is actually pretty momentous for brands who use Twitter to solve customer service issues.
Twitter's 140 character limit is often heralded as fundamental to their success. It makes a huge amount of sense to constrain how much people can write in public messages, keeping Tweets snappy and your Twitter feed readable.
But this argument doesn't hold when it comes to private messages sent over the platform. For companies, a huge percentage of these are in the context of helping solve a customer service issue. Forcing consumers and customer service issues to split what they're trying to say into multiple 140 character messages is not only frustrating, but it can also lead to missed information (e.g. a consumer may respond to the first message the agent sends, not realizing that more are coming).
By allowing consumers and brands to send longer messages, it will become significantly easier to solve complex issues over Twitter. There's no longer an excuse to request a consumer moves channel to email (even more frustrating for consumers than splitting up a long message). Many of our major clients have made the decision to allow the passing of secure information over Twitter DMs (helped by our enterprise-grade security and encryption).
With these changes (alongside the recent announcements about Facebook Messenger), and the continuing innovation that social platforms continue to put into their service offerings, there is truly no longer any reason to switch back to archaic channels like email and chat. The future is mobile and social.