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Twitter enables always-visible images: The effect on Social Customer Service

Anthony Thomas
By Anthony Thomas on Oct 29, 2013 11:17:00 AM
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Today, Twitter has again announced further changes to its platform that will change the way in which customers and brands interact. This comes after the recent news regarding changes to the rules surrounding direct messages.

Their most recent announcement states that any Tweet that contains an attached image will automatically display a preview of the image directly in the user’s timeline.

Previously, followers of a brand would need to click “view photo” to expand a Tweet and see the attached image. While this has generally resulted in higher levels of engagement, this extra step was generally tiresome.

Furthermore, actions such as replying, retweeting or favoriting of Tweets will be possible without having to expand the Tweet.

Twitter enables always-visible images: The effect on Social Customer Service

The move to display a consistently sized preview image, which can be expanded to show a bigger version should your image be taller, will make what was previously a mostly text based feed more engaging for Twitter users.

How will always-visible images impact social customer service?

Images illustrating bad service will be more visible

In our recent report investigating brands who were re-directing social media complaints to traditional channels, we identified that many customers are Tweeting about customer service dissatisfaction while still in-store.

For retailers in particular this can be up to 14% of the Tweets they receive.

Accordingly, images illustrating bad experiences will be more visible to a user's followers that also follow your brand. Previous research has indicated up to 33% of customers will switch to a competitor if a brand appears unresponsive, highlighting the importance of responding quickly to such customer service issues. 

Communication of important service updates will be easier

Yesterday we outlined how some of our clients based in the U.K. had used social media to weather a disruptive storm to ensure customers were aware of any changes to scheduled train services, many of which included images to illustrate the level of disruption to their infrastructure or to thank people for their patience.

Going forward, images can be better utilized to grab a customer’s attention when communicating important messages and service updates. Being proactive with such communication can help reduce the burden both on social and the call center.

Marketing updates will attract more customer service questions

With increased engagement rates of up to 91% for Tweets that contain images compared to those that do not, we anticipate that the always-visible approach now being offered will result in even higher levels of engagement.

For brands that use images to market particular products or services, we expect there will be an increased level of customer service questions relating to the featured products or services as seen with Facebook dark posts. This now requires brands to ensure they’re responsive to avoid losing a sale to competitors.

Have you seen some great uses of images on Twitter by brands?

Let us know in the comments section below which brands have impressed you.

Topics: Customer Service

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