Keeping up with the Platform X
Since Elon Musk rebranded Twitter to “X” in July, he’s raced full throttle toward his vision of the “everything app.” Both before and since the rebrand, Musk has rolled out algorithm updates, new platform features, subscriber perks, and free rider limitations at an overwhelming pace. Many of these changes revolve around a central goal: getting people to spend more time inside the platform.
Twitter content strategies won’t necessarily work on X: Your posting strategy must evolve if you want to stay relevant. If it feels overwhelming to keep track of, don’t worry – I’m going to break down the most important recent updates and how you can adjust to these changes to improve post performance. Yes, tweets are now called posts. That’s going to be a hard one to get used to.
Here are the top four recent changes to platform X to keep in mind as you draft your next post:
Headlines Are Out
Now, when you include a news link in your post, the headline will not populate. Instead, the domain will appear in the bottom left corner of the article’s cover image. This makes it harder to distinguish a link from a photo, which was Musk’s goal: to get users to spend more time on X than external sites.
Knowing this, be sure to include a call-to-action at the end of your post that lets the reader know the image attached is a clickable link. For example, you can write, “Click the link below to learn more”, and include an emoji that points down (if that aligns with your account’s voice). Also, when creating key images for a blog or article, consider including the headline as we did for the article linked in the post below. Canva simplifies the graphic design process by offering a plethora of templates.
Videos Are Preferred
The new algorithm prefers video content over static images or text-only posts. Why? Remember Musk’s goal: to get users to spend more time on X. More videos posted also gives the X team more opportunity to monetize the platform by incorporating ads and a chance to compete with YouTube for popular creators.
The good news is that you don’t have to record new video content for each of your posts moving forward. Canva makes it easy to animate your designs, which turns them into videos that can be downloaded as MP4 files. Here’s a tutorial on how you can animate a simple graphic.
Replies Are Emphasized
According to the new algorithm, X is putting more emphasis on replies to posts. Replies are getting more attention than retweets on the “For You” timeline because they expose new users to content they otherwise might not have seen. Musk’s strategy behind this update is to benefit his ad revenue share program, but you can take advantage of this feature even if you’re not participating in ads on X.
When you see a post worth sharing, reply and retweet instead of simply retweeting – your reply will be the more visible action. In your own posts, insert a call to action: Pose a question asking for the reader’s opinion to engage your audience and start conversation in the replies. The more engagement you spark – and the more you engage with other content creators – the better your reach.
In another recent change to the platform, posts are now eligible to appear in the main feed for twice as long – 48 hours instead of 24 – so you have even more time to drive engagement with your highest-quality content. “Posting and ghosting” has never been best practice, but now it’s more important than ever to participate in exchanges with your followers.
Posts are Longer
X now allows Blue subscribers to publish posts with an extended character limit of 25,000. If you’re curious to see what 25,000 characters looks like in a post, take a minute to scroll through this example. Blue subscribers also have the option to seamlessly insert pictures within the body of their posts rather than just attach all pictures at the bottom. In addition, bold and italic text formatting options are available. Simply put, Blue subscribers are able to post in the format of blogs or articles. By expanding this functionality of the app and offering monetization, X encourages creators to post their work directly to their platform which, of course, feeds into Musk’s main goal.
If you’re a Blue subscriber, know that you no longer have to fit your message (with hashtags and links) into a mere 280 characters. With or without monetization, take advantage of this feature by including more detailed information in your posts. Post articles, blogs, press releases, etc. directly to X to eliminate the need to include external links in your posts and improve their performance with the current algorithm.
By following these tips, you can create a posting strategy that is tailored to the new X algorithm and helps you reach your target audience. Be open and stay flexible: the platform could change again at any time. When in doubt remember: X wants people to spend time on X. If your content strategy keeps people engaged on the app, Musk and company will reward it.
We’re going to keep this blog updated as the X platform transforms, so make sure to check back to stay in the loop. Want hands-on help with your X strategy? Caster’s got you covered.