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June 14, 2017

Twitter just made Direct Messages more useful for brands by adding buttons

by John_A

Why it matters to you

While other social media platforms have featured action buttons alongside their bots for years, Twitter is a bit late to the game. But it’s finally joining the club.

The breadth of activities you can complete via bots on Twitter is about to get a lot wider. On Tuesday, June 13, Twitter began rolling out new functionality to its Direct Message bots that will allow developers to establish concrete actions, which means that your Twitter bots will soon look a lot more like Facebook bots. As of today, June 13, Twitter bots will allow people to buy items or services, link to websites, or catalyze other calls-to-action or conversational cues.

The lack of such a feature may come as a surprise to social media users, who have long become accustomed to bots that can actually do things. And while VentureBeat points out that call-to-action buttons have been integrated into Twitter ads for quite some time now, this is the first time that these action buttons will be added to DMs.

“Anyone can create an experience within Direct Messages, whether it’s a business or an organization, as long as you use our APIs or use a tool which is built on our APIs,” a Twitter spokesperson told VentureBeat in an email. That said, this new functionality will likely be most useful for brands and advertisers, who are looking to improve customer service or customer engagement.

Twitter will allow brands to attach up to three buttons to any message, and the text on each of these buttons is fully customizable, and supports emojis, too. Links can go to anywhere on the internet, or you can link to another Twitter account, or some other functionality within the platform.

You can already see the availability of buttons in bots today, with functionality on both the iOS and Android apps, and the desktop client, too.

So start tweeting, brands. There’s never been a better time to engage with your customers than today.




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