We've heard a lot about Twitter cards recently, but what are they exactly? You might have heard that it is not that simple to set up and that, much to the chagrin of marketers without coding prowess, there is coding involved as well. At this point you might be thinking: "You have to code? So I need my development team to implement Twitter cards? Or I need to learn how to do it myself?" Now, before some of you give up the idea of Twitter cards entirely, please give me the opportunity to explain that the coding aspect of it really isn't that complicated, and that the fleeting extra minutes you spend on Twitter cards could have a huge impact on the ROI for your business.

What is a Twitter card?

Whenever a user includes a link from your website in one of their tweets, a visual "card" image is added below the tweet. Twitter extracts these images from meta tags that you can add to your website and caches them when the link is used in a tweet.
Example of a Twitter Card
Looks familiar doesn't it? This is because you've seen it before on Facebook when you post a link and an image appears. Just like Facebook, these Twitter cards can enhance your content with cool, appealing images that users might be more inclined to click and open. Outside of providing just a card that displays a prominent image, there is a summary card that contains simple information, and even an app card that gives users easy access to download an app. To find out more about the different card types and which one is right for your business, check out the developer section on Twitter's website. As you can see from our example above, Twitter cards can make your blog content much more interesting for users from a visual perspective- instead of just a short description and a link.

Why should my business use Twitter cards?

Twitter cards are free and don't cost you anything except a little more effort and time. Unlike Facebook, Twitter is much more text heavy with tweet after tweet appearing in your users' feeds. If your business' content stands out with Twitter cards, your users will be more open to engaging with your tweets and clicking through to your website. Twitter cards can be the next step to drive more traffic and conversions for your business and boost the quality of your social media marketing.

Okay I'm convinced. How do I start?

Implementing Twitter cards is a relatively simple process. I've covered everything you need to do below in a few simple steps. You're just a couple lines of text away from boosting your online ROI with Twitter cards!
  1. Choose your card. There are many different types of Twitter cards to choose from, and making sure that you use the one that is the best fit for each page of your company's website is extremely important. Does the link that you are providing lead to a page with product information, media, or does it encourage users to download a form? Figure out what the main objective of your website's page is and choose the Twitter card that best fits the content on that page.
  2. Add meta tags to your page. While this is the step that makes a lot of digital marketing professionals balk at adding Twitter cards, don't worry! Twitter has come out with a list of the meta tags you need to add to your website's coding. Just add the appropriate tags, and you're done with the hardest part of implementing Twitter cards!
  3. Get verified. After you add the meta tags to your website's code, Twitter has a verification process before you're approved to use Twitter cards in order to make sure your website is credible. In order to make sure everything looks as it should, remember to verify your website with their validator tool, and there is even a Twitter card preview to see what your card will look like.

Twitter Card Analytics

Twitter also provides Twitter Card Analytics, so you can see the effect that cards will have on your overall Twitter ROI. From metrics like clicks and impressions to overall user activity, you can measure your business' impact on Twitter and the role Twitter cards can play in helping you to achieve your goals. You have now learned what Twitter cards are and how to implement them to your tweets! There you have it, you've mastered the Twitter Card! If you have any other questions, let us know in the comments section below or by tweeting us at @BFMweb.
Marketing With Twitter Whitepaper