Now You Can Create Twitter Moments via Mobile Devices
Back in September, Twitter (finally) announced that all users would be able to create their own Moments, Twitter's narrative-style 'storytelling by tweet' device which they introduced just over a year ago.
For everyone who wants to make a Moment - starting today you can! Creators everywhere can now tell stories with Tweets. pic.twitter.com/ZJtNBoTPWf- Twitter (@twitter) September 28, 2016
And while Moments has failed to gain the traction that Twitter had hoped it would, opening up the option to all users presented a whole new option, a whole new canvas for people to work with, and there's been some great examples of brands who've used the option to create interesting, compelling new campaigns.
But the expansion of Moments to all users can with a significant caveat - Moments could only be created via the desktop version of the platform.
For publishers and creators, this was no huge deal - most of the polished work you see in campaigns is edited and constructed on desktop anyway. But for everyday users, this was a big problem, which is especially relevant given the trend of social storytelling (Snapchat, Instagram Stories) that Twitter's looking to tap into by giving users the ability to create their own multiple tweet story.
Given that 82% of Twitter users access the platform via mobile device, and 90% of Twitter video views happen on mobile, the inability to create your own Moment on mobile was clearly going to inhibit take-up of the option. But from today, that limitation is no more.
Twitter has officially announced that users can now create and share their own Moments via mobile device.
With Moments, you can bring together favorite Tweets to tell richer stories - rolling out on mobile starting today.https://t.co/SMqIZ1Zngo- Twitter (@twitter) November 30, 2016
To create a Moment via mobile, you first start with a tweet you want to add - go to the drop-down menu in the top right and you'll see a new option - "Add to Moment".
Once you added your first tweet, you can select additional tweets to add, from your own or those you've liked - you can tap on each to add them to your Moment collection.
You can also search by keyword to add additional tweets to your Moment.
Once you've added all the relevant tweets, you can re-order them, change the background color on specific tweets and even zoom in on the tweet images to further enhance and personalize your story.
You can then add a cover, along with a description of your Moment, and hit 'Publish'.
As shown in the GIF above, when you're done you'll be able to send your Moment out via tweet, while you'll also be given a unique URL for your Moment which you can share outside of Twitter to connect people to your collection (or embed your Moment on other sites). Note too that you can also select 'Finish later' at any stage if you want to save your Moment and come back to it another time.
It's a simple, functional process that'll no doubt get more people interested in creating their own Moments - or at least trying it out - but it does make you wonder it Moments might have gained more traction if Twitter had just released it to all users from the beginning, rather than starting out with only selected publishers and Twitter's own editorial team.
Right now, it's hard to know what to make of Moments. Stats released earlier this year showed that Moments has only driven minor increases in overall engagement on the platform, but at the same time, Twitter themselves have been creating more and more of them - up from around 20-30 per day initially to around 250 a day now. Twitter hasn't specifically broken out Moments engagement since that initial update, but in their Q3 earnings report, they did note that daily active usage rates have been increasing year-on-year, a direct result, they say, of their overall product improvements.
Clearly they see Moments playing a part in this - but at the same time, reports circulated recently that Twitter was looking to replace the Moments tab in the mobile app with a 'Happening' or 'Explore' option instead.
Those options - seen in testing phase by some users - still included links to Moments, but they de-emphasized the option, which appeared to be a concession that Moments had failed to deliver, and that it would likely be shuffled off to another area of the app.
But there's still a lot of potential in Moments, and a lot of ways it can be used to enhance your Twitter outreach efforts. And as noted, given the popularity of Snapchat Stories (used by 50 million people per day) and Instagram Stories (100 million users per day), there's clearly a demand for more contextual social storytelling devices, beyond just single posts.
Twitter faces an uphill battle in getting users to see the benefits and potential of creating their own Moments, but a simple, mobile user-friendly process is an essential first step.
Based on this initial outline, it looks like they've got this element right.
Follow Andrew Hutchinson on Twitter