Twitter annual 'Flight' conference is being held today with the platform showcasing a range of new options and tools to help users find new ways to utilize tweets and tweet activity. One of the early announcements from the event is a new way to showcase tweet content on websites through an improved embedding system which enables users to display tweet collections like this:
Looks pretty cool, right? Twitter's promoting this as a 'new way to tell stories' via tweet, with customizable collections which can be shown in this grid format.
Here's how you do it:
1. Log in to TweetDeck or Curator
Most likely, you'll be using TweetDeck, as Curator is not available to all users (it's aimed at publishers). Once in TweetDeck, click on the '+' on the left side-bar and click on the option to add a new 'Collection' stream.
2. Move the Tweets you want in your collection to your 'Collection' column
You can easily select the tweets you want in the collection by dragging them across to the column using the directional arrow button at the bottom right of each tweet.
Drag the tweets across in the order you want them to appear in the grid - the last one you enter will be the first one shown (if you have a video tweet, placing it last is a good way to showcase that content).
3. Export your collection to Twitter.com
Once you've compiled the content you want in your grid, click on the column options at the top, click on 'Share' at the bottom of the drop down window, then click on 'View on twitter.com'.
This will open up a new window with the collection shown on Twitter.
4. Enter the Collection URL into publish.twitter
Thus far, all this process is nothing new - users have been able to create collections like this for some time. But this next step is where the magic happens. Using Twitter's new 'Publish' platform, you can enter in the URL of your collection from Twitter.com.
Once entered, Publish will return a grid of your collection, along with an embed code which you can use to display your new collection on your site.
The process is straight-forward and produces a great looking display of your tweet content, expanding the utility of your tweets.
"At any time, you can update your collection of Tweets (from any tool that supports the Collections API) and it will automatically update on your site or app. There's no additional embed code, updates of your website, or need to re-submit your apps to the appstores needed."
So if you want to keep your embedded collection updated, you can simply update the list and the grid display will change accordingly. It's a simple but great addition, which no doubt many will be keen to utilize to highlight their Twitter activity to a new audience.
The new collections options are integrated with TweetDeck, Curator, Spredfast, Dataminr, ScribbleLive, Wayin and Flowics, all of which can be used to curate your tweet content.
Interestingly, as noted by Twitter's Michael Ducker at today's announcement, Twitter is also looking to use the publish platform to expand the display options for tweets, including out of home digital displays, a feature the company's working on with advertising giant JCDecaux. Given this, you may be seeing a lot more of these grid-type Twitter displays, in various locations, in the near future.