Huge update from Twitter. As of right now, anyone can schedule tweets up to a year in advance on any date and time that they choose. And you can do it right on Twitter.com.
Even better: you can now schedule photos using Twitter’s pic.twitter.com image sharer, something that, up until now, you have never been able to do with any other Twitter scheduling dashboard, including HootSuite.
This is great news for brands and marketers, of course, but it also adds a layer of convenience for everybody using Twitter, particularly with regard to scheduling photos in advance. I’ve tested this with both business and personal accounts and I can successfully schedule tweets, and tweets with photos, on both.
1. Head over to ads.twitter.com and login with your Twitter account
2. Click on Creatives > Tweets > Compose Tweet
3. Click on the Scheduling tab
4. Choose the date and time you would like the tweet to be published *
5. Compose your tweet as normal
6. Click the Schedule Tweet button
* Twitter will suggest a time a few minutes from now, or you can choose from a series of half-hour increments.
Whether Twitter rolls out this functionality to partners such as HootSuite remains to be seen, but right now if you want to schedule Twitter photos on Twitter to go live in your stream at some point in the future – and you should, as it’s the photos uploaded to pic.twitter.com that embed automatically within tweets and drive higher engagement levels with users, not third party image sharers – you have to do this through Twitter.com. On HootSuite you need to use the HootSuite image sharer, which has a negative impact on engagement rates.
And while these scheduling tools aren’t a complete disaster for HootSuite, which for me is still a much better all-purpose scheduling management tool, this move from Twitter is certainly a threat. And with a few more bells and whistles – for example, it would be nice to be able to edit scheduled tweets on ads.twitter.com – it could really undermine what HootSuite has worked really hard to build.
So here’s the bigger question: given their longstanding all your base are belong to us approach to third parties within their ecosystem, why didn’t Twitter do this years ago?