Twitter tests Branded Likes, giving campaigns animated presence on crowded feeds
Twitter is testing a new feature, called Branded Likes, to help brands stand out on crowded social media feeds and encourage users to share campaign hashtags.
With Branded Likes, advertisers can customize Twitter’s like button with animated brand imagery that can complement a campaign. Brands choose hashtags that can trigger Branded Likes in organic and promoted tweets for a period of 24 hours. Users who click or tap the posts, receive a surprise animation and can then enable the feature in their own posts when they use the hashtag themselves.
“We know that some of the best brand moments deserve a little spark and delight,” a Twitter spokesperson said.
The feature is currently in beta testing, but brands like NASA, the National Basketball Association and Disney+ are already giving it a try. On Wednesday, NASA used an animated rocket ship as a Branded Like with the hashtag #CountdownToMars to celebrate the Thursday launch of its latest rover to Mars. And on Thursday, the NBA used a bouncing basketball as a Branded Like with the hashtag #WholeNewgame to promote the basketball season’s opening night.
On Friday, Disney+ became the first brand to pay to use the feature as part of the ad product beta test. The streaming platform used it to promote the premiere of “Black Is King,” Beyoncé’s highly anticipated visual album inspired by “The Lion King.” Disney+ attached animated lions to the promoted hashtag #BlackIsKing and tweeted about the experience. By late afternoon, the tweet had garnered more than 70,000 likes and 8,000 retweets.
Branded Likes are an option for advertisers in the United States and Japan under Twitter’s First View, which offers marketers the top ad spots that appear in users’ timelines. Advertisers select one hashtag to trigger the Branded Like, and can pair it with a First View, Promoted Trend or Promoted Trend Spotlight. Twitter Arthouse, the platform’s in-house influencer agency, is behind the creative. Twitter would not reveal how much Branded Likes cost.
Twitter users have noticed the new feature and have been using the Branded Like-enabled hashtags to make their own tweets come alive.