Brands should take advantage of Twitter's latest functionality tweak: Favorited Tweets in highly active users' timelines.

Brands intrigued by the possibility of Twitter making social marketing content visible to larger audiences should take note: Twitter CEO Dick Costolo confirmed the update. Users will see Tweets that the people they follow have favorited – specifically when they’ve pulled/clicked-to-refresh at least two times and there’s no new content to share. The thinking is that people who are constantly trying to refresh their feeds are hungry for more social posts and won’t mind seeing Tweets from people they haven’t followed.

Turning connections into content paths

When this feature first started appearing in users’ feeds, there was speculation that Twitter was going to transform its interface into a Facebook-style utility, as Brafton reported. Brands may have eyed the possibility for even greater content visibility, but Twitter seems to have split the difference without alienating core users.Twitter understands there are two kinds of user: one who gets plenty of instant updates and links to external content as it is, and one who is so determined to watch, learn and see more she won’t mind some twice-removed content. By finding a function separating the two (pull-by-refresh more than twice), the network was able to come up with a solution that didn’t drive either away.

 Social reach just got extended

So what should brands be doing to take advantage of the fertilizer being added to Twitter’s social media marketing landscape? First and foremost, the network has become even more valuable as a thought leadership platform. The type of user who is going to constantly refresh – and therefore see a wider spectrum of content choices – is one who likely follows social conversations and looks for in-depth content with a strong voice and tone.

It’s also essential to pay attention to engagement metrics – particularly overlooked ones like Favorites. As Brafton reported, that particular function never really seemed to have a purpose – until now. A Favorite isn’t just a declawed Like. It’s a gateway to more involved users who have the potential to boost your content’s overall reach.

Alex Butzbach is a Marketing Writer at Brafton. He studied Communications at Boston College, and after a brief stint teaching English in Japan, he entered the world of content marketing. When he isn't writing and researching, he can be found on a bike somewhere in Metro Boston.