You never really hear anybody say, ‘Go over and ‘favorite’ us on Twitter!’, but you do hear them say, ‘Give us a ‘like’ on Facebook!’ While some may mark this up to a difference in platform preference, what it really boils down to is that Twitter has simply been less often preferred by businesses when trying to gain traction on social media. In order to catch up to their competitor and to capitalize on the preference of verbage with ‘like’-ing something, Twitter has now changed their star icons for ‘favorites’ to heart icons for ‘likes’. From now on, you can ‘like’ things on Facebook - AND Twitter.
Why the Change of Heart?
Twitter is explaining the change over to ‘like’-ing and hearts in a few different ways. First, the star icon has been notoriously confusing for newcomers to Twitter. In order to make things more user-friendly, they’ve opted for a heart icon, which they describe as universally understood across languages, time zones, and cultures. Indeed, the heart resonates as an easy way to express a range of positive emotions, which is why it has been a preferred icon of choice for users. The goal of these icons is to make the expression of emotion as easy as a quick touch of the button, so having icons that reflect that ‘ease of use’ mentality is the key to seeing the most engagement.
In fact, their sister company Periscope already utilizes the heart icon, and users have found it easy to use. Now it’s being introduced into Twitter and Vine as well, ensuring a global form of communication language across the platforms.
Potential Impacts on Twitter
As Twitter users begin to interact with the new icon, we’ll likely see a boost in ‘likes’ (not ‘favorites’), which can lead to more engagement on the platform and even, perhaps, a boost in user interaction and platform use overall. Facebook’s user database numbers in the billions, and Twitter’s database has remained in the millions thus far. As communication becomes easier on Twitter, we may see the competition rise among these outlets.
See the Changes on GaggleAMP
GaggleAMP users can expect to see these changes for Twitter reflected in our product as well. We want to ensure that we’re up-to-date on all of the newest changes in social media in order to keep you ahead of the curve.