The dos and don'ts of Twitter images

By Hayley Dorney
Best practices
Man crouched down taking a photo with the camera held in front of his face, building block in the background

97% of people focus on visuals on Twitter1, so it’s important you have good imagery as part of your Twitter campaign and organic Tweets. To make sure your images meet the standards and expectations of people on Twitter, you should follow our best practices and tips. 

We've compiled the dos and don’ts that will help your Twitter images stand out on people’s Twitter feed and encourage engagement.


Use templates 

A good way to maximize your original image output is to create templates. Whether it's for a new article, a quote from an influencer or team member, or a promotion for your monthly newsletter, templates can save you a ton of time. More importantly, it's a great way to create consistent visuals and subtly include your branding in the images.

HubSpot France (@HubSpotFrance) creates a consistent visual style by using a template for their images, mixing up the use of the colors in their brand palette to help make their visuals instantly recognizable.

Choose your fonts carefully

If there’s text in your image, make sure that aside from being within your brand guidelines, the size, weight, and spacing are considered – these all affect the readability. 

Remember to never hide information in images – the main message you’re trying to convey, or the text that’s been included in your image – should also be available in the accompanying text. 

This way, those with visual disabilities using screen readers aren’t excluded from your messaging.

Make your images accessible

Always use an image description (also known as alt text) to describe any image you Tweet. Your alt text should be short but descriptive – on Twitter, you have 1,000 characters to play with, but keep in mind that screen readers stop reading at 200-250 characters.

For full guidelines on making your images more accessible, check out our blog post where our accessibility team shares their best practices for creating Twitter content.

Use illustrations 

Illustrations have the power to make complex products or ideas easier to understand. They’re also attention-grabbing and a fun way to show off your brand’s personality and brand palette. This can make for a highly visually appealing and consistent aesthetic on your account. 

When creating illustrations be sure to include your logo and place it clearly and prominently. This will help with brand recall and recognition.

Ecommerce brand Oorjit (@OorjitPlatform) uses colorful and fun illustrations to highlight their product and some of the professionals it’s targeted at.

Be creative with your format

With so much content out there from brands and businesses, it’s important to try to get creative with your visuals so you can cut through the noise – luckily, Twitter is all about creativity. Enter, Carousel Ads

Carousel Ads are an engaging Twitter ad format that support up to six swipeable, edge-to-edge images or videos in a single Tweet. Carousel Ads can support single or multi-destination, and link to up to six unique website destinations (multi-destination is not available for app destinations.) 

You can also run Carousels organically instead of paid ads – in the Tweet Composer, you have the option to run Carousels as organic or Promoted-only.

Want more inspiration? Here’s how your brand can use Carousel Ads on Twitter.

@dowanceramics uses Carousel Ads to showcase multiple products in one Tweet.


Use boring stock imagery 

As much as feasible, avoid using images that any other brand can download and use in their Tweets. 

If you have a photographer at your disposal – or someone on your team who enjoys photography as a side hobby – have them spend a couple of days taking photos that fit your brand guidelines. Maybe it’s arty shots of your offices, beautiful outdoor angles, or pictures of team members you’ve convinced to act as stand-in models (we recommend using treats as a persuasion tactic). 

If you don’t have the time or resources to take original pictures, there’s an easy compromise – making small adjustments to stock images, for instance, incorporating brand elements and filters, can help differentiate it.

Forget to correctly size your images

Every social media platform has its own specs for images. Using the same image for all platforms will result in some images being pixelated, blurry, or cut off. 

Before creating visual content, ensure you use the right proportions for the specific platform, and always optimize for mobile too. 

Twitter supports JPEG, GIF, and PNG file formats. 1200 x 1200 pixels is recommended for a 1:1 aspect ratio, and 1200 x 628 pixels is recommended for a 1.91:1 aspect ratio.

Use bland or generic colors

Make sure to use eye-catching and visually appealing colors as much as your brand guidelines and palette allow. Think about how many images you see as you scroll on Twitter – bold and beautiful colors can help entice people to pause on your Tweet. 

Check out an example created by one of our very own designers, using a complimentary mix of our brand colors:

Multicoloured photo of a cat replicated into three columns in the Twitter brand colours

Looking for more dos and don’ts? Check out the dos and don’ts of hashtags to help your Tweets get optimum visibility and encourage engagement.

 1. Source: “Why Twitter” Competitive Research, Kantar Millward Brown, 2017. 



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