Twitter, which has been home to many important movements, including #BlacksLivesMatter and #MeToo, has made an effort to highlight mask wearing as the COVID-19 pandemic rages on. The social platform recently turned its like button into an animated mask emoji any time a user likes a tweet with the #WearaMask hashtag. Twitter then extended this to an outdoor campaign by partnering with seven US cities, as reported by AdWeek. Users’ pro-mask tweets were printed on billboards, murals, sidewalks, and other landmarks in high-traffic areas. With people spending even more time exposed to digital advertising during the pandemic, moving to an out-of-home campaign is a smart way to bolster messaging.
“As always, the people on Twitter say it best. Masks are a huge conversation around the world, and we’re happy to help cities tackle mask caution fatigue with tweets that will make people smile and hopefully mask up,” said Leslie Berland, Twitter’s CMO and head of people.
A few months ago, the official Twitter account tweeted that users could finally get the oft-requested edit button when everyone wears a mask. As AdAge noted, this became Twitter’s most liked and retweeted tweet in history, with over 2.8 million likes to date. Leveraging its own users in a campaign for social good is not only a smart way to get publicity, but by also putting mask-related tweets in outdoor spaces in major US cities, the platform is reminding people to wear a mask when they need it most.
The Twitter audience may be more receptive than other social platforms to campaigns of this style as well. According to Interpret’s New Media Measure®, 8% of Twitter users in the US state that they are actively involved in political movements or campaigns on the platform, compared to 6% of Facebook users. Additionally, a quarter of the US Twitter audience is likely to share an important article they read, which can help other users become more informed on critical topics such as mask-wearing.