Twitter has taken to rewarding select power users with direct messages when their tweets get major reach, TechCrunch reported today.
The new feature is nested within the Twitter account @AchievementBird. Described as “a Twitter experiment,” the account goes by the name Achievements, and as of now is open to only some users.
One screenshot depicting @AchievementBird in action contains a message acknowledging a user when a tweet “received 5x your average Retweets, and reached 12x more people than usual!” Another message summarized a good day’s worth of account activity: “15 Retweets, 37 Favorites, 105 Mentions, and 2 Follows.”
@AchievementBird appears to be the latest Twitter experiment taking the shape of an actual Twitter account. It follows previous barely hidden Twitter experiments @MagicRecs, which suggests users to follow and tweets to read, and @eventparrot, which sends messages containing links to tweets on breaking news.
The bigger story is that Twitter has got to keep wowing users in order to make more people want to join and to eventually bring in far more money — more along the lines of Facebook.
Facebook reports more than a billion monthly active users and $2.01 billion in revenue in the third quarter of last year. Twitter trails behind its big brother in the social networking family with more than 231.7 average monthly active users and $168.6 million in revenue in the third quarter.
Twitter could boost those numbers by continuing to add features that enhance user experience and foster a more personal connection to the service.
It’s probably smart of Twitter to turn on these new features for only a small percentage of users, so the rest of us can get jealous and eager to try it out. It’s sort of like how Facebook introduces incremental changes — except that the number of people who can see them is probably fewer.