Why Create Your Own Custom Twitter Background?
If you are serious about getting traffic and targeted leads from Twitter, then you should seriously consider creating your own, customized background. And, needless to say, you do need a custom profile picture – and I do recommend a personal picture (meaning the picture of a person), even if you are tweeting for a company or a website.
The free backgrounds provided on the Twitter site may not look bad, but a unique Twitter background will help your branding, help you stand out from all the other Twitter users, and definitely raise your credibility – something we all aspire to. Custom background will increase your chances that your profile will capture reader’s attention and make a memorable first impression. This dramatically increases the probability that you’ll get more targeted Twitter followers.
Using a customized Twitter background has many advantages, but above all it provides an opportunity to show off much more information about yourself, your website and your products/services than you are normally allowed to enter in your bio box, such as information yourself, company, products, and brands; a larger profile picture of yourself, a company and or brand logo; tag lines (slogans), adddresses of other websites that you may have; detailed contact info (address, phone, fax), as well as addresses to other social media profiles – Facebook, LinkedIn, Digg, MySpace, Skype, YouTube, Flickr, and Blogs.
Of course don’t go overboard. Don’t crowd the space with too much information.
Think about what is important for your followers to know about you, and then choose the elements that will convey more about you, interest potential followers, and create a good first impression.
If nothing else, make a statement and memorable impression – it will help you stand out from the crowd.
How to Create A Custom Background: Image Dimensions
When creating the background image, it is important to consider the image dimensions. An image that is not properly sized can be covered up by your Twitter profile or can start to tile, which often leads to an undesired effect.
To prevent tiling of the background image image, the image dimensions should be at least 1600px wide by 1200px tall. This will work with almost all screen resolutions. (Resolutions to design for: 1024 x 764 (#1 used right now), 1280 x 800 (2nd place)).
If you want to add a left-hand column, it should be narrow enough not to be covered up by the central Twitter content – under 200px. For more information on dimensions, you may want to check out Croncast and their numbers.
Creating your custom background image requires some patience and trial-and-error. If you’re not a designer, here are some tools that can help.
7 helpful Twitter Background Resources
Not only do many of these tools provide pre-designed backgrounds, but many can also automatically update your background, provide detailed information and FAQs, and even fully-functional image editors. Here are a few of the best:
1. MyTweetSpace: MyTweetSpace is one of the simplest ways to create a Twitter background with minimal effort. It allows users to create badges, add graphics, play with text, and more to create elegant backgrounds and left-hand text columns. You can even log in with Twitter and MyTweetSpace will automatically update your background.
2. TwitterBacks: This website provides a set of templates perfect for creating your ideal Twitter background. The templates come in PSD (Photoshop) form. In fact, my Twitter account utilizes a TwitterBack template as the basis for my design. Can you guess which one?
3. TweetStyle: TweetStyle offers free background templates, custom Twitter backgrounds, and a few useful blog posts on the subject of the backdrop.
4. Free Twitter Designer: This handy little app provides an easy-to-use image editor to help you create a professional-looking theme.
6. TwitterGallery: TwitterGallery is a directory of themes based on color and category. You can even click the “install” button under any theme, log into Twitter, and poof!…your background is ready.
7. Peekr(): If you stumble across a great Twitter background and want to take a quick look at it in its pure form, the Peekr bookmarklet is the way to go. Click on the bookmarklet once to show only the background, and press it again to bring everything back to normal.
How to Change The Background Image
This one is easy.
Go to Settings, then Design, and click on “Change background image.”
You’ll be able browse your computer and add any image you’d like, so long as it’s under 800k in size, GIF, JPG, or PNG.
You may also need to change the background colors and font colors.