The Direct Message (DM) campaigns tool allows you to target a specific audience with a personalised DM and monitor the progress and measure the effectiveness of your campaign.
A Direct Message is a private message, sent to a follower or followers, which does not appear on your timeline. DM campaigns are great for PR, promotions (e.g. target existing customers) or event management (e.g. import attendees from a text file and send them a DM).
Direct Message Twitter limits
- Maximum DMs per day: please read DM campaigns – best practices and follow our recommendations. (1)
- Maximum 10 000 characters per message (including links). (2)
- Maximum 25 000 DMs per campaign. For larger campaigns please contact your Audiense account manager.
(1) Messages are sent consecutively one after the other.
(2) A URL of any length is altered to 22 characters, even if the link itself is less than 22 characters long, and the character count reflects this. So, the character limit for the message is really 9978.
VERY IMPORTANT – Before creating a campaign read our DM campaigns – best practices about how to optimise your targeting and customisation to create relevant campaigns and so avoid spam filters and the real possibility of having your Twitter account suspended.
Direct Message campaigns
1. Select Direct Message campaigns from the engagement drop-down menu on the top menu bar.
2. You will see the DM campaigns listing screen.
Click create new campaign in the top right of the screen to open the DM campaign editor (See Create a DM campaign below).
The DM campaigns listing screen shows a summary of each campaign you have created.
- Title – The name of your campaign and the status. You can remove the campaign from the listing. Click copy to see campaign details and to create a new campaign based on this campaign; you can edit the new campaign in the campaign editor. Click on the title of the campaign to view the DM campaign report.
- Account – The account from which the DM campaign was sent.
- Targeting – The audience of the campaign, i.e. the recipients of the DM.
- Content – The message you are using in the campaign.
- Created – The date and time the campaign was created.
- Scheduled – The date and time of the next step in the campaign.
- Progress – The percentage of the campaign which has been delivered.
You can reorder the listing and modify the number of campaigns (10, 50, 100, 250, 500) the listing screen shows using the drop-down menus and select the radio buttons to toggle ascending or descending order.
You can filter the accounts which appear using the drop-down menu to see only the campaigns sent from that account or search for a specific campaign.
Create a DM campaign
You can open the DM campaign editor in two ways:
a) Click create new campaign to open the editor from the campaigns listing screen as mentioned above.
b) Open the editor from the community wall in which case:
2. Click DM Campaign from the all criteria drop-up menu on the community bottom bar.
Both method a) or b) open the DM campaign editor.
The campaign editor has various emerging panels:
- Campaign name
- Campaign settings
1. First give the campaign a name.
2. Select the account from which you want to launch the DM campaign from the drop-down menu.
3. Use the targeting panel to refine who you will send the DMs to.
- Followers of @account – @account is the account you selected in step 2 above.
- Members of source who follow @account – If you select this option the drop-down menu is activated and you can choose from any of your sources added to Audiense.
- Criteria preselected on the community wall – If you accessed the DM campaign editor from the community wall this option is the default option. You can also select either of the two options above if you want. This option is not available if you accessed the DM campaign editor from the the DM campaigns listing screen.
You can exclude the recipients of previous campaigns and/or audience members. To toggle visibility of the two drop-down menus click the arrowhead to the right. You can select any number of previous campaigns and/or audiences from the drop-down menus.
The summary panel shows in real-time any changes to the targeting you apply, including exclusions. Click the modify filters button to open the search/filter target modification panel.
This panel functions in the same way as the search/filter sidebar. Use the search boxes, filters and tags to refine your target audience. Don’t forget you can use advanced syntax in your search criteria. Click apply when you are happy with the targeting.
The size panel shows in real-time the number of people who will receive your campaign message, based on the targeting you have applied. However, the size and recipients preview do not reflect any campaigns or audiences you have excluded. Click preview recipients to see information about those users you have targeted.
4. Use the analytics panel to choose an analytics service to receive enhanced insights.
Use the drop-down menu to select:
- None – You will not receive insights from any analytics service. 
- Bitly – Connect your account in settings –> services.
- Google Analytics – Connect your account in settings –> services.
- Po.st – You will need to input your API key.
 Data for some graphs and charts of the DM campaign report are only available if you select an analytics service. If no service is selected these charts will be empty.
5. In the content panel write your message.
You can use merge tags to dynamically add variable content to the Tweet to personalise your message. Merge tags are: |FIRSTNAME|, |FULLNAME|, |LOCATION| or |USERNAME|.
Click upload media to add multimedia content, i.e. an image or video, to your campaign message. This content must comply with the specification given in the notes at the end of this post.
The content you add appears at the top of the content panel above the message. Click the x icon in the top right corner to remove the content.
When you are happy with the message click save. You will see the following message confirmation screen. Click edit to modify the message.
To optimise the message content and improve campaign results we strongly recommend you read our best practices.
6. In the campaign settings panel modify the DMs per day, the total DMs to be sent and the time between DMs (range <1 second to 10 minutes).
Any content which needs revising before you can launch the campaign is highlighted in red and a warning message appears.
7. OPTIONAL. If you want to test your campaign on a limited set of users click test campaign to test on a maximum of ten users. In the emerging panel press enter, tab or comma after each @username or you can copy and paste @usernames separated by commas, e.g. @account1, @account2, @account3 and they will automatically split. When you’re ready to test click launch Test.
8. OPTIONAL. Click schedule campaign to modify the start date and time of the campaign Use the drop-down menu to select the time zone.
We recommend that you use the filter to find the most suitable time zone based on city location, e.g. Europe/London and don’t rely on GMT values as these can be confusing, especially in the UK which does not maintain the same GMT value due to British summertime daylight saving.
Click schedule campaign to return to the campaign panel.
9. You can save your campaign as a draft or, if you’re happy with the campaign, click review and launch campaign.
10. You’ll see the campaign review panel which shows a summary of the campaign details. Click launch your DM campaign to start your campaign or back to editor to change the campaign details.
All the users who form the audience of your campaign are automatically tagged for you to quickly identify them in the future. The format of the tag is “DM” + campaign name.
Multimedia content must comply with the following specifications:
- Format – JPG, PNG, GIF
- Size – Maximum of 5 MB
- Size – Maximum of 512 MB
- Duration – Maximum of 140 seconds
- Resolution – 32 x 32 to 1280 x 1024 pixels
- Aspect ratio – 1:3 to 3:1
- Frame rate – Maximum of 40 frames per second
- Audio – AAC Mono or stereo
If you remove a campaign from the listing before it’s scheduled to start, perhaps the name is wrong or the targeting erroneous, then the campaign is eliminated and will not be sent.
You can receive Messages from anyone even if you don’t follow them. Check the box next to receive direct messages from anyone in your Security and privacy settings on twitter.com. You can reply to anyone who sends you a Direct Message, regardless of whether or not that person follows you.