It is important that your profile picture reflect the branding you have already established. You want some one who catches one of your tweets to know for sure that it is from your company. The simplest way to accomplish this is by using your company logo. If you have a square-ish logo, congratulations! You can probably go ahead and upload your beautiful high-res jpg to Twitter. Keep in mind that even if your logo mostly fits it should still be readable if it is super tiny. Twitter profile images can show up as small as 31 pixels square.
You may also want to consider using something other than your logo for your profile picture. If your brand is highly personalized you may want to use a photo of yourself, rather than your logo. If your brand sells products highlight your best seller. Bottom line for any profile picture is: Your social media profiles should reflect your brand, and decisions made with purpose.
Remember that your profile picture is going to be swimming with lots of other fish. The simplest thing to do is to upload an image of your logo on a white background. But, because it is the simplest answer, that means that most people are tweeting with white background logos. One easy way that you can stand out is to use your brand colors strategically to standout from other profiles. Make sure that colors are chosen with a reason, and that it supports your current brand efforts.
In the digital world consumers equate the quality of your images with the quality of your company. Crappy images tell consumers, clients and investors that quality is not important to you. Twitter runs all images through a processor to make them all the same size and converts them to a jpg file. The best way to ensure that the image stays beautiful when you upload it is to match the specs, otherwise Twitter will downsample, resize, and otherwise degrade the quality of the image. All images should be a minimum of 72 dpi.
500×500 px at 72dpi – maximum size your profile picture will be viewed
400×400 px – Twitter’s recommended size to upload
73×73 px – this size appears at the top of your account page
*48×48 px – the most commonly viewed size, this is what shows up in a twitter feed
31×31 px – the smallest your profile will ever be
Twitter offers an option to upload a header image to your profile. This image will be seen anyone visits your twitter feed. You can opt not to upload a header image and just use a profile color instead. However, you will be losing out on some pretty prime, free branding real estate. Your header image, like all of your graphics should support your brand message and give more clarity to what your business has the offer.
Now you might be thinking: “How much text can I cram into 1252×626 pixels?”. And I will tell you to avoid text all together in the header image. Don’t do it! There are several reasons why you wouldn’t want to use text in the header image. The first is that the header is used in every Twitter application, including phone apps. In some applications Twitter will put your profile picture over top of your header image, that means that your dissertation is lost behind your logo, username, bio, and drop shadows. The second reason is downsampling. Just like with the profile pictures, Twitter is going to crunch your photo to be as small of a file size as possible. Inevitably your text is going to be pixilated with lots of little artifacts around it. The third reason: people are looking at your profile to read your tweets, not your company history on a background image. Most of the time followers are going to skip right over it and dive into your feed.
If you have to put text in your header image use san-serif, simple fonts to minimize quality issues. Keep text phrases very short and sweet. Save long text for your website and Twitter bio. Position your text towards the center of the image. Twitter doesn’t always use the whole image and you risk losing letters or whole phrases if your content is too far to one side.
The header image could be a wide variety of things, but it is most important that it coordinate with your profile image and support the type of content shared on your company’s Twitter account. For example, if your Twitter account focuses on providing product updates to consumers, a photo of your office building might not make sense. Like every part of your branding, take just a few minutes to brain storm the best solution for your company.
Whatever image you choose for your header, it should be high resolution. Export the largest file that Twitter will allow you to upload. All images should be a minimum of 72 dpi.
2560×600 px – maximum size
1500×500 px – Twitter’s recommended size to upload
1024×280 px – minimum size header will appear
3MB – maximum file size allowed