Creativity Magazine

Little Birdie Whispers In My Ear, Inspires New Twitter Profile Header

By Mrstrongest @mrstrongarm

Some of my “friends” tell me it’s only natural that I should tweet, because I’m a little cuckoo. Hmm…

Thanks a lot.

I do have a Twitter account, and I’ve posted a little over 700 tweets to date.

What do I tweet about? Most of my tweets reference illustration, Photoshop resources, marketing, blogging, and social media. I try to post links that potential clients and fellow creatives and bloggers might find useful.

Every Twitter user has a profile with a header. The header includes a photo or logo, your real name, your Twitter name, a short bio (a max of 160 characters), your geographic location, and your website URL.

You can also upload a custom background image (1252 pixels wide by 626 pixels high). Here’s what my old header looked like. You’ll notice it has a serious design flaw: it’s very difficult to read.

Old Twitter profile header for Mark Armstrong Illustration, featuring beer glass Olympic rings on bar tribute to 2012 Olympics Games in London

I just read a post about writing an effective Twitter bio. Here are a few excerpts:

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Your bio is searchable within the Twittersphere, meaning you need to think carefully about keywords. It will show up in search engine results for your name, so it has to represent the true you. It’s also how you choose to present yourself to Twitter’s 230 million users, so it’s worth giving it some serious thought.


Your Twitter bio should position you as an expert in your field who serves a specific audience… The objective is to position your personal brand so you’re using the right keywords and clearly showing what your focus is so people read it and know exactly what you do and whom you serve.


Carefully consider what topics you’d like to be discoverable under, as you never know who might be searching for just those subjects… you’re telling the world why they should follow you. Why you’re important.

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My original Twitter bio talked about me, rather than what I could do for others. It was 124 characters. It wasn’t particularly inspiring:


Photoshop expert; over 20 yrs. experience; Specialty: Humor. Nothing succeeds like illustration. Humor multiplies its power.


I rewrote it focusing on keywords, and what I do to help people communicate and build goodwill. The new version is exactly 160 characters:


Photoshop Expert; Humor, Illustration & Visual Content That Gets Noticed, Builds Brands, Communicates, Sends The Right Message, & Captures Short Attention Spans


Here’s what it looks like on Twitter’s default background. A lot easier to read, but that’s a pretty dull backdrop for an artist, despite my pretty face… : )

Twitter profile header for Mark Armstrong Illustration showing blank default grayish background

I was already thinking ahead to a new image when I wrote the bit about illustration capturing short attention spans. Illustration– especially one with just the right amount
of humor– gets your attention.

People click past a solid block of text. They also click past clip art or stock photos, because they know instinctively that they’re looking at filler. But they’ll stop for an amusing custom illustration– and there’s a good chance they’ll stay long enough to read some of the text that goes with it.

I’m working on a slideshow called 13 Reasons To Hire An Illustrator. One of the reasons is this special ability of illustration to grab attention. Here’s that particular slide. 

illustration of three little people with stopwatch heads, part of 13 Reasons To Hire An Illustrator slideshow, making point that attention spans are short and illustrations grab and retain a person's attention

I decided to use my little stopwatch men to make a new Twitter header image (I cloned the middle guy). The key to making it readable was to add some dark blue gradated color (Twitter header text is only available in “white”).

Here’s my new Twitter header:

New Twitter profile header for Mark Armstrong Illustration featuring short attention span stopwatch heads

If you’d like to follow me on Twitter, just click the Follow @mrstrongarm button in either the sidebar or at the end of this post.


My Twitter account is tied to my Facebook page. You’ll know when I post new work or work in progress to Facebook, because there’s always a corresponding tweet.


If you’re a Facebook person, you can get Mark Armstrong Illustration updates by Liking my Page. Just click the Like button in the Facebook Like Box in the sidebar.

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Are you a Twitter person? If so, what do you tweet about?

How’s your attention span? Did this post hold your attention??

Hope you’ll leave a comment.

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