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How to Make an Animated Avatar on Twitter

NOTE: For awhile Twitter said they weren’t allowing this kind of avatar but just this week (July 17, 2010), I had someone tell me they were able to do it too – just make sure the file is small enough – and his worked! So try it out…

Some people love ‘em, some people hate ‘em. I loved it when I saw it, so I did it. Some people unfollow when you do it. I’m talking about animating your avatar on Twitter!

If you head over to look at my avatar here: http://www.Twitter.com/TiffanyDow you will see my animated avatar. I saw another girl whose pic was animated and DM’d her to ask how she did it and she told me, so I’ll pass it along to you:

Step 1: Create a short video clip – under 8 seconds. Mine was 3 seconds. All I’m doing is waving and mouthing “Hi!” I used my handy dandy Flip Mino. I plugged it in and imported it to Camtasia.

Step 2: Produce the video as a GIF file. I chose 64 colors. I played around with this – too many colors made the file too big. Too few and was just a bunch of dots hopping around the screen. Set it to custom size 150×112. On file size, make sure both options are checked – Disable callout fade…and use instant zoom-n-pan. Both options help reduce file size. Name it and finish it.

Step 3: Log into Twitter and go to Settings – Picture. Click browse and find the GIF file on your computer. When I tried doing it through FireFox, it kept saying Twitter is over capacity. But I then tried through AOL and it worked instantly!

Now enjoy your animated Twitter avatar. I’m animated on other people’s profiles, too – in my thumbnail. This could attract more followers who think it’s neat or repel people who hate the movement.

Tiff :)

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