twitter, verification, elon musk, twitter blue, social media marketing, facebook, instagram, meta, short form video content, report, roadmap

Should marketers stay on Twitter? Elon Musk chimes in with a roadmap

You can’t say that the newly crowned CEO of Twitter hasn’t been busy. Elon Musk has been putting out fires all over his platform. Granted, while holding a lit match behind his back. But all these small fires made up of unbanning controversial figures, talk of hate speech rising, and unverified verification systems, are simply feeding the massive wildfire that is the problem of marketers running from the platform like rats off a sinking ship. But the captain of the ship, Musk, is here to tell you that the ship isn’t sinking and to prove it, he’s got a report. And, better yet, a roadmap for the platform that should bring marketers back to Twitter. Given his history of being a figurative and literal car salesman – and the issues that have come out about that – this report should be taken with a grain of salt. But let’s see what the new CEO has to say anyway. Maybe there is hope for marketing executives and affiliate marketing partners after all.

What does the report say?

The first promising point of Musk’s Twitter report says that “New user signups at an all-time high”. Specifically, it averages “2 million a day over the past seven days” as of November 16. The savvy internet sleuth might see an issue with that right away. If nothing else, Musk’s escapades on the platform are dramatic, and online everyone loves drama. Some men, just want to watch the world burn. In this graph that goes all the way back to 2014, there is an important drop in subscribers that presumably came right before Musk bought the company. We won’t know because the graph has no qualifying points beyond “July 1 2014-November 16 2022”.

Marketers, too, might want to consider the demographic of these new signups. Social Media Today points out: “Are these US users, maybe freedom of speech-ers signing up to Elon’s new, more open public square? … Could this be scammers signing up for a lot more accounts very quickly – because, in order to qualify for Twitter Blue, and get a blue checkmark, accounts will have to have been active for at least 90 days prior?”

The next chart shows “User active minutes”, also at an all-time high of 8 billion user active minutes a day over the past seven days – ending on November 15th 2020. 2020. Not 2022. Has someone forgotten to change the date or is Musk trying to get one over on us with old data?

This slip is also present on the next slide: mDAU (Global monetizable Daily Active Users) passes the quarter-billion mark. If he’s trying to convince investors and marketers that there’s money in Twitter, he should pay attention to detail.

Social Media Today gives it the benefit of the doubt, however, saying: “Basically, the data shows that Twitter is back at its previous usage levels, after losing its way for some time. Which is not surprising given Musk’s capacity to spark controversy and discussion.”

However, the most questionable slide is beyond a doubt the slide concerning hate speech. According to this slide, “Hate speech impressions are lower”, but there is a qualifier. Tweets with “1+ slur” from a curated list and a “Toxicity score” of 0.91 or higher. What makes you qualify for that? And in a world of “free speech” how much hate speech is too much free speech?

What’s on the roadmap?

So, what’s in the future for Twitter according to this roadmap? Well, Musk’s presentation leaves a lot to be desired. He’s the idea man. Details – or thinking through to a logical conclusion – isn’t his thing. His thing is ideas. And he has six, apparently in this roadmap: “advertising as entertainment”, “video”, “encrypted DMs”, “longform tweets”, “relaunch Blue verified” and “payments”.

“Payments” didn’t even have a picture as an example like the rest. Social Media Today took a stab in the dark, giving examples from other platforms like “facilitating funds transfers between accounts, enabling fee-free remittance, a key benefit in developing markets. Then, once people are already moving money in the app, you offer more ways to use it, via in-app purchases, bill payments, banking, etc.”

At least “longform Tweets” is self-explanatory, and given Musk’s love for the number 420, people have guessed that’s his target character count. So is “video”. Short-form video content is now a staple of most platforms, and Twitter was trailing behind on that even before the buyout. And encrypted DMs are becoming the standard across other platforms, like Facebook and Instagram.

Advertising as entertainment is basically interactive advertisements. “Click this ad and we’ll tell you your Game of Thrones house”, is the example he gives, which could be interesting for marketers to pursue. It might be the most convincing option on the roadmap.

And then there is the “Relaunch of Blue verified”, which changes so often that a mention of it just makes your eyes roll.

So, is that convincing to you? Has Musk successfully convinced marketers and investors, and users, that he can actually make a go of this? He’s not likely to do it without marketers, so it’s important that they are on board. Maybe there’s a little nugget of hope somewhere in there.

If you are interested in more affiliate and social media marketing insights, take a look at our blog for all the latest news and advice. Or for a more personalised approach, book a free call with a member of our team.

Or, for the very best advice from industry peers, get your free tickets to gain access to our Amplify Virtual Summit. Coming in January of this year, Amplify aims to bring you the latest affiliate, performance, and partner marketing insights from across the globe. Don’t miss it.

Related Posts

Get the latest affiliate news to your inbox

Join 1000’s of digital marketers who want to keep up to date with Affiliate Marketing trends across all verticals. Sign up to our weekly Newsletter and stay updated with all our industry news, insights and interviews.

Partner Directory