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Twitter Opens Up Super Follows to All Users on iOS

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Twitter has opened up its new ‘Super Follow’ option to all users on iOS, which will provide more monetization potential for creators, expanding the capacity for them to draw direct income from their biggest fans.

Super Follow

Originally opened for public applications back in June, then launched in limited beta in September, Super Follows enables Twitter users with more than 10k followers to set a monthly subscription fee (up to $9.99) to monetize additional, exclusive content for their most engaged followers in the app.

Once activated, creators are provided with a new ‘Super Followers’ audience selection option for their tweets, which limits the reach of their content to their paying subscribers only.

Super Follow

That provides another means to build a paying audience via your tweet content, which is part of Twitter’s broader push to provide more incentive for creators to keep tweeting more often, boosting engagement and interaction in the app.

Super Follows is one of several new creator monetization projects in the works, with Twitter also currently testing:

  • On profile tipping – Which is now available to all users over the age of 18 (on iOS only)
  • Ticketed Spaces – Now available to US-based users with more than 1,000 followers that have hosted at least 3 Spaces in the last 30 days
  • Spaces funding – Twitter introduced its Spark Spaces funding initiative last week, which will provide chosen participants with $2500 per month to help develop their audio social content
  • Revue newsletter links – Not direct monetization, as such, but Twitter also now enables Revue newsletter creators to promote their subscription-based offerings direct on their profile and in tweets

The initiatives are part of Twitter’s broader plan to boost its usage and revenue, with the company looking to double both by 2023, in response to increased pressure on Twitter’s executive team to maximize that app’s performance.

In March last year, investment management firm Elliott Management Corp. bought up a significant stake in Twitter, with a view to pushing for the replacement of Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, who they view as failing to capitalize on the potential of the app, with his attention spread too thin across Twitter and Square, where he is also CEO.  

Dorsey and his team managed to negotiate a stay of execution, on the basis that it set these ambitious growth targets, which is why Twitter’s development momentum has since shifted so significantly, and we’re seeing to many new products and projects rolled out in the app.

Though, this far, they’re not taking off. One of Twitter’s early efforts, Fleets, was cancelled after less than a year, while data has shown that its monetization options, which also include its own Twitter Blue internal subscription offering, are not seeing significant take-up among users as yet.

Last month, app analytics provider Sensor Tower reported that Twitter’s Super Follow option had only generated around $6,000 in the US, and around $600 in Canada, after its first two weeks of availability. At the minimum price point for Super Follows ($2.99), that would suggest that only 2 thousand users – or 0.005% of Twitter’s US user base – had subscribed to anyone in the app. And that’s at the most generous estimate.

And while two weeks isn’t enough data to go on, and Twitter is still working out how to implement the program effectively, the early figures are not overly inspiring, while Ticketed Spaces and tipping have also seen relatively minor response in their early respective phases.

Again, Twitter is still developing its strategies on each element. Just this week, Twitter announced that it will now highlight trending Spaces in the Explore tab, which will significantly boost exposure, and could subsequently see more broadcasters paying more attention to the option. That could make Ticketed Spaces a much bigger thing, while broader access to Super Follows can only also help Twitter optimize its approach, and boost take-up.

It’s hard to say whether any of these elements will become a thing – but one thing that it likely working against them is habitual behavior, in asking Twitter users to pay for things that they’ve traditionally been able to access for free.

Is there anybody that you’d pay to read their exclusive tweets? Outside of celebrities, there’s probably not a lot of Twitter users that could demand a fee for their exclusive thoughts, while they would also be essentially limiting their own exposure potential by sharing with smaller groups, as opposed to broadcasting to everyone in the app.

In a broader sense, Twitter still needs to translate that shift for users, and get them more accustomed to spending, which its push into eCommerce will likely help, which is also in its early stages.

But right now, it’s too early to say. Maybe, if Twitter can encourage more exclusive content and community building, and change how audiences respond to such, these new bets will work, and will become a more lucrative element for both creators and Twitter itself. But it still seems a way off.

And 2023 may come too quickly for full realization of any benefits.

Socialmediatoday.com

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Snap making changes to direct response advertising business

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Snap making changes to direct response advertising business

The company posted a net loss of $288.5 million, or 18 cents a share, including $34 million in charges from its workforce restructuring. That compared to a profit of $23 million, or one cent, a year earlier.

Snap ended the fourth quarter with 375 million daily users, a 17% increase. In the first three months of the year, the company estimates 382 million to 384 million people will use its platform daily.

Snap has become a bellwether for other digital advertising companies. Last year, it was the first to raise concerns about the slowdown in marketer spending online and to fire a significant number of employees—20% of its workforce—to cut costs in the face of falling revenue.

The company has spent the last two quarters refocusing the organization, cutting projects that don’t contribute to user and revenue growth.

In the first quarter, Snap expects the environment to “remain challenging as we expect the headwinds we have faced over the past year to persist.”

Investors will get additional information about the state of the digital ad market when Meta and Alphabet report earnings later this week.

—Bloomberg News

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Twitter Outlines New Platform Rules Which Emphasize Reduced Reach, as Opposed to Suspensions

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Twitter Outlines New Platform Rules Which Emphasize Reduced Reach, as Opposed to Suspensions

After reinstating thousands of previously suspended accounts, as part of new chief Elon Musk’s ‘amnesty’ initiative, Twitter has now outlined how it will be enforcing its rules from now on, which includes less restrictive measures for some violations.

As explained by Twitter:

“We have been proactively reinstating previously suspended accounts […] We did not reinstate accounts that engaged in illegal activity, threats of harm or violence, large-scale spam and platform manipulation, or when there was no recent appeal to have the account reinstated. Going forward, we will take less severe actions, such as limiting the reach of policy-violating Tweets or asking you to remove Tweets before you can continue using your account.”

This is in line with Musk’s previously stated ‘freedom of speech, not freedom of reach’ approach, which will see Twitter leaning more towards leaving content active in the app, but reducing its impact algorithmically, if it breaks any rules.

Which means a lot of tweets that would have previously been deemed violative will now remain in the app, and while Musk notes that no ads will be displayed against such content, that could be difficult to enforce, given the way the tweet timeline functions.

But it does align with Musk’s free speech approach, and reduces the onus on Twitter, to some degree, in moderating speech. It will still need to assess each instance, case-by-case, but users themselves will be less aware of penalties – though Musk has also flagged adding more notifications and explainers to outline any reach penalties as well.

“Account suspension will be reserved for severe or ongoing, repeat violations of our policies. Severe violations include but are not limited to: engaging in illegal content or activity, inciting or threatening violence or harm, privacy violations, platform manipulation or spam, and engaging in targeted harassment of our users.

Which still means that a lot of content that these users had been suspended for previously would still result in suspension now, and it leaves a lot up to Twitter management in allocating severity of impact in certain actions.

How do you definitively measure threats of violence or harm, for example? Former President Donald Trump was sanctioned under this policy, but many, including Musk, were critical of Twitter’s decision to do so, given that Trump is an elected representative.

In other nations, too, Twitter has been pressured to remove tweets under these policies, and it’ll be interesting to see how Twitter 2.0 handles such, given its stated more lax approach to moderation, despite its rules remaining largely the same.

Already, questions have been raised on this front – Twitter recently removed links to a BBC documentary that’s critical of the Indian Government, at the request of India’s PM. Twitter hasn’t offered any official explanation for the action, but with Musk also working with the Indian Government to secure partnerships for his other business, Tesla, questions have been raised as to how he will manage both impacts concurrently.

In essence, Twitter’s approach has changed when it chooses to do so, but the rules, as such, will effectively be governed by Musk himself. And as we’ve already seen, he will make drastic rules changes based on personal agendas and experience.

Twitter says that, starting February 1st, any previously suspended users will be able to appeal their suspension, and be evaluated under its new criteria for reinstatement.

It’s also targeting February for a launch of its new account penalties notifications.



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4 new social media features you need to know about this week

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New social media features to know this week


Social media never stands still. Every week there are new features — and it’s hard for the busy comms pro to stay up-to-date on it all.

We’ve got you covered.

Here’s what you need to know about this week.

LinkedIn

Social media sleuth Matt Navarra reported on Twitter that LinkedIn will soon make the newsletters you subscribe to through the site visible to other users.

This should aid newsletter discovery by adding in an element of social proof: if it’s good enough for this person I like and respect, it’s good enough for me. It also might be anopportunity to get your toe in the water with LinkedIn’s newsletter features.

Instagram

After admitting they went a little crazy on Reels and ignored their bread and butter of photographs, Instagram continues to refine its platform and algorithm. Although there were big changes over the last few weeks, these newer changes are subtler but still significant.

 

 

First, the animated avatars will be more prominent on profiles. Users can now choose to flip between the cartoony, waving avatar and their more traditional profile picture, rather than picking one or the other, TechCrunch reported, seemingly part of a push to incorporate metaverse-esque elements into the app.

Instagram also appears to have added an option to include a lead form on business profiles. We say “appears” because, as Social Media Today reports, the feature is not yet listed as an official feature, though it has rolled out broadly.

The feature will allow businesses to use standard forms or customize their own, including multiple choice questions or short answer.

Twitter

In the chaotic world of Twitter updates, this week is fairly staid — with a useful feature for advertisers.

The platform will roll out the ability to promote tweets among search results. As Twitter’s announcement points out, someone actively searching for a term could signal stronger intent than someone merely passively scrolling a feed.

Which of these new features are you most interested in? That LinkedIn newsletter tool could be great for spreading the word — and for discovering new reads.

Allison Carter is executive editor of PR Daily. Follow her on Twitter or LinkedIn.

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