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Twitter Tests New ‘Super Follow’ and Tipping Buttons for Profiles

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At its recent Analyst Day preview of upcoming tools and features, Twitter showcased its initial plans for new ‘Super Follow’ and tipping options, which will provide tools for Twitter users to directly monetize their presence by offering locked, exclusive content to paying members.

And it seems that Twitter’s now closing in on the next stage of the project, with reverse engineering superstar Jane Manchun Wong uncovering these new profile layouts, incorporating both new options, within the back-end code of the app.

Twitter super follow mock-ups

As you can see here, with these new formats, Twitter users may end up having the option to add:

  • A ‘Tipping’ button to accept fan/follower donations direct on their profile
  • An additional ‘Super Follow’ option alongside the ‘Follow’ prompt (the “+” icon in the first image)
  • Or, a new ‘Super Follow’ button featured prominently, which would replace the ‘Follow’ button for those already following (people would be able to unfollow by tapping on the profile/tick icon alongside the ‘Super Follow’ button)

Twitter’s still working through the details, with several variations in testing, but it does look like, soon, users will have a few new optional buttons to add to their profiles, if they want to try and monetize their Twitter following.

As noted, Twitter first previewed its coming ‘Super Follow’ option at its Analyst Day in February, in which it also outlined a range of ways in which Twitter users would be able to incentivize paying subscribers with various add-on options.

Twitter Super Follow options

The idea is that by providing ways for users to monetize their Twitter audience, that could help Twitter to both keep its top users tweeting more often, while also incentivizing them to build more reliance on the app. That would ideally help Twitter boost overall time spent within its app by keeping its most engaging voices more active, while new eCommerce and newsletter tools, among other functions, would also help to expand Twitter usage, and broaden its functionality.

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That also ties into Twitter’s larger plans for business interactions, which advanced a little further this week with the initial live test of business profiles in the app.

Twitter business profile options

As you can see here, aside from business info panels, which will provide contact details and directions for physical stores, business profiles will also likely have product listing options, image galleries, and more. 

Combine these tools with audio rooms, communities for enclosed discussion, and new audience restrictions on tweets, and you can see how Twitter is building towards the next stage of more enclosed, exclusive content tools, which will facilitate its gated subscriptions, and provide a whole new range of options for those who want to base their community-building, and community monetization process, within the app.

Effective audience monetization has become a bigger focus for all platforms of late. With every app competing for attention, and a finite supply of actual talent that people will pay to tune into, the race is now on to provide the best home for creators, where they can make actual money from their online efforts.

Indeed, Snapchat this week reported that it’s seeing good results from its ‘Spotlight’ TikTok-clone, which is likely due to Snapchat offering up big cash incentives for the best Spotlight clips, in a bid to steal creators away from TikTok – or at the least, keep its own top creators from switching over to TikTok instead. TikTok, meanwhile, has its own ‘Creator Fund’ to incentivize its rising voices, while Instagram and YouTube provide valuable incentives through their established monetization programs, based on their expansive ad networks. 

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Even so, Instagram’s parent company Facebook is also looking into paid newsletter subscriptions and an expansion of its Facebook Stars donation process into more platform elements, while it’s also adding ads in Instagram Reels – its own TikTok clone – and Stories sticker ads to further its creator monetization options. LinkedIn is also investigating incentive programs for its top voices.  

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Keeping your most popular creators active is key to maintaining audience, and building a sustainable content ecosystem, and now, the competition is truly heating up as each platform pushes to provide more tools to help their best users make real money from simply being active and present.

That’s good news for creators, but it could end up being problematic for the platforms – especially if the bigger players decide to up the ante, and provide financial incentives beyond what the smaller players can offer.

For example, Snapchat, as noted, is currently paying out $1 million per day for the best Spotlight content, a process which, at least for now, appears to be somewhat sustainable, as it continues to boost usage, and thus, advertiser growth. But what if Facebook offered $2 million for Stories content, or for the top Reels instead? What if it offered $5 million?

You can see how this type of escalation would work to the benefit of the larger, more well-resourced players, which could theoretically blow opponents out of the water with more lucrative offers in this respect.

At the moment, the biggest platforms are focusing on refining their existing ad ecosystems instead, which is a more sustainble, long-term path. 

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But if programs like Spotlight continue to work out, and the race comes down to incentives, that won’t work in favor of the smaller apps.  

This is the landscape that Twitter is now wading into with its creator tools, and while it’s looking to build an array of options to cumulatively add to its paying subscription models, it will also need to weigh the benefits of each process as it seeks to establish the best way forward, and the best offerings for its platform stars.

It’s an interesting time, which will see a range of new options rolled out, and a flood of successes and failures, both among platforms and creators, as they evolve.

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We’ll keep you updated on Twitter’s evolving ‘Super Follow’ plans. 

Socialmediatoday.com

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Jack Dorsey Exits Twitter Board, Clearing the Way for the Elon Musk Era at the App

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Elon Musk Launches Hostile Takeover Bid for Twitter

While there’s no new news on the Elon Musk takeover saga, we do have another reminder that Twitter’s leadership team is never going to be the same, regardless of what comes next, with co-founder and former CEO Jack Dorsey today leaving the Twitter board, effective immediately.

Dorsey’s full exit removes another big chunk of experience from the company – over the past two weeks, Twitter has lost:

  • Consumer product leader Kayvon Beykpour, who’d worked at Twitter for four years
  • Head of revenue product Bruce Falck (5 years)
  • Ilya Brown, a VP of product management (6 years)
  • Katrina Lane, VP of Twitter Service (1 year)
  • Max Schmeiser, head of data science (2 years)

That said, Dorsey’s move, isn’t a surprise.

Back in November, when Dorsey announced that he was standing down as Twitter CEO, he also noted that he would stay on Twitter’s board till around ‘May-ish’ to help incoming CEO Parag Agrawal and incoming Twitter Board chair Bret Taylor with their respective transitions.

Of course, back then, Dorsey couldn’t have predicted the chaos on the horizon, but despite the distractions of an imminent takeover, Dorsey has decided to stick with his original plan, and step away from the platform that he helped build.

That clears the path for a new era under Elon Musk, who has vowed to make significant changes to the way that Twitter operates – though of late, Musk seems to be more distracted by stats on population decline and political conspiracies than he does in completing the Twitter deal.

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On May 13th, Musk said that his Twitter takeover offer was effectively ‘on hold’ pending more data from Twitter on its fake profile count, which it pegs at 5% of active users. Many users have since shared partial evidence that, in their opinion, proves that this number is not correct, while Twitter itself has maintained that there’s no such thing as ‘on hold’ in the takeover process, and that it’s preparing for the deal to close sometime soon.

Musk says that he won’t pay full price for something that’s not what he believed he was purchasing.

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But then again, Musk also waived doing detailed due diligence on Twitter’s business, in order to reach an agreement faster, which means that he may be tied to the purchase anyway, regardless of what Twitter or anyone else may find here.

For his part, Dorsey has been a strong advocate for Musk, and his interest in Twitter, and has noted several times that he believes Musk is the best option to ‘save’ the company.

Now Dorsey is getting out of the way to let that happen, which will mean that none of Twitter’s four founders remain in any position to advise or guide the platform in any direct capacity from now on.

That could be a good thing. Twitter, of course, is a far cry from what it was in the beginning, and maybe now it needs to detach from its founding concepts to reach its next stage.

But again, that’s a lot of experience heading out the door, with current CEO Agrawal also on the chopping block, according to Musk’s statements.

How that impacts Twitter’s future direction is hard to say. Again, Musk has already flagged significant changes, but without experienced voices advising him on what’s happened in the past, he could be doomed to repeat previous mistakes, impeding the company’s progress even more.

Or maybe it makes things easier, without the constraints of past limitations holding things up. I would lean towards the former, but clearly, Musk has his own ideas about how he’s going to transform the app, once he does, eventually, take control.

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Which seems like more of a ‘when’ than ‘if’, but maybe Musk has some other trick up his sleeve to either reduce his offer price or get out of the Twitter deal entirely.

Either way, massive changes are coming to the app, which could alter the way that it’s used entirely.

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