Thursday, 27 January 2011

Twitter comes of age....?

 Twitter is unarguably one of digitals’ more complex beasts.  No other site manages to divide opinion in quite the same way.  To many of its 175 million users (and adding 370,000 per day), Twitter is the freshest, most interactive way to communicate whilst to others, it is simply a faintly egotistical platform to loudly announce which sandwich you ate for lunch...

Whichever camp you may sit in, it is now achieving what sceptics doubted may happen – it is now starting to make money.  Twitter booked around $45 million in ad revenue in 2010, (generated by Promoted Trends, Sponsored Tweets and Promoted Accounts) . This year, eMarketer expects strong growth from the small base to reach $150 million.  In 2012, this is expected to increase to $250 million.

This may sound like pocket change compared to Facebooks’ $4 billion 2011 revenue, but it does suggest that Twitter may be finding its feet.  One concern is that revenue forecasts are based on continued surges in growth, which will be near impossible to maintain.  The real question lies in how Twitter can develop creative, user friendly ways in which to engage users.  With the entire premise of Twitter being it’s usability and simplicity, it is unlikely to be able to match the (arguably) targeted nature of Facebooks ads nor the creativity of virtual community sites such as Habbo.

Twitter may be finding its feet, but it will need a combination of creativity and continued user growth in order to truly fly...

- Tom Lakin

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