Since 2012 we’ve been hearing rumors of Twitter dying; however, this time around the news seem to be unfeigned with hard statistics to show for it.
Shares of Twitter Inc. TWTR, -1.46% posted sharp losses this week in the wake of its quarterly earnings, putting the stock on course for its biggest weekly drop since early May.
Twitter reported 302 million monthly active users in the first quarter, in line with estimates and an 18% increase over last year. The company’s biggest weakness, in the eyes of investors, is that it isn’t adding new users as fast as they would like.
Twitter’s downfall is attributed to various factors from lack of users to lack of knowledge about what to tweet through its lack of ad space. Some have even gone as far as to say that Twitter is dying. While the news is not yet well substantiated, industry experts everywhere are speculating how long it will take for Twitter to take its last breath like another social media app, Secret.
One man’s pain is another man’s pleasure. How would Twitter’s competitors, the whole of social media, the innumerable apps that depend on Twitter for existence and whole countries pivot if it were to die?
What INNOVATION would we see that fills in the void?
Ever since Twitter was launched, the social media world was divided between Facebook fans and Twitter fans. The rivalry was rife and fans staunch, like fans of West’s San Francisco 49ers V/s Seattle Seahawks or Blur V/s Oasis. While Facebook fans were compared to emotional, family people who liked to stay connected with everyone from their high school, Twitter fans were compared to intellectuals who liked to hear from their role models, they wished they went to high school with. Even though Facebook is much larger in size, no social media news or article was ever written without comparing the two or mentioning both in the same breath.
With this rivalry, we can only assume that champagnes will be popped in Menlo Park around the time of Twitter’s demise while at the same time forming revised strategies to conquer the newly opened market. Here are a few things we are pondering about Facebook’s future if Twitter does collapse.
- Will the 304 million monthly active Twitter users turn to Facebook newsfeed?
- How will the stratagem and dynamics of Facebook’s offerings change?
- Will Facebook attempt to be known as the leading source of real time news and change its tune of connecting people?
- Will Facebook try to woo orphaned Twitter fans through marketing, social media or product innovation?
Though it is too early in the game to predict that Twitter is going away, we can assume Facebook has already devised a strategy to benefit from its competitor’s loss.
Believe it or not, Twitter seems to have been built around Japanese sensibilities. The Japanese version for Twitter came in just 2 years after its original release and it allowed people to input Japanese text, which has excellent character efficiency as you can say a lot more in Japanese in 140 characters than in any other language. Japanese love Twitter because it allows them to follow up on people during their boring train and bus rides. This and the fact that Twitter offers anonymity unlike Facebook which asks for real identity has endeared Twitter to paranoid Japanese who like to have a cocoon of pseudonyms.
Twitter too has done its share to endear itself to Japan. It built an emergency alert feature in Japan almost a year before doing so in the United States. When the tragic earthquake and tsunami struck Japan in 2011, the U.S. Embassy in Tokyo used Twitter to keep people connected. After opening a sales office in the U.S. and the UK, Japan was the country of choice to open a Twitter sales office.
Now imagine what would millions of Japanese people do without Twitter?
Will they shift to Line, the app from their homeland?
Or perhaps Facebook as it is turning out to be one of the most important networks for employment?
Or Mixi and Gree with the promise of their exciting games?
However we wish Twitter will wake up to this huge market and devise some clever tactics to turn the tables around.
While Japan already has on hand many alternatives to survive the rumored demise of Twitter, Buffer and Hootsuite are scheduling applications that depend mostly, if not solely on Twitter for their popularity. And we can only wonder about the future of entirely Twitter-based applications like Tweet Jukebox, FutureTweets and Tweet4me that offer twitter specific services.
Also it would mean loss of business for companies that make a living out of buying Twitter followers.
What will happen to Lady Gaga and all her followers? Will Katy Perry and Justin Bieber fans miss their meaningless tweets? Will we be laughing our a$$ off without #lmao? Will we miss our share of
Meaningless celeb tweets?
What will happen to all of the above and many more Twitter accounts like Ford Focus, Ford EU, Ford Italia, Ford Spain, Ford Mustang, Ford Service…. phew! Ford has an overwhelming slew of Twitter accounts with an average of 2.3 tweets a day per account. That is a substantial amount of hard work and faith put into a social network that is going down.
We need not be so pessimistic as to give a final verdict on Twitter’s decline. There is still time and the smart folks at Twitter is adding several new products and features regularly to keep businesses and users interested. But we here at Imaginovation love to IMAGINE and INNOVATE and so, we couldn’t help sharing our thoughts on the future of Twitter.
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