Advice from a Social Media Specialist: How to Navigate Twitter’s Evolving Landscape

Advice from a Social Media Specialist: How to Navigate Twitter’s Evolving Landscape

By Samantha Kretmar, Social Media Supervisor

"If your brand can play safely in the sandbox of contemporary and pop culture, then a smart strategy on the platform could serve you well."

Amid the flurry of headlines that have surrounded Elon Musk’s $44 billion acquisition of Twitter, the platform continues to evolve and present advertisers with pressing questions. In the days since, Twitter has worked to assure advertisers and users alike that the platform will remain a safe place.

The policies and practices of the Twitter platform continue evolving as the new leadership clarifies its stance on content creation and moderation and user participation and verification. Musk has released a new deck targeted at advertisers, whose dollars drive 90% of the platform’s revenue, insisting that the platform’s usage has remained consistent and perhaps grown. Musk also hosted a town hall, which left many questioning how the platform would remain committed to making a safe space for advertising. 

Plus, the mass exodus of employees from Twitter’s workforce, including those in the Safety and Integrity space, have raised additional concerns about enforcement of existing policies, especially considering the recent incidents with fake accounts trolling top Fortune 100 brands and companies.

Twitter’s hold on the Zeitgeist and how it affects advertisers

From the user perspective, this paints a complicated picture. Since its inception, Twitter has existed as a social network defined by global scale and the free flow of information between nodes in a flat, non-hierarchical way. These nodes, or users, looked to the Twitter platform for the real-time exchange of information related to news, politics, and cultural happenings. Users also enjoyed a degree of anonymity, as creating a profile didn’t require personally identifiable information.

However, with the back-and-forth and eventual dissolution of the new Twitter Blue verification system, this same anonymity has now created a precarious environment where many users feel the quality of content has decreased and spam has increased.

Interestingly, noteworthy political and cultural figures have yet to depart the platform, creating an environment that may offer entertainment for users but not necessarily a brand-safe space for advertisers. Additionally, Musk has suggested that he will eventually seek the support of an outside individual to lead the company.

How to navigate the continually evolving Twitter landscape

While things at Twitter remain ever-changing, the picture remains complex from the advertisers’ side of the equation, and there are legitimate reasons for concern. First, Twitter has always struggled to offer a quality ad platform that competes with the sophisticated targeting and tracking available across other networks. And now, as users continue to test the limits of the new Twitter platform it has created an environment where most brands no longer feel safe. Unless Twitter implements changes to the policies regarding user verification and content moderation and fills the staffing needs to effectively enforce such policies, advertisers are unlikely to return.

To combat this trend, the platform has rolled out a new “value add” package, offering incentives to advertisers spending $200-500k, with some incentives as high as 100%.

This type of offer represents somewhat of a mythical unicorn in the ad space and speaks to the lengths Twitter has decided to go to lure advertisers back to the platform, especially as ad spend falls to record lows during the usually historic World Cup peak.

And, without a separation of Musk and the Twitter platform itself, brands also face a complicated question in what their advertising dollars are supporting. The answer: a one-size-fits-all solution to pausing all ads on Twitter doesn’t represent the best approach. Brands do share similarities, but each has its own unique goals and strategies to achieve them, and assessing the goals of advertising on Twitter through that lens presents the best opportunity at this moment. If your brand can play safely in the sandbox of contemporary and pop culture, then a smart strategy on the platform could serve you well. 

If you’re looking for a more in-depth analysis for your brand, drop us a line and our team of Social Media Experts will customize a strategy that meets your needs.
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