August 17, 2017

Paid Premium Subscriptions Considered by Twitter

The 11 year history of Twitter is a compelling model of how a simple and free user-centric content service, supported by advertising, can grow to have tremendous reach and an huge impact on culture. Facebook is another example on a larger scale. But the key difference between the two services is ad revenue. Unlike Facebook, Twitter just hasn’t been able to attract the ad dollars.

Journalist Andrew Tavani’s scoop a few days revealed what may be Twitter’s new initiative to drive revenue not from paid ads, but from paying users:

Tavani also noted that the ‘advanced TweetDeck’ monthly subscription fee Twitter is exploring in the survey is $19.99 and would have a list of marketer-centric features.

Shortly after Tavani’s sharp-eyed reporting took over the Twitterverse, company spokeswoman Brielle Villablanca confirmed with Reuters that Twitter is conducting a survey “to assess the interest in a new, more enhanced version of Tweetdeck. We regularly conduct user research to gather feedback about people’s Twitter experience and to better inform our product investment decisions, and we’re exploring several ways to make Tweetdeck even more valuable for professionals.”

This move is very similar to LinkedIn’s paid premium memberships and could prove to be a successful revenue booster for the Twitter. But as pointed out here, it won’t cure what fundamentally ails the business of Twitter.