Twitter Marketing in 2020: These 4 Changes Will Have a Huge Impact on the Social Platform This Year
The beginning of a new year is always an exciting time to be a marketer. Businesses are putting their resolutions into practice. Platforms are hinting at what’s to come. And everyone is doing their best fortune teller impression to predict what the future will behold.
Luckily, we don’t need a crystal ball to predict what’s next for Twitter in 2020.
The platform has been transparent about its direction, recently rolling out major changes and announcing exciting new features coming to the platform in the future. With this information, we can take a well-informed guess at how Twitter will evolve in the coming year.
For information that will guide your Twitter strategy in 2020, keep an eye on these 4 big changes:
1. Changing the Way Users are Counted
This isn’t a new change per se, but it is one that will continue to impact the way we interact with Twitter in the new year. At the of 2018, Twitter changed the way it categorizes active users. While other platforms, namely Facebook and Instagram, count monthly/daily active users, Twitter switched over to “monetizable daily users” (mDAU) which is actually a much more relevant metric for businesses and marketers.
Twitter defines “mDAU” as “Monetizable DAU are Twitter users who log in and access Twitter on any given day through twitter.com or our Twitter applications that are able to show ads.”
This is a much more valuable metric than standard mau numbers, and if we dig deeper, we can see that while mau have declined on Twitter mDAU metrics have been steadily increasing (up 17% year-over-year in Q3 ’19). Although the decision to start categorizing users in this way intiailly spooked shareholders (share price dropped significantly following the announcement), it’s ultimately a great thing for advertisers who use the platform. Transparency regarding how many users actually view ads is useful information—information that other social networks keep under wraps.
2. Cleaning Up the Platform
The change in user categorization produces another much more immediate change to Twitter. Right now, Twitter is working to clean up its platform, making it both more user- and more advertiser-friendly. Bots are the scourge of social media, and by counting only monetizable users (those that can view ads), Twitter now has more leeway to delete these fake accounts without hurting their metrics.
This year, we’ll see continued efforts to clean up the platform as Twitter cracks down on bots, trolls, and inactive accounts. Initially, when Twitter announced that it would be purging old accounts, it sparked concerns from those who wanted to continue access to accounts tied to deceased loved ones. This concern has since been addressed, and Twitter is assuring users that there will be an option to “memorialize” an account and retain access to loved ones’ content.
3. Allowing Users to Follow Topics
Near the end of last year, Twitter rolled out the option for users to follow specific topics (not just user accounts).
The big impact of this change is on discoverability. Twitter already has a “Trends for You” section, but the section tends to be so full of irrelevant content that it’s often useless. Plus, new users (those without an established tweet and search history), delivering a relevant content just isn’t possible.
The first time those new users log into Twitter, they often have zero clue where to start. They may have a few people in mind who they want to follow, but they often find it difficult to connect with and discover others who share their interests. On a platform that already has a comparatively steep learning curve, that initial roadblock may be too difficult for some to overcome.
That’s why this new feature has the potential to change the game. It will, however, be important for Twitter to keep an eye on and refine it over time. If left unchecked, these popular trending topics could be overwhelmed with spam and low-value content, rendering it completely useless.
For Twitter, the focus now must be on tweaking their approach to deliver high-quality, relevant content to users who are interested in following these topics.
4. Enabling Narrowcasting
In November, Twitter’s VP of Design and Research Dantley Davis tweeted a list of changes that are in the works at Twitter HQ—one of which is the ability to limit tweets to only specific hashtag discussions, interests, and friends.
This change will allow people and brands to specific target certain followers and deliver content specifically created for those groups, basically acting as a mass direct tweet (as oxymoronic as that sounds). This could be significant for businesses that operate in several locations or are interested in tailoring their marketing strategy for multiple buyer personas because it will allow them to better tailor their marketing messages to the people who most want to hear them and avoid spamming followers’ feeds with irrelevant information.
Of course, this proposed change isn’t without controversy. Some commentators point to the opportunity for abuse through the feature, comparing it to Facebook’s private groups—many of which have become a hive of spam and fake news.
On the other hand, Facebook Groups have become invaluable places to attract and establish meaningful connections with other users—especially in a time when Facebook is making it more and more difficult to organically reach your followers.
As always, watch this space for important updates that matter to marketers, business owners, and entrepreneurs, and give us a call to see what a Wilder approach to marketing can do for your business.