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Twitter Opens up Super Follows to All Users on IOS

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Twitter has opened up its new ‘Super Follow’ option to all users on iOS, which will provide more monetization potential for creators, expanding the capacity for them to draw direct income from their biggest fans.

Originally opened for public applications back in June, then launched in limited beta in September, Super Follows enables Twitter users with more than 10k followers to set a monthly subscription fee (up to $9.99) to monetize additional, exclusive content for their most engaged followers in the app.

Once activated, creators are provided with a new ‘Super Followers’ audience selection option for their tweets, which limits the reach of their content to their paying subscribers only.

That provides another means to build a paying audience via your tweet content, which is part of Twitter’s broader push to provide more incentive for creators to keep tweeting more often, boosting engagement and interaction in the app.

Super Follows is one of several new creator monetization projects in the works, with Twitter also currently testing:

On profile tipping – Which is now available to all users over the age of 18 (on iOS only)
Ticketed Spaces – Now available to US-based users with more than 1,000 followers that have hosted at least 3 Spaces in the last 30 days
Spaces funding – Twitter introduced its Spark Spaces funding initiative last week, which will provide chosen participants with $2500 per month to help develop their audio social content
Revue newsletter links – Not direct monetization, as such, but Twitter also now enables Revue newsletter creators to promote their subscription-based offerings direct on their profile and in tweets

The initiatives are part of Twitter’s broader plan to boost its usage and revenue, with the company looking to double both by 2023, in response to increased pressure on Twitter’s executive team to maximize that app’s performance.

In March last year, investment management firm Elliott Management Corp. bought up a significant stake in Twitter, with a view to pushing for the replacement of Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, who they view as failing to capitalize on the potential of the app, with his attention spread too thin across Twitter and Square, where he is also CEO.  

Dorsey and his team managed to negotiate a stay of execution, on the basis that it set these ambitious growth targets, which is why Twitter’s development momentum has since shifted so significantly, and we’re seeing to many new products and projects rolled out in the app.

Though, this far, they’re not taking off. One of Twitter’s early efforts, Fleets, was cancelled after less than a year, while data has shown that its monetization options, which also include its own Twitter Blue internal subscription offering, are not seeing significant take-up among users as yet.

Last month, app analytics provider Sensor Tower reported that Twitter’s Super Follow option had only generated around $6,000 in the US, and around $600 in Canada, after its first two weeks of availability. At the minimum price point for Super Follows ($2.99), that would suggest that only 2 thousand users – or 0.005% of Twitter’s US user base – had subscribed to anyone in the app. And that’s at the most generous estimate.

And while two weeks isn’t enough data to go on, and Twitter is still working out how to implement the program effectively, the early figures are not overly inspiring, while Ticketed Spaces and tipping have also seen relatively minor response in their early respective phases.

Again, Twitter is still developing its strategies on each element. Just this week, Twitter announced that it will now highlight trending Spaces in the Explore tab, which will significantly boost exposure, and could subsequently see more broadcasters paying more attention to the option. That could make Ticketed Spaces a much bigger thing, while broader access to Super Follows can only also help Twitter optimize its approach, and boost take-up.

It’s hard to say whether any of these elements will become a thing – but one thing that it likely working against them is habitual behavior, in asking Twitter users to pay for things that they’ve traditionally been able to access for free.

Is there anybody that you’d pay to read their exclusive tweets? Outside of celebrities, there’s probably not a lot of Twitter users that could demand a fee for their exclusive thoughts, while they would also be essentially limiting their own exposure potential by sharing with smaller groups, as opposed to broadcasting to everyone in the app.

In a broader sense, Twitter still needs to translate that shift for users, and get them more accustomed to spending, which its push into eCommerce will likely help, which is also in its early stages.

But right now, it’s too early to say. Maybe, if Twitter can encourage more exclusive content and community building, and change how audiences respond to such, these new bets will work, and will become a more lucrative element for both creators and Twitter itself. But it still seems a way off.

And 2023 may come too quickly for full realization of any benefits.

Article: socialmediatoday.com

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Twitter Shares New Insights Into Holiday Shopping Trends [Infographic]

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The data shows that people are planning earlier, while fashion-related topics are high on the agenda.

Source: socialmediatoday.com

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TikTok Announces Fundraising Initiatives for Giving Tuesday, $7m in Direct Donations for Mission-Driven Organizations

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TikTok will run a series of live-streams throughout December to highlight various charitable groups and causes.

Source: socialmediatoday.com

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Instagram Launches Live Test of Longer Videos in Stories

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After it was spotted in testing last month, Instagram has now officially launched a live test of 60-second videos in Stories, which will mean that longer video clips will no longer be split into 15-second segments, and played across various Stories frames.

As noted, last month, app researcher Alessandro Paluzzi shared this message, stored in the back-end code of the app, which is now being displayed to some users in the live environment.

We asked Instagram about the update, and it provided this statement:

The ability to create longer Stories posts comes highly requested by our community. We’re excited to be testing 60-second Stories so that people can create and view Stories with fewer interruptions.” 

Instagram says that the option is currently being tested with a small group of users, with a view to providing more creative freedom, and further integrating the app’s various video options to streamline its creative tools and functions.

Which, really, is the key focus. Back in January, Instagram chief Adam Mosseri flagged a coming consolidation of the app’s video products, with a view to better facilitating creation, and scaling back the platform’s various tools. That started with the merging of its video feed posts into a single format early last month, along with the retirement of the IGTV brand.  

As Mosseri explained to Decoder:

“We’re looking about how we can – not just with IGTV, but across all of Instagram – simplify and consolidate ideas, because last year we placed a lot of new bets. I think this year we have to go back to our focus on simplicity and craft.”

The re-thinking of its approach has been largely influenced by TikTok, which has become the most popular social app among young users, overtaking Instagram as the cool place to be.

Part of TikTok’s core appeal is simplicity – on TikTok, you open to a full-screen feed of video clips and live-streams, with all of it combined into one, optimized, focused listing, tailored to each individual user.

Instagram is far more segmented, with Reels in a separate feed, and Stories in its own section. That could be restricting optimal take-up, which is why Instagram’s now looking to bring all of these elements together, which will also, eventually, enable it to showcase the best of each aspect in a single, more-engaging stream.

The expansion to 60-second video clips in Stories is another step in this gradual merging, which, at some stage, will likely see the app open to a full-screen feed of Stories, feed posts and Reels, all in one, enabling IG, like TikTok, to use the full breadth of uploaded content to maximize user engagement.

It’s still a way off that next stage, but longer videos will mean that users can now post full Reels to Stories, for example, essentially merging the two functions automatically. Then it’s just determining how it shifts from the traditional feed to a more Stories/Reels aligned one instead.

That’s a bigger step, and a more fundamental change for the app. But as part of Meta’s broader focus on winning back younger users, you can bet that it’s coming, and likely sooner, rather than later.

Which is why this new test is a significant step. It’s limited for now, but you can expect to see longer Stories videos coming to your Instagram app sometime soon.

Article: socialmediatoday.com

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