In what is increasingly becoming an ‘Always On’ world, this week Twitter ‘Moments’ was launched in the UK, giving users the ability to find information on major news stories and events, quicker and more easily.
Users of the social media site may have noticed that where they previously found their all-important notification button, there is now a lightening bolt and the word Moments in it’s place. Naturally as the ‘Always On’ agency, we thought we’d share our thoughts on the latest development for the 15 Million active UK Tweeters.
Having launched Moments in the USA and Brazil already, the social networking site has positioned itself in direct competition with sites such as BBC News and Sky News by becoming a broadcasting channel in it’s own right. Saying that, the service has been launched with 18 production partners including Sky News, The Sun, BuzzfeedUK and Glamour Magazine who will all contribute specifically tailored content to enable Twitter users to access the most popular of stories.
Unlike many other news and content platforms, Twitter Moments is ‘picture-led’ and the people behind the platform have acknowledged the fact that Twitter currently produces what they have referred to as an ‘avalanche’ of information which can be difficult to navigate around.
Head of Twitter Moments in Europe Joanna Geary has stressed the differentiation between the traditional Twitter platform and the type of content available in Twitter Moments:
“It’s actually built around tweets but they look and feel very different to your average Twitter timeline, not least because the content is really showing up picture and video first. It's also not just about stars and celebrities. It's also about eyewitnesses, people on the street, great one-liners, the conversations people are having, the whole diversity of the story on Twitter."
Whilst Twitter may be classing the new offering as the “most important feature ever” it has also been announced that the aim in the near future is for Twitter to earn revenue from the Moments feature by offering brands the opportunity to share ‘Promoted Moments’. This promoted content is something we have seen become increasingly more common within social media sites with photo sharing sites Instagram (owned by Facebook) and Snapchat recently making the decision to offer this service to brands with the aim to bring in higher revenues.
However, we are unlikely to be seeing just any brands featuring on Twitter Moments as Digiday have reported that advertisers could be charged up to £660,000 per day for the privilege. Across the pond, brands such as Starbucks and US phone network Verizon have already started experimenting with the service, so only time will tell which UK brands will jump on the bandwagon too, but does this ulterior revenue motive make Twitter users more sceptical of the “best feature ever” and perhaps less inclined to use Twitter as a whole?
The evolution of Twitter and its potential revenue streams is something we’ve discussed in previous articles. The addition of the Moments platform certainly adds fuel to the fire that Twitter is less a ‘networking’ site and more of a platform for broadcasting information as discussed by Connect Partner, Jose Espinosa, in his earlier piece ‘Is Twitter dying?’. Further to this we have also questioned if Twitter is at risk of extinction due to an unfeasible revenue model.
This new feature on Twitter is sure to ignite some conflicting opinions and could well lead to a reduction in users due to the over-exposure of promoted content that users aren’t choosing to see, however perhaps it will finally be the revenue stream Twitter requires whilst still enhancing it’s own user experiences – only time will tell.
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