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Tech Bytes

By Mitchell Walbridge

Fri, Oct 18th, 2013
Posted in All Columnists

Brace yourselves avid Twitter fans, this form social media is going through a sort of a rough patch. What all free social media sites depend upon for sustainability would be revenues from advertising. So, what happens when your advertising revenues don’t meet the needs for continued operation? Well, either consider future existance to be threatened, or prepare to pay to belong to the site.

What kind of challenges is Twitter facing? An Investopedia piece reports that Twitter has roughly 218 million monthly active users. Because of a lack of revenue, calculated losses for Twitter average about $0.35 per person. See the problem?

Advertisers have expressed that they are hesitant to do business with Twitter because of the site’s ‘reach’ numbers – or the amount of people who use and view the site and applications – has been staggered. In fact, Facebook has nearly five times the reach that Twitter does.

Twitter has very unique methods of advertising, mainly by supplying some users (celebrities, etc) with having the ability to be listed as ‘sponsored.’ There also may be some advertisers listed under the #discovery tab of the site. But even with these two options, the resources for advertising windows are limited.

Another aspect that comes into play is the competition of today’s social media industry. It seems that everyday new ideas are popping up, and there’s no guarantee that one site will last a couple of months or even a matter of weeks. A site or application that is popular one day may just be a temporary fad, or it can be sustained like Facebook has for a duration for the last couple of years.

Whether or not sites like Twitter (and I’m not trying to pick on this site alone) will survive depends on the ability to adapt in the market—which is totally possible. In fact, it was the creative minds that got 218 million users to their site in the first place, right?

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