Twitter mulling subscription model to raise revenues

Subscription platforms have been the rage over the last few years, with apps like Spotify, Hulu, OnlyFans, and Netflix are leading the charge. Now, it looks like social media giant Twitter is looking to get in on the fun.

Twitter is reportedly checking out other ways to boost their revenue, and incorporating a subscription model into the app might just be the key to doing so. This means that the platform won’t have to rely so much on targeted advertising to bring up their income. Currently, targetted ads are what Twitter currently counts on to increase their revenue.

Bloomberg reports that Twitter faced more pressure to grow during the last year, particularly because of the coronavirus pandemic. This is why they are considering adding a subscription model.

According to the report, Twitter would benefit from a separate revenue stream that is not as reliant on advertising. It points to the fact that the company’s userbase in the U.S., its most valuable market, has started to plateau. This means that it cannot simply rely on adding more users to increase its revenue. (Read: Twitter is relaunching its verification process next year)

Twitter has been playing around with the idea of subscription models for years, but it never really set things into motion. Perhaps the closest the platform got to establishing one was when it analyzed how it could charge users for using Tweetdeck. The company even surveyed users on what features they were willing to pay for, but the project was eventually scrapped. However, challenges brought about by the pandemic have seemingly breathed new life into Twitter’s efforts to develop a subscription model.

There are quite a few ideas being developed and tested out. One is “tipping”, which will allow users to access exclusive content for a small fee. The social media giant is also once again exploring charging users for using Tweetdeck. In addition, it is also looking at premium app features, like an “undo send” feature, as well as advanced customization options for Twitter profiles.

It’s still too early to tell exactly what Twitter will be doing, but it’s very likely that they will be making quite a few changes to the platform to boost its growth. While social media platforms are generally free of charge, Twitter has been forced to consider other ways to build funds because of how ad spending has shrunk during the pandemic. Jack Dorsey, Twitter’s CEO, announced the news during the virtual Goldman Sachs Technology and Internet Conference. Given that Twitter has a massive user base of 192 million daily active users from all walks of life, a subscription model sounds like a viable plan.

That said, despite the potential, the company admits that any moves that any sort of subscription model or premium services will still take time to affect their revenue.

Bruce Falck, the head of Twitter’s revenue products admitted as much stating: “While we’re excited about this potential, it’s important to note we are still in very early exploration and we do not expect any meaningful revenue attributable to these opportunities in 2021.”

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Misha Fabian

Athlete | Performer | Writer

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