Twitter is without question the place for politicians, journalists and famous people to sound off on any and every trending topic. But is it the place for everyone else? You know—us regular people.
Some say “no.”
Despite new agreements to live stream political conventions, NFL games and NBA games Twitter has seen sluggish growth compared to rivals Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat.
The decade-old social medium showed it could be nimble with its launch of “Periscope” to compete with newcomer “Meerkat.” But social media giant Facebook played a bigger hand with its “Facebook Live” feature, which brought us Chewbacca Mom.
And even with Twitter’s announcement this week that it will finally offer verification to anyone who wants it, some say all that may be too little too late.
Richard Laermer is an author, futurist, trendspotter and the CEO of New York-based RLM Public Relations. He says Twitter’s days as a social media titan are numbered.
“Sadly, Twitter has done nothing to remain relevant– and to think it had such promise,” Laermer said.
“The reason is that no one really pays attention to tweets unless they’re told to. That is not how social media works.”
Amir Watynski, president of Watt Media Inc, a marketing company in Florida, goes a step further. He thinks that for most Americans, Twitter has already gone the way of Myspace.
“Who are Twitter’s regular users? Celebrities, news organizations, huge corporations and name brands, sure. But the average American doesn’t use it, and it hasn’t garnered the loyalty, time spent and frequent visits as Facebook has achieved,” Watynski told Eye Opener.
“When business clients ask us to manage their social media, I am at a loss at what benefit Twitter will have for them.
“Facebook is part of our lives,” Watynski continued. “The same cannot be said of Twitter.”
Garrett Bonistalli disagrees. Bonistalli is the co-founder of Localturf, a small business website builder and digital marketing services provider. He says Twitter isn’t going anywhere any time soon.
“Twitter is one of the leading social media channels for gathering news,” Bonistalli said. “Arguably, information flies from one side of the world to the other the fastest through Twitter.”
He points out Twitter’s new “moments” feature allows users to quickly view top headlines of the day in just a couple of swipes.
Bonistalli adds that he notices a symbiotic relationship between Twitter and Google.
“Twitter results will appear in Google searches for newsworthy topics. So in my mind, as long as people are searching for their news on Google, Twitter will have a place at the table.”
At the end of the day Twitter needs three things to successfully continue: growth in active users, increased ad sales and more investors getting on board.
With analysts predicting 20% growth for all of 2016 and 2017, and some questioning how long CEO Jack Dorsey can continue to run Twitter while also managing his credit card processing startup “Square,” we’ll just have to wait and see.
Meanwhile, we’ll still keep checking to see the next thing Donald Trump tweets; and then wait for Hillary Clinton’s snarky response.