Why Twitter is Finally Placing its Bets on Video Content

August  27,  2014 / By Taylor Blog

It has been a big year for Twitter. In the nine months since its IPO late last year, the microblogging platform has made a series of strategic acquisitions and product upgrades to enhance the user experience – and drive additional revenue. From the acquisition of SnappyTV to product updates that allow multimedia players within tweets, we see a common theme: Twitter is finally placing its bets on video.

Twitter ended Q2 on a high note, pulling in $277 million in advertising revenue that represented a 129% increase year-over-year.  In an effort to expand these revenue sources, Twitter introduced yet another product enhancement: video advertisements. Currently in beta, this trial service allows advertisers to promote video on a cost-per-click model. According to a blog post from the San Francisco-based company, “The overall goal is to bring more video into our users’ timelines to create a richer and more engaging Twitter.”

Initial product feedback has been positive. According to a blog post from The Wall Street Journal, Twitter video advertising has pulled in high engagement rates at a low cost per view (CPV). In some cases, an even lower CPV than on video-centric sites such as YouTube. That, combined with Twitter’s superior self-serve ad platform, presents brands with an incredible opportunity to promote relevant video content to highly targeted audiences on the platform.

Twitter’s other major announcement in August was perhaps the most anticipated for brands and the general public alike. Finally, users can import existing videos from a mobile device to Vine.  Other key enhancements, some of which are reminiscent of competitor Instagram, include:

  • Editing of imported video
  • Segment duplication
  • Segment preview/deletion
  • Slow motion
  • Audio mute

For marketers, of course, these advertising and platform updates further reposition Twitter as a marketing and engagement channel that is here to stay – not just a social amplification tool. Still, brands are encouraged to proceed with caution and avoid the urge to repurpose video content from another channel. What works on YouTube may not be relevant as an ad on Twitter. The die-hard Vine community is a passionate one, and will not hesitate to call out an imposter. For a brand to be successful in either case, it must be immersed in the microblogging culture and provide real value through exclusive and relevant content.

Photo Credit: slashgear.com

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