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Twitter reduces ads for subscribers by 50% – or does it?

Twitter Communities

Twitter reduces ads for subscribers by 50% – or does it?

Twitter has delivered on its CEO Elon Musk’s promise for Twitter Blue users to only see half the ads non-paying users see in the app – but it’s not quite all it seems.

Musk made the claim last November, when he provided his plan for the Twitter Blue offering, in which users subscribe to receive access to exclusive features and benefits. On revealing that subscribers would see a 50% reduction in in-app ads, many people suggested that this move could prove problematic for the platform, as the revenue it generates from advertising outweighs its Twitter Blue revenue.

It seems that this thought may have finally occurred to Twitter, too. The new benefit of seeing reduced ads has now been released for subscribers, but with a clever workaround that doesn’t exactly mean users will see a solid 50% fewer ads.

Twitter has explained that subscribers will see around half the ads in their Following and For You timelines, the two main timelines of the app, but that this reduction won’t be applied to profiles, promoted accounts, trends or events, or tweet reply threads.

This means, depending on how a user uses the app, and which parts of it they spend the most time on, they may not really see 50% fewer ads at all.

Twitter may well be testing out the reduction of ads in the two main timelines initially, and later decide to introduce it across the board for Blue subscribers, but this could be highly problematic for the platform. According to stats from Platformer from December 2022, Twitter’s advertising revenue equates to around $12 per user in the US. With 50% fewer ads, this takes the revenue impact of Twitter Blue users compared to non-paying users from $8 to just $2.

In some regions, Twitter’s ad revenue per user is less than in the US, so it may well be that the revenue from Twitter Blue it could generate in these areas does indeed outweigh any potential advertising revenue, but only time will tell as to whether this move pays off for the platform.

In the meantime, if you’d like to learn how to use social media platforms like Twitter to elevate your business, consider signing up for our next Social Media & Content Masterclass today.

Emily Jones

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