I’ll start by saying I love twitter, but there’s some elephants in the room and they have to be slain for twitter to come out winning. I don’t think twitter can win by trying to build out new features, but by doubling down on the things that worked in the past.
The people at twitter are exceptionally intelligent, and that might be the problem, they may be too intelligent to talk to users in a way that foregoes Hawthorne Effect.
- Kill the Bots- I’ve talked to about 20 advertising firms. Most of them hate running ads on twitter. The bot traffic is known to be high. The impressions, worthless. Twitter could easily kill the bots, but they worry more about their stock price than the elephant in the room. There’s a cottage industry of buying likes/followers etc… This is one of the biggest issues. On Twitdom.com there’s over 2000 twitter apps. I wonder what percentage of them follow the spirit of Twitter’s terms of service? (Many of them do not.)
- Clamp Down on API – Clamp down on programmatic tweets. BufferApp is reasonable, but many others are not.
- If you don’t tweet, don’t join twitter. – The reason facebook is a great product lays in the fact that the product is dog-fooded by all its employees so aggressively. Twitter should be hiring and selecting people who regularly use twitter. I talked to two of your sales people in Vegas to talk about buying $1K worth of programmatic tweets each month at the Money 2020 conference. Both of them were lackluster and almost incapable of closing. Also, their twitter accounts were weak at best.
- Feedback Loop – I’ve been using twitter for several years now, had several viral tweets, and I’ve never been reached out to for feedback. They have no pervasive feedback loop especially given that most people there don’t use it. I still can’t see my tweet analytics on mobile.
- Fix Your Churn – The sign up and churn rate for twitter users is high. I’ve churned twitter accounts as part of an experiment. There’s no outreach from the company to find out why. The accounts looked legitimate and all had niche content cases to them.
- Cut Your Costs – Your open office is a cost center in the middle of one of the most expensive parts of SOMA. You paid your CFO, Anthony Noto- $76M. That’s approximately 10% of your yearly revenue in 2016. Anthony is a glorified accountant who has never worked in tech and is not worth 10% of your yearly revenue. SoMa is known for an industrial modern look, and a one-bedroom apartment there costs an average of $3,700.