Twitter Live Streaming Could Be a Whole New Ball Game

Twitter Live Streaming Could Be a Whole New Ball Game

Author: Frank DiPietro / Source: The Motley Fool Let's face it: If you are a Twitter Inc. (NYSE:TWTR) shareholder, you are hoping for a ch

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Let’s face it: If you are a Twitter Inc. (NYSE:TWTR) shareholder, you are hoping for a change in the company’s performance that may cause market perception to turn from negative to positive. The latest quarterly earnings report coupled with announcements on May 1 at the Interactive Advertising Bureau’s 2017 Digital Content NewFronts may be the magic potion the market is looking for.

TWTR Chart

When Twitter reported quarterly earnings, it announced that it had increased its live video broadcasts to 800 hours in Q1 of this year. The company also noted that 45 million unique viewers, an increase of 31% from the previous quarter, watched the content. Twitter’s strategy is moving into more use of live video broadcasts giving it multiple ways to win.

The company can sell advertising that will play like a traditional TV ad inside an event broadcast and target specific ads for specific viewers. This can attract ad partners who will begin working with Twitter through conventional ads and migrate over to Twitter’s other ad products such as promoted tweets or engage users with pre-roll ads before highlight shows. Additionally the broadcasts may entice more users to its platform. More users will hopefully attract more advertisers, leading to more revenue.

Here is how management described the unique viewers in its Q1 shareholder letter:

We continue to provide significant value to our live premium content partners, helping them extend their reach globally with approximately 60% of unique viewers outside the US, and reach a younger audience with approximately 55% of unique viewers under the age of 25.

The 60% of unique viewers outside the US and 55% of unique viewers under the age of 25 represent percentages for our logged in audience only.

In its most recent quarter Twitter had a total of 328 million monthly active users. International users numbered 259 million, or 79% of the total.

Below is a chart showing the category of live programming that Twitter streamed in Q1 that is capturing viewers’ attention.

Metric Sports News & Politics Entertainment
Live programming hours in Q1 408 hours 280 hours 112 hours
Percent of total live programming in Q1 51% 35% 14%

Twitter management then proceeded to tell shareholders to stay tuned as it would be presenting its full slate of video plans to potential advertisers at the Interactive Advertising Bureau’s 2017 Digital Content NewFronts on May 1st. This would be the company’s first appearance at the event which is held annually to show advertisers the upcoming slate of content from digital companies like Twitter.

If as an investor, you were concerned that Twitter didn’t have anything new to offer advertisers you may want to reconsider. The company announced deals with Bloomberg News to have a 24/7 live streaming news network launching this fall, Live Nation Entertainment, Inc for concert events, the WNBA for women’s basketball, along with nine other agreements.

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