Twitter’s journey to profitability has led it to a familiar place for smartphone users — full-screen video ads in its mobile app. A tweet by Samya Ayish out of the #Twitter4News event in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, revealed the company’s plans to open up its Moments feed to advertisers.
This news comes just days after Twitter unveiled an initiative to integrate video from a wealth of providers, like Bloomberg, BuzzFeed, Major League Baseball, and Live Nation, as it expands into live and original programming. Moments ads will take the form of short, vertical videos roughly 10 seconds in length, like the interstitials that play in Snapchat and Instagram Stories, according to Mashable.
If you’re not familiar with Moments, it’s Twitter’s collection of curated tweets based on trending topics. Users can create their own custom Moments feeds as well, outfitting them with any tweets they like.
If Twitter can make a dent with its exclusive video offerings, getting eyeballs on these ads shouldn’t be much of a problem. Problem is, that looks to be a pretty big “if.”
For comparison’s sake, Snapchat’s efforts to pull its 161 million daily active users into branded content have fallen somewhat flat. A survey conducted by Fluent in February found that 61 percent of roughly 3,300 American adults reported they did not subscribe to a news organization on the platform.
It could be argued, conversely, that Snapchat’s strength is in exclusive content shared among friends and Twitter has done a much better job of capitalizing on the news. However, the latter has had a tough time expanding its user base, which sat at just shy of 330 million back in February.
Twitter is also arriving somewhat late to the party. Recently, rival Facebook has made a major push toward monetizing video, implementing more mid-roll ad breaks in tandem with a greater investment in original programming and video-sharing features.
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