Twitter is not the hot commodity it used to be. In fact, it’s not even close.
Sure, Twitter is still used by celebrities and some companies, but the general public seems to have lost interest. Data from July 2015 showed that Twitter had gained 3 percent more users over the course of three months. In October, the number of active users only rose by 1 percent. Needless to say, things are not looking good.
From adding features to modifying icons, Twitter has tried to renovate its website to reinvigorate its current users and attract new ones, but its attempts have yet to give this social media platform the boost it so desperately needs. Therefore, the dwindling spiral of Twitter continues, even with the company’s 10th birthday in March.
It is funny. I guess I never expected Twitter to be one of the first big ones to go. I never got too into it myself, but I feel like it was not long ago that all my friends could not get enough of it. I mean, Twitter was up there with Facebook. Everyone had the Twitter app downloaded to his or her phone, and people were constantly checking it for updates. Now, however, people have seemed to turn their attention to Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, Pinterest and Snapchat (what I see as the five biggest social media platforms today), leaving Twitter behind in their tracks.
All these big social media platforms have, more or less, the same concepts: share words, photos and videos with others; follow users and like their posts; and, all in all, keep in touch. So, if they are all similar in that general sense, what is it exactly that makes one social media platform more successful than another?
If you ask me, I think the biggest factor is simplicity. A platform that is complex or difficult to maneuver is not likely to have its success written in the stars. Thanks to the Internet, today’s society demands quick and readily accessible results, and if those needs are not being met, there are, without a doubt, other alternatives. In some senses, Twitter suffers from this problem. Scrolling through the website is not always clear, making it more challenging for users to make the most of it. I find that other platforms, on the other hand, are easier to understand.
I think another issue with Twitter is that its purpose is a bit hazy. You can write or tweet a post that is up to 140 characters, share photos and follow people. But what is the point? Why tweet when you can get the same thing accomplished on Facebook, for as many or as few characters as you want? Why look at photos on Twitter when you can go to Instagram and see a whole feed of photos without having to scan through individual profiles? Moreover, why follow people on Twitter when you can find out all there is to know about a person (for social media purposes) on Facebook, or check in on someone’s most recent updates on Snapchat? Unfortunately, it does not look like Twitter has a niche that helps it stand out in the social media world.
To condense my thoughts, I would say that for a social media platform to be successful, it has to have a clear purpose or intent (except for Facebook, which does it all) and has to be more efficient than any existing competitor. Otherwise, it will be left with a situation like the one Twitter is in right now, stuck without any sight of a saving grace to revive it. Twitter, you had a good run, but your 15 minutes (or 10 years) of fame might be coming to an end.