We all love Twitter and it’s indefinite abilities to connect, share, broadcast and listen. It’s an huge fire hose of information that can be incredible powerful. At times overwhelming perhaps but always entertaining.
Now Twitter’s power as a business lies in being able to creep into the turn, previously held strongly by Google and recently Facebook. The business is about presenting information, being on the forefront of people’s minds when connecting to the web and monetizing against this. All companies, Facebook, Google and Twitter offer the core of their business for free to consumers in exchange for advertising.
Google created a hugely profitable business with fully owning the display ad market on search. Facebook found a way to develop the idea of the display ads further by customizing the ad placement, moving away from search and add it alongside people’s timelines.
Twitter developed a terrific tool, but hasn’t really broken into the monetizing game. It will come they say. And some modest revenue is streaming into their coffers, but nothing that would make the VC sharks happy.
So, here is my suggestion. Of course, what do I know, right? But, think of Twitter search. Simply one of the most powerful tools around, but it’s biggest limitation is that Twitter can’t and never did handle the load of tweets well enough. If you search today you find what’s current, what happend just now, but what you don’t find is what happened a bit ago. It’s Google Search in reverse. Google can’t index fast enough and what you post today will not show up in the search engines for a while. Twitter’s search is brilliant and can find tweets from basically a few seconds ago. But Twitter’s search cuts the past out. That’s where Google wins. Twitter still has all those old tweets. All my 23,437 tweets. They still sit on their servers somewhere. But Twitter can’t make those available otherwise their servers crash. Or so I assume. But those tweets would be incredible fascinating material. And I believe it would be a tool that many people and businesses would use. Hey, considering that many tweets contain links, one could almost exchange their default search engine with the Twitter one. So, let’s sell ads against those search results, just like Google’s ads. On the side, text and display. Really simple?
Would it be possible. I’m sure. Would the added cost for the making the search archive fully available be paid for by the increased revenue of the ads on the side? Perhaps.
So, without knowing anything about anything. Here are my two cents on how Twitter could start making money. Oh, and if the monetizing doesn’t work, I still would like my archive searchable. That still would be awesome.