Twitter Is Gathering User Feedback About a Possible Subscription Model

Perhaps a souped up TweetDeck?

Twitter's revenue from mobile devices makes up around 89% of total revenue.
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Twitter is considering building a subscription-based product for some users, a move that could potentially give the platform more revenue while adding more tools for its stagnant user base.

Today, Twitter confirmed it’s conducting a survey to see if users are interested in a “new, more enhanced version of TweetDeck”—Twitter’s dashboard for posting and monitoring the social media platform.

“We regularly conduct user research to gather feedback about people’s Twitter experience and to better inform our product investment decisions, and we’re exploring several ways to make TweetDeck even more valuable for professionals,” a Twitter spokesperson wrote in a statement emailed to Adweek.

The idea is still in the exploratory phase, but updates could include enhanced tools for managing and creating custom audience lists—possibly based on interests, customers or regions—along with new ways to access TweetDeck on mobile and desktop devices. It could also allow for bookmarking, priority customer support and more details about a user’s activity.

The survey was first noticed on Thursday, when one user tweeted screenshots of the survey and a potential updated version of TweetDeck.

The company, which turned 11 years old this week, has over the past year struggled to grow its user and revenue bases fast enough to keep investors happy in a world where other platforms such as Facebook and Snapchat aren’t slowing down. However, the company that originated as a microblogging platform has been rapidly evolving into a place also known for live video programming.

According to its most recent quarterly earnings released last month, total revenue in the fourth quarter increased just 1 percent to what it reported in four quarter 2015. The monthly active user base also grew, jumping by 2 million during the final three months of 2016—a 4 percent increase over the same period a year earlier—to a current total of 319 million. Total daily active users also grew, jumping 11 percent over fourth quarter 2015.

At the very end of December, Twitter CEO and co-founder Jack Dorsey tweeted his followers to ask what they want him to add. Some users asked for the ability to edit and bookmark tweets, while others said they wanted more relevant ads or ways to discover content.

Details of a paid model haven’t been disclosed, but “power users” such as journalists, marketers and celebrities have told Twitter in past surveys that they would be willing to pay for more options within TweetDeck.