What Does Twitter’s IPO Mean For Marketers?

What Does Twitter's IPO Mean For Marketers?As the buzz around the Twitter IPO begins to subside, forward-thinking marketers continue to ask the question, “How will the IPO impact my marketing efforts on the platform?”

One thing we know for sure is that once Twitter goes public there will be much more pressure from stockholders to generate revenue. This is great news for businesses and marketers as we should expect to see more products from Twitter that will allow us to connect, influence, and engage our audiences on the platform (and beyond).

To say exactly what these new offerings will be at this point would be pure speculation. However, taking into account Twitter’s run-up to the IPO announcement, its position within the social web, and the impact that an IPO has on any company (just take a look at Facebook and LinkedIn’s IPOs), we can begin to make educated guesses about how the IPO will affect businesses and how marketers can begin preparing now.

Twitter Goes Mainstream

As Twitter goes public expect to see initiatives to bring a wider audience base to the platform. Although it boasts over 200 million members and has impacted some of the most important events of the past seven years, most people still don’t consider Twitter mainstream. This is about to change.

This change will be impacted by several different factors. For starters, as the IPO draws closer and closer, expect to see more curious people joining the network to see what all the hype is about. Twitter will put a specific focus on making sure these people stick around. We’re already starting to see some of these efforts as AllThingsD recently reported about Twitter’s upcoming redesign of the mobile app to specifically appeal to a more mainstream, less techie, audience.  As only the third major interface change in the platform’s seven year history, investors who want to see a larger demographic attracted to the site will welcome these efforts.

And then there’s the natural outgrowth of Twitter advertisers looking to bring more of their offline consumers onto the platform. As Twitter continues to offer more ways for advertisers to reach audiences, expect to see these advertisers integrating Twitter more into our daily lives. One has to look no further than the TV networks to get an example of this. We’ve all seen the #hashtags prominently displayed on the TV throughout the entire duration of a show. Twitter recognizes the potential audience, engagement and most importantly ad revenue these networks can bring to the platform and is taking concrete steps to cater to them. Earlier this year Twitter made its biggest acquisition to date by acquiring Bluefin Labs, which monitors online chatter about TV shows and also announced a partnership with Nielsen to provide a “Nielsen Twitter TV rating” for broadcasters and advertisers. Most recently, they’ve announced a partnership with CBS to sell sponsored video-based tweets for 42 of CBS’s shows and digital properties.

So with this audience growth comes new opportunities. Marketers would be wise to begin scaling now so that they are prepared as this influx of new users join the platform. We all know how fast Twitter already moves and the challenges of staying relevant on such a rapid-fire platform. For the unprepared, these challenges will only increase, but savvy marketers will find unprecedented opportunities to connect with this audience just as they are joining the platform.

Think Mobile

I don’t think it is an overstatement to say that Twitter’s success will depend on how will it performs on the mobile front. Twitter clearly recognizes the importance of mobile, which is fitting considering the real-time nature of mobile and the real-time nature of Twitter.