Twitter plans to share ad revenue with video creators who upload their content to the microblogging platform.
Through its Amplify Publisher Program, San Francisco-base Twitter will give US video creators multiple new ways to monetize content. According to a blog post by Guy Snir, director of product management at Twitter, the expanded revenue program enables approved creators to give Twitter the right to post ads alongside the videos they upload.
They monetize their videos just by “checking a box” before to Tweeting. "Pre-roll ads will then run against the content and a portion of the ad revenue is then shared back with creator," Snir wrote.
Twitter Beats YouTube
While Twitter is unlikely to steal YouTube's thunder, its new deal is interesting enough to attract interest from organizations looking to get their message out. Twitter did not release specifics about the revenue split. But in a story this morning, Recode reported Twitter will give 70 percent to the content creator — beating the 55/45 split YouTube offers.
Twitter is also providing its users with access to the Niche creator-first platform, which connects influencers on Vine and other platforms with brands.
This will enable video makers to work with brands on a campaign-by-campaign basis and access some 35,000 creators worldwide. It will also give them access to analytics about videos on all major social networks.
Twitter's Strategic Shift
By expanding its video program, Twitter is making another attempt to address stagnating user growth, disappointing stock performance and a steady stream of executive departures.
Twitter has been desperate for new revenue streams, with video high on its list of must have features. It upgraded Twitter video capabilities in June to make it easier to upload and tweet videos, and also added support for longer videos – increasing duration from 30 seconds to 140 seconds.
Over the past few months it has streamed live video from both the US Republican and Democratic national conventions. More recently, it won the right to stream Thursday NFL games.
It also released Twitter Engage, a companion app for Twitter that provides insights into performance and audience by surfacing key Twitter stats (Likes, Retweets, @mentions and video views) and audience demographics.
Making Twitter Pay
To accompany this week’s ad revenue announcement, Twitter also introduced a number of content upgrades to make Tweets more interesting. They include:
- A new unified media library (videos, GIFs, and images)
- New Tweet scheduling and planning capabilities
- Team management and multi-account support
- Improvements in stability and upload performance
With video increasingly important as an advertising tool on the web, Twitter risked getting sidelined in this increasingly important enterprise market.