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India represents a massive opportunity for Twitter: Matt Derella

15-February-2018
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India represents a massive opportunity for Twitter: Matt Derella

Currently, Twitter is in the news for all the right reasons. Even though the micro blogging platform recently announced that it has posted its first quarterly profit in the company’s 12-year history, it is still struggling to increase its user base. On a short visit to India, Matt Derella, Twitter's Vice President of Global Revenue and Operations, in conversation with exchange4media explained this long-awaited shift to profitability.

"We finished the year on a strong note. It was an incredible ending to what was a really transformational year for us. When I look at the factors that have enabled us to bring us to this position of strength, I think it starts with a clear understanding of who we are. For many years, for a decade almost, we never really defined what Twitter was; what we stood for. When Jack Dorsey returned to the company two years ago, one of the first things he did was to define what Twitter really is. The clarity around who we are is the decision that makes one thousand decisions. It has really driven focus and operational excellence", Derella told e4m.

There is another strategic shift happening at Twitter. The company is looking at revenue beyond classic advertising channels in a bid to bolster its profitability. Speaking about the growth of multiple revenue streams, Derella added, “In the most recent quarter our advertising business grew at 7 per cent and we believe there is plenty of opportunity for us to help marketers build value. We also have other businesses where we have a very strong presence like our MoPub business, which is the world’s leading mobile ad exchange in the world. We also have a very strong data business and we are always exploring other areas where we can continue to add new value that translates into financial benefits for the company."

Over the last few years, Twitter has been focusing big on Live Streaming and it has, to a large extent, changed the game in its favour. Underlining how Live Streaming has become an important aspect of Twiter’s identity, Derella said, “I think it is a natural extension as it is helping us be the best at what is happening. We are also excited about it and now some big investments are happening around it. Why I’m excited about 2018 is because our product is leading the future of how to connect with this kind of content.”

Derella also spoke about how Twitter’s content strategy is centered and driven by its users. “When it comes to content strategy, the first thing we do is to listen to Twitter to know what are the people taking about in India and then from that information it guides us in our content partnership efforts. We are not guessing, we are just listening to the people, what they want and helping make Twitter even better for them by bringing out such kind of content," he explained.
When it comes to key markets for Twitter, India is one of its top priorities.

According to Derella, India presents a massive opportunity, especially with cricket and entertainment consumption giving the platform an edge over its competitors. “In the fourth quarter the international revenues grew 17% YoY and as I look across international markets, India represents a massive opportunity for Twitter. It is on an upward trajectory, and I am in India because I’m very aware of the massive opportunity that we have in this market. In fact we want to create a Twitter that resonates with all parts of India," said Derella.

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