Twitter has made several function and design changes recently, not only to its marquee platform, but to its growing Periscope product.
Twitter is the fastest real-time platform out there now, but finding ways to re-engage lost users is a major question for the company. Twitter has been bringing Periscope, a raw live-streaming app acquired earlier this year, to the forefront. The company also recently launched Moments, the result of the long-awaited Project Lightning that cultivates the best tweets surrounding trending topics.
SocialTimes chatted with Cory Edwards, head of Adobe’s Social Business Center of Excellence, about how Twitter could best utilize these two products.
Edwards acknowledged that for many users, the stream of constant information can be frightening. Moments could be a way to cut through the noise, he said:
The stream is overwhelming and I think that being able to bring those in categorically, focusing in on key events as they’re happening and focusing on the key content and posts that are relevant is a nice way to complement the significant amount of data. … The potential (to retain users) is there. The initial steps are right.
However, while having an algorithm to decide top posts around trending moments can be useful, Edwards said Twitter should stop short of emulating Facebook too much. He said that people use the two platforms for different reasons and that overlapping features might steal from what makes Twitter great:
Twitter doesn’t need to be as big as Facebook. Their value and their functions are quite different. The value that Twitter brings is in its ability to provide a very public real-time look at anything that is happening, and to see it in a real and transparent way. It is not filtered and there isn’t an algorithm that determines its usefulness to a particular group.
Twitter does have one hot product that Facebook only has for celebrities and public figures: a live-streaming app. Hundreds of thousands of people are swarming Periscope to both watch and broadcast live, raw and unedited video. At the Twitter Flight conference in October, Periscope announced new features, such as time travel — allowing a viewer to watch a random feed from anywhere in the world.
It will be very interesting to see how Twitter integrates Periscope into both the timeline feature and Moments.
Edwards feels that Twitter can do a better job of bringing Periscope more front and center into the main experience:
If they want to really take advantage of the real time nature of Twitter, then the ability to identify relevant Periscopes that are occurring needs to be searchable and needs to be integrated into Twitter search in a way that’s not today. When that happens … you are radially altering the live viewing of a newsworthy event.
Readers: If you’ve avoided Twitter, have Moments and Periscope persuaded you to give it another shot?