Love him or hate him, Elon Musk is one of the most eccentric billionaires of our times. On April 4, the Tesla CEO joined Twitter’s board of directors with a 9.2% stake in the company.
This is not the first time Musk did something that took the internet by storm. His financial decisions and investments always give us something to talk about. His tweets are no exceptions. They lead to heated discussions on the internet and in big companies.
Within three weeks of buying 9.2% of Twitter, the billionaire took over the whole company. This hostile takeover of the social media site has left many people apprehensive about the future of the micro-blogging platform.
The question now is this: What does Elon Musk’s takeover of Twitter mean for the digital marketing landscape?
While Musk is an ardent tech preacher who has stated that he is open to more innovation on a platform (Twitter) that is much behind its peers, many social media marketing services could not get over the fact that Musk was involved in countless controversies- including his own unconventional notion about free speech that is considered radical- and may lead Twitter to have more hate speech and fake news.
Elon’s 1st post as the Twitter deal was revealed read: “Free speech is the bedrock of a functioning democracy, and Twitter is the digital town square where matters vital to the future of humanity are debated.” “I also want to make Twitter better than ever by enhancing the product with new features, making the algorithms open source to increase trust, defeating the spam bots, and authenticating all humans. Twitter has tremendous potential- I look forward to working with the company and the community of users to unlock it.” (italicized by us)
From the tone of his tweet and from other information that we already know about the possible future changes to Twitter, social media advertising experts expect the following updates:
- An Open-Source Algorithm
Musk has stated that he plans to open source the entire Twitter algorithm. The idea is to fight against manipulation and massive propaganda. This initiative will also let users know if their content has been downgraded or promoted.
Open-sourcing the code will let users who understand the code decipher how the algorithms work, and they can also suggest changes to it.
If this happens, it will greatly change the digital media marketing scene. A more transparent algorithm will force social media marketers to rethink how they create their content and encourage them to focus on their users. Thus, the new challenge to digital marketing services is to deliver more immersive content and maintain a safe environment.
- Authenticating All Humans
Elon’s tweet used the phrase “authenticating all humans”. Although it is unclear what he actually means, many digital media marketers assume that it means that Twitter will change its blue tick verification system. This sounds cool for stopping scams and bots, but some users have legitimate reasons to stay anonymous. Anonymous users aren’t just spammers- some users use the platform as whistle-blowers or to expose corruption, or just to post funny memes
So will checking on real accounts guarantee a safer environment that is free from misinformation? Many experts and digital media marketers believe that this can be worsened with the changes Elon Musk wants to implement.
- An Edit Button
The edit button is an update that many digital media marketing specialists have been waiting for. Musk held a poll on April 5, and over 70% voted in favour of it.
Twitter CEO Parag Agarwal retweet the poll saying that “The consequences of this poll will be important. Please vote carefully.”
So it looks like an edit button is on the horizon. However, there are numerous concerns that social media advertising specialists have. We have to take into consideration that a full edit or wipe button can be used to take a lot of messages out of context after they have been retweeted.
Apart from this issue, editing tweets can be an incredible resource for many digital marketing services providers. It is human nature to make a typo error or upload an incorrect file when making a campaign. Thus, it could be a game-changer for many social media marketing services.
Why do digital marketers care?
The sale of Twitter is a major change in the world of digital marketing, and we all will see its impact at some point. Remember that Musk has profitably run companies like PayPal, Tesla, and SpaceX despite major concerns.
The question is whether these changes will encourage marketers and brands to stick around and continue their social media marketing on Musk’s Twitter.
It is vital to keep in mind that even though we will have few filters on Twitter, it does not mean that we are less accountable as brands. Looking for the best way to communicate our services to prospects and clients must be our top priority. Thus to beat the algorithm, we must strive to create meaningful content for our audience.