Twitter tests promotional subscription service to auto-boost tweets

Twitter is now trialling a subscription plan that auto-boosts tweets to reach a greater audience. Costing $99 a month, the subscribed accounts will see their tweets promoted, which means they show up more frequently across people’s timelines.

It caters to smaller businesses and individuals lacking a proper advertising infrastructure. Users simply continue tweeting as normal and don’t even have to create their own campaigns. Twitter will also generate weekly reports to highlight any data engagement, new followers or impressions.

Under the current beta programme, select users are testing the feature for free for a month to promote the first 10 tweets every day. Any replies, quotes or retweets are not being promoted. Audiences are selected based on demographics such as interests or location.

The move follows a lackluster earnings report by Twitter last week. Total revenue dropped 5% to $574 million for the second quarter and advertising revenue was down 8% year-on-year to $489 million. Now, the company is trying to boost its ad business to find a way out of the downward spiral.

However, the service could potentially amplify the sort of messages nobody wants to see such as advertising or other undesirable content. This could spell disaster for Twitter if it doesn’t find a way to sift out those sorts of tweets.