Is Twitter Dead?
By Daniel Murray
|Was it a Marketing stunt? Was it just buzz? Nope. Twitter is officially ditching their iconic logo for Elon Musk’s new brainchild “X, the everything app”. |
Everyone has been jumping to
I love reading the comments, the hot takes, the deep dives about all that’s right and wrong about the rebrand, and Marketing Bestie I am here today to give you all of my thoughts about the rebrand.
This is the stuff of dreams (and nightmares) for us Marketers, so let’s get into it! Twitter was founded in 2006 as a social networking app where users had 140 characters to share all that was on their minds, but quickly became the world’s “town hall”. A place for short and long form written content, a hub for trending news, and now a hot spot for long form video content. Twitter had built a massive reputation in the industry, with over 450M users worldwide, used by the world’s most influential people, and a source for timely news, funny memes (my fav part about Twitter), and all types of conversations.
Twitter established a level of brand equity rivaling some of the world’s biggest brands. Reaching “verbification” status, Twitter found themselves in the conversation with brands like Google and PayPal. You don’t search something up online, you Google it. You don’t pay someone electronically, you PayPal them. You don’t post something on Twitter, you Tweet something. And this is not an accomplishment to scoff at. A brand that is verbified becomes an extension of our memory. This was a massive differentiator for Twitter in a highly competitive market and they just threw it away.
Elon wants to rename a “Tweet” to an “X”. I mean, no one wants any more eXes in their life (sorry I had to say it LOL). It will take time for that to catch on, brand equity is not cheap, it takes years of consistent work to earn. But let’s dive into the actual execution of the rebrand…I originally heard about it from Ari (good ‘ol word of mouth Marketing) and I thought she was messing with me (not a good indication for if the rebrand makes sense lol). Then I went on Twitter and searched up Twitter’s brand account and saw the name and logo were switched to “X”.
The @twitter handle had become @x. The design of the brand account and logo is simple yet techy and follows the 4th law of Robert Greene’s book called Power, which states that when you are trying to impress people with words, the less you say, the more original and impressive you seem. X isn’t saying much at all here in their rebrand, impressive.
But outside of their brand account, there seems to be a lack of cohesion in the roll out of the new branding. The site is still called Twitter.com, but the logo on the site has changed.
|The search bar references the app as “Twitter”, conflicting with the logo on the left.|
|And in the feed it prompts you to Tweet something, there’s no mention of “X-ing” something.|
|So it seems the torch being passed on to X, is only in a few select parts. Even if you visit Twitter’s about section, there is zero mention of the new era X app. The biggest red flag about this aspect is that it may cause confusion. Without a cohesive rebrand, you will lessen the legitimacy of your efforts. If you or your brand is looking to rebrand, prioritize cohesiveness in execution, it will pay dividends.|
|What’s the strategy behind this all? Elon’s goal is to make X, the everything app. And us Marketers have heard this sentence in all types of contexts, for all types of products, and it never ends well. If you are Marketing your product to everyone and everything, you are Marketing to nobody. Now for Twitter/X, I don’t think it’s too late to rewind. This rebrand has built a ton of buzz for Twitter and Elon alike, grabbing some attention away from the new kid on the block, Threads. If I was in the Marketing department at Twitter I would roll out a plan of announcing how the rebrand to X was a Marketing stunt to announce the release of a new product feature. |
And that new product feature is a podcasting section called X (just a thought). Just how Twitter already has Spaces, X could be the hub for all podcasts, while ALSO playing into Elon’s SpaceX venture. The podcast industry is massive and is one that Twitter has not really ventured into. There are over 400M podcast listeners worldwide and the market sits at a whopping $24B, a pretty lucrative opportunity for Twitter.
I’m curious to see how this will play out for Twitter, as a Marketer I love seeing brands make bold moves like this because at the end of the day we’re going to be able to pull something away from this, whether it’s a model for success or a lesson of failure.