I have heard this before, but is the Twitter situation going to be the thing that moves the needle for RSS? I started using Revue to send newsletters last year as an option for people who were trying to follow my websites on social media but ran into the algorithm deciding not to shat them anything that was being posted, especially with Facebook Pages. It had some subscribers but not that many. After Twitter killed Revue, I also moved to Substack and have seen some growth, but I’m also realizing that we can’t replicate Twitter with email newsletters.
When you have that blurring, though, the idea that you can measure productivity the same way as you did when we spent 8 hours building a widget seems a little overly simplistic, doesn’t it?
The challenge is finding the thing we can measure to evaluate whether people are accomplishing the goals we set for them, but those goals can’t be the “number of things or hours” when the work is so much more than that.
Tim leaves out of his analysis accounting for how many users will no longer be there and how that much smaller user base impacts the value proposition. If I’m a journalist using Twitter to interact with readers and attract new readers to my publication, the ROI of paying for a fully-featured Twitter account includes considering how many people it helps me reach. Is it still worth it when my 250,000 followers get cut to 25,000? What about 2,500? What about less?
Before you dismiss that as unlikely, I’d like you to remember that recent Pew research found that “the top 25% of users by tweet volume produce 97% of all tweets, while the bottom 75% of users produce just 3%, according to an analysis conducted over a three-month period in 2021.”
I’m going to just assume that the 75% group who isn’t tweeting very often is not going to pay for Twitter. Of the other 25% we have to consider how many of them will fall into the $12 per year plan because they already don’t follow many people but use Twitter to interact with people who want to follow them. The question is, will those followers still exist? And if they don’t exist, is Twitter still a global conversation? Or is it just another place for privileged people who pay for membership to talk to each other?
What I have been experimenting with, and which might interest some of you, is the new email newsletter tool that Twitter has made available, called Revue. It’s a little more hands-on than the current newsletter, so while I plan to send it out every Friday, I can’t swear to you that will always happen. On the other hand, I get to add some more stuff to this newsletter because it’s more hands-on. So I can pull in some links from other sources, drop in some text, etc. In essence, I’ll be experimenting with it, but you can expect that the goal will remain the goal I’ve always had with my blog, writing, and sharing interesting things that might help you out with technology, work, etc.
You can subscribe, and take a peek at some of my recent experimental issues over at my Revue profile. I hope you’ll consider subscribing, and sharing with your friends if you find it useful!