Twitter has had a spate of very bad press recently, mostly for good reasons that I don’t need to rehash here. Lots of ink has been spilled about what ails the company, but suffice to say, Twitter’s lack of high-quality, professional, and most importantly, full-time management is obviously its biggest single issue. Until that is fixed, nothing else probably matters.
Nevertheless, Twitter’s much-beleaguered product team has had a lot of turnover, and it shows in their paucity of product evolution. Twitter has crowed loudly about such new enhancements as 280 characters, Moments and “Twitter Lite,” among other things you probably don’t care about, as if small-ball like this actually matters, while ignoring the burning, revenue-stagnant ship they’re on.
So, as a product manager who works on products designed to make money, I have some suggestions. I’m not talking to Twitter’s product team here – they’re smart people, and I no doubt have had blueprints for many of these ideas ready for some time. Twitter’s executive management and board, on the other hand, need to listen, or get out of the way. Twitter’s window of opportunity for becoming a first-tier social platform has likely already closed – that race with Facebook was lost long ago.
Twitter can be something else entirely, though, which is still both valuable and inimitable, while its core network of high-value users contributing real-time content still exists. That network is undeniably slipping away, though. Battered by abuse, choked with spam and drowned out by bots, what makes Twitter great is dying. Here are some ways to save it.