Trump’s Tweets Could Give Twitter a Bump in Users, BTIG SaysBy and
President’s round-the-clock missives spur ‘meaningful uptick’
Upgrades stock to buy; says takeover speculation may reignite
Trump’s use of the 140-character messaging service at all hours of the day to bypass the traditional media is giving people a reason to learn how to use the platform, creating “a second chance to attract and retain users,” BTIG analyst Richard Greenfield wrote Wednesday in a research note to clients. At the same time, the focus on Trump’s tweets has turned the media into “a giant marketing vehicle” for the company, he wrote.
Greenfield, who upgraded the stock to buy from neutral, wrote that there has been a “meaningful uptick” in downloads of the Twitter app on iOS devices in the U.S. this year and cited a CivicScience survey that shows an increase in daily usage. He also noted that a rebound in user growth and engagement could reignite Twitter takeover speculation.
“Not only is President Trump actively using Twitter to communicate directly with the American people, his tweets are impacting consumers all around the world,” Greenfield wrote in the note. “While we believe this is clearly helping drive users of the Twitter platform, it is the ability for consumers to react in real-time to these tweets that is driving engagement higher.”
Still, while Trump’s followers on Twitter have increased to 24.2 million from 18.6 million at the beginning of the year, Twitter executives have said that Trump’s Twitter-focused campaign had no noticeable impact on user growth or time spent on the site.
The stock rose as much as 2.8 percent Wednesday, and is little changed since the election. Twitter is scheduled to report fourth-quarter results Thursday morning.