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Twitter pitches advertisers on 'premium content' amid Musk's takeover

Kerry Flynn
May 5, 2022
Twitter logo with speech bubble of Cash App logo

Illustration: Megan Robinson/Axios

Twitter pitched the value of its platform to hundreds of advertisers on a rooftop in the Financial District on Wednesday evening.

Why it matters: Twitter acted like a duck, presenting a placid demeanor despite feverish action happening beneath the surface.

Details: The event occurred coincidentally just a short walk from the New York Stock Exchange where the company is publicly traded but soon may not be — at least for a bit — if Elon Musk's takeover succeeds.

  • The only acknowledgment of the current state of affairs came at the top of the 20-minute presentation: "It has been a quiet month at Twitter, so no better time to get together," said JP Maheu, vice president of global client solutions at Twitter.
  • Whereas many of the week's events focused on creator-driven content, Twitter's presentation centered on its new and existing partnerships with publishers such as Condé Nast, Essence, E! News and Fox Sports.
  • "Here's what we've always known: People turn to Twitter to find out what's happening. Here's what's different now: People come to Twitter to watch what's happening," said Robin Wheeler, vice president of client solutions at Twitter. "The bottom line is Twitter is the place that people come to watch premium content."

Meanwhile, an SEC filing Thursday revealed Musk has found more investors to fund his takeover. The equity commitments are now $27.25 billion, and he lowered his margin loan to $6.25 billion.

Yes, but: Axios' Felix Salmon writes that Musk's funding plan had been looking murky. "Musk has already maxed out the amount of money he can borrow to pay for Twitter," he wrote.

State of play: Twitter has already worked to reassure advertisers that the platform remains a safe and effective place for them, per the FT.

  • Several ad buyers in attendance at Wednesday night's NewFront told Axios they're waiting to see what happens and not yet concerned about what the takeover could mean for them.
  • For now, Twitter continues to operate "business as usual," and that includes convincing advertisers to give them more money.
  • "Your partnership makes us better each and every day. We are exceptionally grateful for how you stand with us and how we work together to do incredible things," Twitter Chief Customer Officer Sarah Personette said to end the event.
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