Twitter, and many social media platforms like it that rely on advertising as its bread and butter, witnessed one of the most bewildering quarters it has ever had, as it went on to record a 19% loss in quarterly revenues, while customer engagement soared through the sky.
In a letter directed to its shareholders containing the results of the second quarter of the apocalyptic 2020, the company said, “Revenue was $683 million in Q2, down 19% year over year, reflecting moderate recovery in advertising demand relative to the last three weeks of March.”
Obviously, COVID-19 played a huge part in Twitter’s disappointing performance this quarter, which was exacerbated due to a fall in advertising stimulated by struggling businesses and falling global economy. Compared to the $727 million that the company reeled in during Q2 2019 as advertising revenue, the second quarter of 2020 saw this number falling down to a mere $562 million. The other part of Twitter’s business model, that is, revenues through data licensing and other sources, grew by $7 million over the year, bringing in $121 million for the social media giant.
The company explains that over the year, it’s total expenses grew by 5% to $807 million, as it continues to “balance targeted headcount growth with further reducing lower
priority investments,” resulting in a total operating loss of $124 million.
Compared to Q2 2019, when the company witnessed a 9% growth in GAAP Operating Income, registering $76 million in profit, there was an 18% decline this time around.
While all of this was happening, Twitter say an ironical boost in its customer engagement, recording a 34% jump in its Average monetizable DAU (mDAU), a parameter that is native to the company, which ended up becoming 186 million over the quarter. Twitter credited this jump to “global conversation around current events and ongoing product improvements,” as well as continued shelter-in-place requirements.
“Growth in mDAU continued to accelerate in Q2, with average mDAU of 186 million, up 34%. This marks the highest quarterly year-over-year growth rate we’ve delivered since we began reporting mDAU growth. Growth continued to be broad-based, with double-digit growth rates in all top 10 markets. We grew US mDAU by 24% and international mDAU by 37%,” the company said in the blog post.
As more and more businesses open up, and advertising becomes popular again, Twitter can expect to see a boost in its advertising revenues once again, which means that the next quarter might not be as bad as this one. The same cannot be said about Facebook, however, since the company is facing a massive ad ban from multiple countries across the globe.