From others’ tweets and conversations to personal follower counts and interactions, Twitter wants users to devote every waking minute to Twitter.
To that end, the microblogging leader is rolling out real-time notifications, which will alert users whenever someone engages with their tweets.
“When you’re logged in … you will receive notifications if someone has replied, favorited or retweeted one of your tweets," Michael Ducker, senior product manager at Twitter, explained in a blog post on Thursday.
Over the next few weeks, users can also expect to receive notifications for direct messages and new followers. “They’re fully interactive, so that you can reply, favorite, retweet, and follow right from the notification,” Ducker explained.
By facilitating more engagement, however, Twitter runs the risk of overwhelming users. Addressing this potential issue, the company is encouraging users to adjust their account settings to control the likely barrage of notifications, alerts and the like.
It has been a busy week for Twitter. On Tuesday, the company began rolling out a very Facebook-like redesign of user profiles. Among other significant changes, popular tweets now appear a bit larger so as to surface better content for users.
Twitter also reportedly plans to introduce up to 15 new ad formats and improvements over the next six months, according to a recent Wall Street Journal report. In part, Twitter is likely hoping that more ads and higher user-engagement can offset its growing problem.
The company’s domestic growth is expected to decline from nearly 20% in 2003 to below 10%, next year, according to a recent report from eMarketer. In four short years, growth will slow to just 6.4%, the research firm expects.
By eMarketer’s reckoning, Twitter’s usership will grow from about 43 million U.S. consumers in 2013 to 65 million in 2018 -- or about half of Facebook’s current domestic user base.
Beyond Ducker’s blog post, Twitter declined to discuss the strategy behind its notification changes on Friday.