Less than a week after platform owner Elon Musk publicly told major brands to go f- themselves, X is attempting to win back small to medium-sized advertisers this holiday season. The company formerly known as Twitter is now promoting new ad opportunities in the elusive “Q5” -- from mid-December to mid-January.
“During this time, we see reduced CPMs and cost-per-conversion as consumers shop for post-holiday deals and products to support their New Year's ambitions,” the company wrote in a recent statement. “Last year, X saw a 5% reduction in the average CPM and a 27% reduction in the average cost-per-conversion.”
Based on engagement data from the previous year, X is making the argument that there is a “surge of engagement” around a wide variety of topics and conversations on the social media app, despite its recent loss of advertisers, users and revenue.
With the chance to reach a larger audience with promotions, “your brand can remain relevant to your audiences while driving maximum ROI,” the company said, adding that vertical video is the fastest growing surface on X with over 100 million people across the globe consuming vertical video for an average of 13 minutes per day.
However, X has a loose definition of what it means to view a post.
In its help center, the company states that anyone logged in to X who views a post on Home, Search, Profiles etc. -- whether or not the user is the author of the content -- counts as a view.
Thus, all views are unique, making the audience-reach opportunities in Q5 potentially baseless.
More importantly, X has proven itself as a dangerous space for advertisers since Musk’s takeover last year, with ongoing reports of major brands seeing their ads appearing next to harmful and offensive content. This issue paired with Musk’s unpredictable antics have driven away companies like IBM, Apple and Disney.
But highlighting opportunities in Q5 -- a controversial time to take advantage of cheaper ad buys -- X is likely attempting to move forward with its strategy to court small and medium-sized businesses opposed to the massive brands that have paused ad spend on the platform.
With this move, X is speaking to the majority of brands advertising on the platform. According to a MediaRadar analysis of ad spend between October and January 2023, 79% of the platform's 15,700 advertisers spent less than $25,000. However, 3% of companies that were running ads on X prior to Musk's antisemitic posts accounted for 78% of X's ad revenue.
This means that the promotion of Q5 ad-buying opportunities could lure more small to medium-sized brands to the site, or persuade existing advertisers to spend more, it won't make up for the gap in revenue left by the loss of X's biggest spenders.