Healthier Twitter looks to Philippines for boost
By Miguel R. Camus
Philippine Daily Inquirer
March 8, 2018 at 5:20 am

Social-media platform Twitter is on a growth path, buoyed by rising numbers in the Philippines and the rest of Southeast Asia.

Arvinder Gujral, Twitter’s managing director and senior business director in the region, spoke to journalists in Manila on Wednesday to help drive home this point.

Citing Twitter’s average global audience growth of 12 percent, he noted Southeast Asia and the Philippines were “way ahead of that in percentage terms.”

“Southeast Asia and the Philippines are carrying the global average, global growth,” he said.

The platform, whose financial struggles and potential sale were well documented in 2016, has seen a turnaround in recent months. Established in 2006, it reported its first ever profit in the fourth quarter of 2017.

Gujral said audience growth has been on the uptick over the last five quarters, with active users worldwide now around 330 million. Country-specific figures were not available.

According to Gujral, most Twitter users in the Philippines are millennials, or those born from the 1980s through the mid 1990s.

He added there was an almost equal split between male and female users. He said this was different from other emerging markets, which tend to have more male users.

He said Filipino Twitter users were mainly interested in three major areas: entertainment, which includes television shows and beauty pageants; sports (mainly basketball); and public service announcements, such as government warnings when powerful storms hit.

Twitter, meanwhile, has been enjoying more relevance after it implemented a series of tweaks, from the algorithm used to determine what users see to allowing 280-character “tweets” from the original 140 characters. These changes encouraged users to stay longer on the platform and use it more frequently.

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