Allstate Journal

Much of Twitter’s opportunity already los

The second-quarter surge in digital advertising revenue just reported by Google, along with the large quarterly gain also expected from Facebook, shows just how much of Twitter’s market opportunity is being captured by its competitors. The huge gains in sales and profit at its much-larger rivals come as Twitter on Tuesday is expected to report yet another quarterly operating loss for the same period amid disappointing user growth. In mid-morning trading, Twitter shares are down 3.5%, to $34.12, and is near a 52-week low.Twitter1

The San Francisco-based social media company is expected to post operating and net losses of more than $500 million in 2015, according to Wall Street estimates, despite its own surging sales. That figure is on top of the $1.55 billion in aggregate operating losses Twitter incurred during the five years ended in 2014. The investor money Twitter has burned through has come and gone like the dozens of executives who’ve joined and then departed the company since its founding in 2006.

During those same years, hundreds of millions of consumers have visited Twitter but decided not to sign up for its service. In an 8,500-word Internet post called, “What Twitter Could Be,”early Twitter investor Chris Sacca this month flagged what consumers have already shown to be its most persistent flaw: Twitter is too difficult for the average consumer to use. Its content also has been either too uninteresting or threatening to keep most of them coming back.

“Almost one billion users have tried Twitter and not stuck around,” wrote Sacca, among Twitter’s largest outside shareholders at the time of its November 2013 IPO. Its content also has been either too uninteresting or threatening to keep most of them coming back. After nine years of watching users come and go, the company last week finally unveiled what it calls a “Safety Center” to help protect users from being bullied or harassed on the site.

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