- Twitter, the social network whose user base grew 14% to 139 million users in Q2, merged its agency development and application program interface (API) solutions department to help advertisers publish and hone their campaigns. Stephanie Prager, the company's former head of global agency development, will oversee the combined group as head of global agency and platform solutions, per information shared with Mobile Marketer. Prager will report to Sarah Personette, VP of global Twitter client solutions.
- Before the move, Twitter's agency development team focused on relationships with major ad agencies, while its platform solutions department focused on ad-tech companies such as 4C Insights, Amobee and SocialCode marketing, Ad Age reported. Those companies work on automated ad campaigns among digital media platforms such as Facebook, Pinterest, Snapchat and Twitter.
- Twitter said merging the groups only affects its ads API, not its other API groups that work with software developers to build apps that connect to Twitter or research trends and current events on the platform. The ads API lets marketers publish, analyze and optimize ads based on Twitter data.
Twitter's restructuring, which the company said won't result in job losses, reflects changes in the advertising industry and shows that the platform wants to increase its value to advertisers by making it easier to quickly deploy campaigns around the conversations taking place there.
Traditional ad agencies are expanding their digital tech capabilities around placing and optimizing digital ads, in some cases offering solutions that are similar to ad-tech companies. Those trends are reshaping the operations of ad and media agencies, which face increased competition from non-traditional companies like consulting firms for the marketing dollars of major brands, many of which are in-housing some capabilities.
The drive for digital- and data-driven marketing continues to bring the ad-tech and creative sides of advertising closer together. The value of mergers and acquisitions in the martech sector nearly doubled to $7.2 billion in the first half of 2019 from a year earlier amid a scramble for consumer data that support ad campaigns, according to consulting firm R3. Forty percent of the top 30 acquisitions in the past six months were for martech companies. Notable deals include Publicis Groupe's $4.4 billion purchase of data-marketing firm Epsilon. Consulting firm Accenture this year made the biggest acquisition in its 10-year history with the $475 million purchase of Droga5, a creative agency that's earned industry recognition for clients such as Amazon Prime Video, IHOP and HBO's "Game of Thrones."
Twitter's internal moves come as the company extends its winning streak to seven straight quarters of profitability, contrasting with years of losses after going public in 2013. The company's revenue rose 18% to $841 million in Q2 from a year earlier, beating Wall Street estimates of $829 million. Twitter forecast that its operating costs would rise 20% this year as it adds workers to improve its platform, including better policing of abusive behavior. A greater effort to remove toxic tweets led to an 18% drop in reports of spam or suspicious behavior in Q2, CEO Jack Dorsey said in a conference call.