Recent reports indicate that while Meta’s new app, Threads, had a huge initial launch, its growth has substantially slowed down. Despite this, Linda Yaccarino, the current CEO of X (previously known as Twitter), emphasizes the importance of keeping an eye on competitors.
In her first interview as the head of X, Yaccarino expressed her views to CNBC. She acknowledged the initial hype surrounding Threads, attributing it to their launch pad from Instagram. While she admits the competition’s momentum has waned, Yaccarino stresses the unpredictable nature of the tech landscape and the need for vigilance.
However, X’s main focus remains on carving its own path towards profitability. Yaccarino believes that Threads seems to be emulating old Twitter. In contrast, X’s vision represents a leap towards the future. This new direction was evident when Elon Musk, who previously led the company and is now its chief technology officer, steered it towards a massive rebranding to become more akin to China’s multi-purpose app, WeChat.
Musk’s tenure was marked by significant turbulence, including mass layoffs and policy upheavals. Yet Yaccarino exudes confidence in the company’s refreshed vision. She believes that X’s rebranding symbolizes its ambition to be more than just a social media platform, evolving into a global digital space where users can interact, transact, and even make video calls. She envisions X as a hub where people gather in real time, driven by open dialogue.
After a period of cost-cutting, X is pivoting back to expansion. Though they’ve seen a significant reduction in staff numbers since Musk’s leadership, Yaccarino confirms that hiring is underway, signaling a shift from austerity to growth.
But the path ahead is not devoid of challenges. X’s financial health is a concern, especially after revealing a 50% slump in advertising revenue and mounting debts. Despite Musk’s controversial stance on content moderation, Yaccarino highlighted the company’s commitment to ensuring a safe environment for brands. X recently introduced advanced brand safety measures, emphasizing their goal of shielding advertisers from unsuitable content.
In her recent discussion, Yaccarino confidently stated that big-name brands like Coca Cola, Visa, and State Farm are once again collaborating with X. This is a promising sign after many advertisers previously withdrew due to concerns about the platform’s direction and content.
To sum up, under Yaccarino’s guidance and with a fresh perspective, X is poised to tackle the challenges that lie ahead. The company is on a journey to reinvent itself while ensuring it remains a significant player in the digital landscape.