Social Media Projected To Lead Global Ad Spend In 2021

The partnership with Shopify offers merchants a quick way to upload catalogs to Pinterest and turn products into shoppable Product Pins. Pinterest said the number of catalog feed uploads on its platform increased by over 14 times worldwide from March 2020 through March 2021, and 97% of top searches are unbranded, according to Adweek.

In the last earnings report, Pinterest executives warned about potential headwinds from less engagement due to economies reopening. The company also discussed changes in privacy and tracking data, which was a major topic of discussion for all four social media companies during the last earnings reports.

Due to the nature of Pinterest—the company is able to capture first party data on queries, saves, and board creation—Pinterest is less exposed to privacy changes, according to Pinterest CFO Todd Morganfeld.

Twitter Ramps Up Hiring, Expenses

Twitter is guiding for total revenue of $952 million at the midpoint, with GAAP operating income between ($50) million and break even. The consensus estimates for Twitter is $1.026 billion in revenue, up 27% YoY, according to YCharts.

Executives struck a bullish tone in the last earnings report, with plans in 2021 for significant hiring and new features to boost revenue. Executives anticipate growing total costs and expenses 25% or more this year due to hiring in engineering, product, design, and research, and the final buildout of a new data center. Still, Twitter is projecting revenue to grow faster than expenses—based on its assumption that the global pandemic continues to improve and the impact from privacy changes associated with iOS 14 are modest.

Twitter faced more difficult comps in March and downloads were down 14% YoY, versus up 18% in February, according to data from SensorTower. International markets saw a stronger decline, down 15%, compared to the U.S., down 7%.

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During the last earnings call, Twitter guided for 20% YoY growth of monetizable monthly active users for Q1, and no change to the pre-pandemic goal of growing mDAU 20% or more over multiple years. Users who joined Twitter last March when shelter-in-place orders began have stayed with Twitter better than previous groups, according to the call.

In March, Twitter DAUs worldwide were up 28% YoY and up 4% month over month, according to data from SensorTower.

For Q1 2021, Twitter DAUs were up 27% YoY and up 3% QoQ. In the U.S., DAUs 13% YoY and 2% QoQ, with strong international growth of 30% YoY and 3% QoQ.

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To prepare for privacy changes associated with iOS 14, the company last quarter released mobile app promotion, which helps advertisers drive engagement on Twitter, and Twitter Click ID, which helps track conversions.

Twitter CFO Ned Segal expressed confidence at the Morgan Stanley Technology, Media, and Telecom Conference March 3 as the company prepares for privacy changes, and noted that much of the data Twitter collects is not tied to a device ID.

This year, Twitter plans to leverage data for better ad targeting, increase revenue from small and medium sized businesses; continue updating MAP; experiment with non-advertising subscription-based revenue, and capture more ad dollars from the multi-billion dollar app advertising industry.

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