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Will Elon Musk make or break Twitter?

Warren Linsdell Director, Media 4 November 2022

So, the saga behind Musk’s takeover of Twitter has reached its conclusion. Or has it?

Nearly a year ago when Musk started investing in the company, followed by the announcement of his intent to buy control in April, the camp was divided between those who thought it would be a good or a bad thing.

In the last few weeks, the media has thrown everything at the story, including the kitchen sink!

That coverage seems to have latched on to the curiosity of Musk’s character as potentially being bad news for the brand. Data from BrandVue, Savanta’s daily brand tracking tool, certainly shows a spike in negative perception around what people have been hearing about it over the last few days.

While we’ve become all too familiar with ‘U-turns’ at the highest levels, Musk came full circle. On Thursday, April 14th, he announced an offer to buy Twitter for $54.20 a share. On April 25th, Twitter accepted. By July 8th, he had reneged on the deal. Now, as of October 27th, the new owner of Twitter is Elon Musk.

During that time, he has intimated his plan. Twitter would become a market square where people can talk freely, in an apparent crusade to protect free speech. Advertising income as a proportion of revenue would be slashed, a monthly charge would be introduced for Twitter’s ‘’blue check’’ verification etc. etc. Renowned for doing things his way, the board was promptly ‘relieved of its duties’ as soon as he walked through the doors.

So, while Negative Buzz has peaked in the last week, a closer look shows this has actually been a long time coming.

It’s more than just coincidence that this started to climb shortly after Musk announced his takeover bid.

The question is, how much are people going to be put off by this new Twitter world? Interest in the brand seems to have followed the shenanigans behind the takeover debacle.

Brand Preference was growing and continued to do so when Musk began investing in Twitter heavily at the beginning of this year. It peaked around the time the purchase plan was put on the table, and then started to fall when that plan appeared to be collapsing. However, that was followed by a steady recovery. Whether that aligns with relief the deal would never be done, or hope in the potential that it still would, probably depends on which side of the fence you are.

What’s also interesting, despite a plot that will inevitably be written about in a book by someone at some time, this story doesn’t seem to have detracted from people’s excitement around the brand, reaching a peak in October, albeit starting to drop in the last few days.

As the story continues to unfold in the media and on our screens, it’s a bit like one of those TV dramas where we can’t wait to tune in to next week’s episode – OK, maybe that’s just me.

The question though still stands; will Elon Musk make or break Twitter? We’ll be watching with interest over the coming months.

BrandVue Media acts as an invaluable tool for brands to measure changes in KPI metrics against competitors and react in real time to develop strategic responses to mitigate any negative impacts on the brand. For more information, please get in touch here.

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