The deal with Google announced by Twitter has got a lot of people talking. Under the deal, advertisers can purchase ads on Twitter via the Doubleclick buying system developed by Google, with the result that Google displays real-time tweets as actual search results. The deal has led to gossip that Google is using the agreement as a kind of test-run to determine if acquiring Twitter would make sense. Merger talk was very evident at the Engage 2015 social media conference in Prague, held in May.
The latest person to discuss the possibility of a merger is Chris Sacca, who was an early investor in Twitter. Sacca, founder of Lowercase Capital, told CNBC’s Closing Bell programme that he believes Twitter would be an “instant fit” from the point of view of Google because the search engine giant has “never understood social” and the type of personal interactions it generates. Sacca qualified his comments, however, by suggesting that if Twitter were to change the way it engages with users, it would be better off remaining independent. He has proposed that Twitter create channels according to topic and make the monitoring of live events easier to accomplish and participate in by putting in place a separate tab within Twitter. Sacca has also suggested that Twitter develop a save button in respect of articles and offers appearing in users’ news feeds and read receipts so that users can determine if a celebrity has seen their retweet or follow. If Twitter does not make such changes, Sacca suggests that the likes of Google or Microsoft should bid for it.
Anyone expecting a Google/Twitter tie-up in the near future might want to reconsider the odds, however. Looked at from a financial perspective, Google does not need to acquire Twitter, although full access to tweets would be a positive from the point of view of search results relevancy. Twitter does not need to sell because it is surviving just fine independently. Furthermore, of Twitter’s seven board members, two are founders of the company and CEO Dick Costolo can be added to that group. How likely is it that they would want to sell up Twitter’s independence?
Nonetheless, the Google/Twitter theory has acquired some momentum.