After a disastrous interview at the Code 2023 Conference last week, in which she seemed largely out of her element, X CEO Linda Yaccarino has bounced back in a new appearance at Khanference in Dallas, where Yaccarino seemed much more prepared, sharing a range of key stats on X user behavior, and where the platform is seeing growth in 2023.
And after being grilled on usage numbers last week, and not having the answers on hand, Yaccarino came armed with some key stats this time around, which are worth noting for those planning their social media strategy, and the potential for X outreach.
Here are some of the key insights shared by Yaccarino at the event:
Users are spending 14% more time on X
Yaccarino says that people are spending more time in the app, which is also reflective of the “cumulative user seconds per day” stat that owner Elon Musk keeps repeating.
Back in July, Musk noted that X was on track to reach a record high in user seconds, as reported by iOS and Android, though some have suggested that this is not an accurate measure, and that X itself can’t actually measure this, based on the data it’s able to access.
It’s also hard to know exactly what this means. Because X is reporting overall time spent, not average per user, it could mean that a proportion of users are spending way more time in the app, but most are spending less.
Without more insight, it’s difficult to take this as a definitive measure of positive growth. But it’s something, which could factor into your planning.
Video consumption has increased by 20%
This is not a big surprise.
Elon has noted that video content is getting more emphasis, as part of X’s drive to keep people in the app, and as such, it makes sense that video views are on the rise.
As they are in every app. If you didn’t know that creating video content is likely to drive more reach and engagement, you’re probably not paying attention, but creating great, resonant video content is not as easy as just grabbing your phone and filming whatever you have available.
Gen-Z is the largest and fastest-growing segment
Yaccarino says that almost 200 million Gen Z users log into the X app every month, which, when you also consider that X has claimed to have some 550 million monthly active users, gives you some idea of the dominance of this segment (40%).
Of course, Gen Z is a large bracket, taking in people aged between 11 and 26. But it does point to the opportunities of using X to reach younger markets, especially when most would consider TikTok or IG as the best options for such.
X facilitates over 500 million posts a day
This is a somewhat contentious one, because Elon Musk recently noted that X is only seeing between 100 and 200 million posts per day in the app, which would represent a significant drop on the engagement that Twitter was seeing before Musk took over at the app.
As far back as 2013, Twitter was reporting that it was facilitating 500 million posts per day, on average. So it’s either seen no posting growth over the past decade, or it’s suffered a big decline in original updates.
In some respects, that latter would make sense, because people, in general, are posting less to social apps, while according to the X team, 80% of X users never post at all, using the app in “read only” mode.
But no, Yaccarino has sought to correct the record here, while X has also confirmed to TechCrunch that 500 million posts per day is the correct answer.
So why the discrepancy between what Elon shared and what Yaccarino’s now saying?
According to X, the 500 million posts per day can be broken down like this:
- 100 million original posts per day
- 100 million replies to posts every day
- 300 million quote posts and reposts
As such, when Elon referred to “200 million posts”, he was only referring to original updates and replies, but actually, full posting activity expands to reposts and quotes, which make up the majority of in-app activity.
Which give you some interesting context around X’s overall activity. Essentially, X is reliant on just 100 million original updates per day to fuel its whole ecosystem, and with the platform claiming some 253 million daily active users, that means that, on average, X’s daily users are posting just 0.4 wholly original posts per day.
Though in reality, based on X’s “read only” user stat, what this really means that the 50 million X users who actually ever post anything at all are sharing two updates, on average, every 24 hours.
That’s not a great amount of activity, but maybe, that doesn’t matter, so long as people are paying attention.
X is seeing 1.5 million new sign-ups every day
Yaccarino says that new sign-ups are up 4% year-over-year, representing rising enthusiasm and interest in the X platform.
Though that’s seemingly not reflected in X’s user numbers.
Back in March, X reported that it now has 253 million daily active users, an increase of 15 million on the 238 million mDAU that Twitter reported in July 2022. If X is adding 1.5 million more users per day it should be seeing that level of increase every 10 days or so, so I’m not exactly sure how this matches up.
Then again, as Yaccarino noted in her interview last week, X is seeing more activity and interest, while it’s also removing accounts due to spam and bot traffic. So maybe, as it loses those bot profiles, it’s replacing them with new users, which is why the total number isn’t increasing in step.
X is seeing significant growth in creators
As it continues to develop its ad revenue share program, X is seeing increasing interest from creators, with many more users looking to build their profile, and tap into X’s monetization offering.
Yaccarino says the number of creators signing up to the program has increased 10x since it first announced the program back in June, while X has paid out almost $20 million dollars to creators via the scheme thus far.
It’s one of the better initiatives that the X team has implemented, though there are concerns that it may not be a viable, long-term process, as X continues to revise its payout system, and ensure that it remains sustainable and equitable.
As you may sense, there’s a level of skepticism around X’s claims because most of them are unproven, with X no longer sharing performance updates or full data to back up its figures. But these are the data points that Yaccarino has shared, and maybe, they’ll influence how you view the X re-brand, and the potential of the app moving forward.