Twitter Blue for Publishers

How to Make Money on Twitter: Digital Publisher’s Guide [2021]

Twitter recently announced a new way for digital publishers to monetize their followers. The social platform’s subscription-based system is just one of many ways to make money on Twitter in 2021.

If you’ve wondered how to make money on Twitter, you’re not alone. The next step once you’ve set up a business account and established your publication as an authority on Twitter is to start generating income for your efforts. Twitter’s new subscription based system called Super Follows makes that easier.

In the summer of 2021, Twitter introduced Super Follows to help publishers, and other content creators, monetize their followers by selling monthly subscriptions. Although the program is still in testing mode, and it is limited to users on the Apple iOS Twitter app, it is already available to many publishers in the United States.

How Does Twitter Super Follows Works?

Once they have signed up for Super Follows, publishers can start selling monthly subscriptions to their most loyal followers on Twitter. In exchange for a nominal monthly fee, followers can access exclusive content that’s available only to subscribers.

Examples of the types of exclusive content that publishers can share includes polls, conversation threads, voice tweets, and links. Twitter has already announced that additional enhanced features will be rolled out in the future, as well. These include Twitter Spaces, newsletters, and bonus Twitter content.

Currently, subscription rates on the Super Follows system are set at $2.99, $4.99, and $9.99 per month. Of that, publishers can expect to receive 97% of revenue after in-app purchases and fees are deducted, up to $50,000 of lifetime earnings. Large publishers that have reached the $50,000 threshold will be eligible to earn up to 80% after in-app purchases and fees are deducted. (Apple charges 30% for in-app purchases.)

A public badge signifies which Twitter users have subscribed to publishers (and other content creators’) feeds. These badgers are highlighted under the name of the user whenever they interact with the publisher. This makes it easier for publishers to quickly identify which followers are paying for subscriptions to their feeds, so they can engage with those fans before others.

To participate in Twitter’s Super Follows program, publishers must meet the following requirements:

  • Accounts active for at least three months
  • At least 10,000 active followers
  • Posted at least 25 tweets in the last month
  • Completed Twitter profile
  • Verified email address

Additional information about participation and eligibility requirements can be found on the Twitter app.

Additional Strategies for Twitter Monetization

The Super Follows system has the potential to be highly lucrative for some digital publishers, but other opportunities are still available for publishers that want to make money on Twitter.

Consider these options:

Tip Jar

Twitter Tip Jar is a way to give and receive money on the social platform. Just like a real life tip jar, followers can “tip” their favorite content creators as a way to show their appreciation. Digital publishers should add external links to their third-party payments accounts to their profiles or individual tweets, so users can send monetary tips through those services. Users on iOS and Android will see a special icon on the profile pages of publishers with the Tip Jar feature.

Ticketed Spaces

Publishers who host live events can take advantage of Ticketed Spaces, a new feature from Twitter. Spaces is Twitter’s version of the Clubhouse app. The Spaces feature is free, however its offshoot, the Ticketed Spaces feature, is what digital publishers who want to make money on Twitter will want to implement. With Ticketed Spaces, digital publishers can charge users to attend their live audio chat sessions, known as Spaces.

To participate in Ticketed Spaces and charge users to access audio events, publishers must have at least 1,000 followers and they must run at least three Spaces per month. Pricing can be set at anywhere from $1 to $999 per ticket.

Affiliate Promotions

Although this strategy is not officially endorsed by Twitter, it’s an approach that many digital publishers have used with great success. With affiliate promotions, publishers compose tweets with custom URLs linking to specific products or services. When a user clicks on the link and purchases the product or service, the publisher earns a small commission. Anyone can generate revenue by promoting affiliate products, however those publishers with large audiences are poised to see the greatest gains.

Promoting Subscriptions

If your website generates revenue through subscriptions or memberships, then Twitter can be an excellent space for self promotion, as well.

Digital publishers can use their Twitter feeds as a place to promote their own subscription programs and send traffic to their own websites, with links to their subscription forms and details about all the exclusive benefits that website subscribers can expect.

Email Marketing

Twitter is an excellent way to grow an email list. Digital publishers that send newsletters or other email marketing materials can tweet links to their sign-up forms and engage with potential subscribers through Twitter in a one-on-one fashion. In this strategy, the publisher is using Twitter as a place to sell and promote their email list.

Key Takeaways: Generating Revenue Through Twitter

Publishers can generate revenue through Twitter, regardless of how many followers they have. Many local news publishers and online magazines with fewer than 5,000 Twitter followers are using the strategies detailed above with great success. The key to being able to make money on Twitter is to focus more on the quality of followers than the quantity of followers. It’s better to have 1,000 engaged followers than 10,000 disengaged followers or bots. Publishers who purchase followers or engage in follow-for-a-follow tactics aren’t going to be as successful in monetizing their Twitter accounts as publishers with actively engaged fans.

To learn more about how to engage with followers on social media, read The 5 Best Twitter Strategies for Local News Publishers.