Linkedin and Twitter acquired: end clap for web 2.0

In the 2000s, the leaders of web 2.0 services, Twitter and Linkedin, were both bought by Elon Musk and Microsoft for tens of billions of dollars, respectively. From a stunt to a well-calculated acquisition, the strategies behind these takeovers differ profoundly.

Because nature abhors a vacuum, in the graveyard of stellar web services of the 2000s, a few nuggets that couldn’t resist the Internet bubble (Altavista, AOL, Yahoo…) succeeded and eventually became unicorns. This is especially true for Facebook, the lucky winner of consumer networking against Myspace, but also for BtoB Linkedin (2002) and microblogging site Twitter (2006). After each succeeded in becoming a unicorn in its own niche and succeeded in capturing its users, the latter two ended their independence by bowing to the sirens of market players of very different generations, but with particularly strong financial foundations. .

The takeover of Linkedin by Microsoft in June 2016 had a lightning effect: by putting $26 billion on the table, the Redmond firm thus offered itself the largest social network among professionals. 7 years later, it’s Twitter’s turn – after many twists and turns – to finally pass under the control of businessman Elon Musk for an even more insane amount – $ 44 billion. If the staggering sums invested are the common denominator between these two acquisitions, the strategies and goals pursued by their respective owners are far from identical in nature.

Acceptance Clearly Ripe Vs Whimsical?

By taking on Linkedin, Microsoft wanted to turn Yammer into a mainstream social networking stack first, even if it meant throwing Yammer out with the bathwater because it couldn’t find its audience in the first place. If the two approaches of their networks allow a subset of connections, the first is completely open to the outside, and the second is limited to internal use, which makes the main difference. But it is the monetization of accounts (the ability to access profiles that you cannot access due to the lack of connections, the ability to push sponsored profiles or posts, etc.), as well as the integration of Linkedin (accounts and contacts) that prompted Microsoft to reach out to the BtoB social networking giant. programs (Teams, Office, etc.).

For his part, Elon Musk did not have the same approach as Microsoft in his strategy to take over Twitter. While Microsoft has made no bones about wanting to take over Linkedin, it’s far from a whimsical multibillionaire. So we recall that after confirming that millions of fake accounts had infiltrated the network, the leaders of Tesla, SpaceX and Starlink backed down before finally changing their minds at the risk of more than $44 billion in costs. put it on the table for takeover and the specter of litigation initiated by the shareholders and leaders of Bluebird.

A long way to make money from Twitter

Unlike Microsoft, Elon Musk does not have direct synergistic opportunities to develop Twitter: although Linkedin is increasingly integrated with various solutions of the Redmond firm’s galaxy, this is not the case for Twitter, which moves autonomously and agnostic in the market. But where Microsoft and Twitter’s strategies converge is in the profitability race. Elon Musk, who initially set his apple on a quest to relax the terms of access to Twitter in the name of “all freedoms of expression” – even if it means waving the red rag of a comeback from the front door of Donald Trump’s twitto. quickly returned to the simple principle of reality.

Namely, finding a way to restart the network for profitability. His secret weapon? Charge users $8 per month for an account certificate. With, to pass the pill, additional functions are added (longer videos…). Elon Musk’s Twitter still seems to have a long way to go to make as much money as Linkedin for Microsoft: In July 2021, the publisher announced that its social network has now surpassed $10 billion in revenue, compared to $4.5 billion for Twitter. The number of monthly active users on Twitter is estimated at 436 million compared to 850 million for Linkedin.

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