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Can Twitter Help Studios Boost Box Office Sales?

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Nov. 20 2020, Updated 12:40 p.m. ET

A link between tweets and movie revenues?

A recent study seems to suggest that Twitter’s (TWTR) social media platform could be a powerful tool for marketing and gauging public interest in new movie releases. The study by Emerson College (cited by TheWrap) showed an interesting correlation between sentiments expressed in Twitter posts and movie sales.

Some 12,000 tweets picked from a selection of 800,000 tweets with hashtags related to movies were examined in the study. The survey focused on movies released in fall of 2016. To avoid skewed results, the films selected for the study didn’t include holiday-themed titles.

Notably, Twitter had 217 million monthly users at the end of 3Q16.

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Studios could leverage Twitter’s power to drive box office revenue

Based on the study’s results, it seems that movie companies such as Walt Disney (DIS), Time Warner (TWX), and Twenty-First Century Fox (FOXA) could leverage Twitter’s power in spreading word of mouth to promote their films. Netflix (NFLX) and Amazon.com (AMZN), which are also creating original films to boost the appeal of their video streaming services, could also find a useful marketing tool in Twitter.

As for Twitter, the study outcome appears to show that the company can successfully pitch to studios to spend their marketing funds on its platform. But Twitter has struggled to draw advertisers to its platform amid stiff competition from Facebook (FB), Alphabet’s (GOOGL) Google, Yelp (YELP), and Snapchat. Stalling subscriber growth has been one of Twitter’s major drawbacks.

Meanwhile, to compete with Twitter’s live video streaming service, Periscope, Facebook has recently stepped up its campaign for digital video ad spending, partnering with publishers like the New York Times (NYT) to produce and publish live video content for its Facebook Live feature.

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