Twitter (TWTR) has tapped a former Bloomberg executive to head its live video unit as the social media network operator aims to grow that business and court more high paying advertisers.
In a tweet, the company’s chief financial officer announced the appointment of Todd Swidler, the former senior vice president of video and partnerships at the media and news company and most recently Chief Executive of ESC Games. According to a report in Recode, the new hire’s job will be to oversee the company’s aim to offer live streaming content 24/7. He’ll also be in charge of the day-to-day operations of the unit which includes Twitter’s partnerships. (See more: Twitter Is Finally Giving Advertisers What They Want)
— Anthony Noto (@anthonynoto) May 22, 2017
With social networks looking for new areas of growth, it along with Facebook (FB) and Alphabet’s (GOOG) Google are making big bets that streaming real time video content will be a way to keep users at their sites and at the same time garner more ad dollars from marketers. Earlier this month, the microblogging site operator announced it inked 12 content deals during its first-ever Digital Content NewFronts presentation, the digital content conference put on by the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB).
The more notable content deals are with the Women’s National Basketball Association, BuzzFeed, Bloomberg News, The Verge and Live Nation. With the Bloomberg partnership it will debut a 24/7 breaking-news network that will be global, live and exclusive. The network will launch in the fall. In the case of the WNBA, Twitter started streaming a weekly regular season game amounting to 20 games per season. The deal lasts through the 2019 season. Tech website The Verge is creating a gadget show for the microblogging website that will air weekly starting this fall. The show is focused on reviewing and experimenting with the latest and greatest in the world of gadgets. BuzzFeed is creating “MorningFeed,” a morning news and current events show. (See more: Twitter Surge: User Growth Upends Street Views)
The company’s push into live video is being headed up by Noto, who Swidler will report to, according to Recode. For about a year now the executive has been calling for a live content strategy. In a recent interview with BuzzFeed, the CFO, who also serves as chief operating officer, said real time news and shows not only increases its conversation volume but it enables it to offer advertisers the type of features they will pay up for on TV networks. “We will definitely have 24/7 content on Twitter,” Noto said at the time “Our goal is to be a dependable place so that when you want to see what’s happening, you think of going to Twitter.”