Twitter pulled its first-quarter revenue outlook and forecast an operating loss on Monday as the coronavirus outbreak crimped ad sales, but said the pandemic boosted the number of active users on the microblogging platform. The outbreak has made social media services such as Twitter vital for a broader population than usual, as people look to stay abreast of the latest news from authorities and keep in touch with friends virtually.
But many advertisers have pulled marketing budgets to rein in costs because of the virus-related uncertainty, and others are hesitant to advertise alongside coronavirus discussions for fear of associating their brands with the sensitive topic.
“The COVID-19 impact began in Asia, and as it unfolded into a global pandemic, it has impacted Twitter’s advertising revenue globally more significantly in the last few weeks,” Chief Financial Officer Ned Segal said in a statement.
Twitter is the first major ad-supported US platform