The Musk Effect Wanes: Engagement with Elon Musk's Tweets Takes a Hit

In a surprising turn of events, Twitter users seem to be paying less attention to the tweets of none other than Elon Musk himself. Despite the increasing volume of Musk's tweets, engagement with his original posts has experienced a noticeable decline. Since taking over the platform as its owner approximately seven months ago, Musk's influence seems to be waning among Twitter users.

Based on the findings of a recent analysis by Huge (via Business Insider), a tech-focused consulting and growth company, it has been observed that there has been a significant decrease in the level of engagement with Elon Musk's tweets. In late October since its peak there has been a noticeable downward trend in engagement and the subsequent weeks following Musk's official acquisition of the platform.

During this period, Musk has brought about significant changes to Twitter's operations and functionality. Layoffs have been widespread, resulting in occasional failures and frequent glitches within the platform and its features. He has also introduced a paid verification process, reserved previously for reliable sources and notable figures, aiming to boost revenue. These decisions have led to a decline in advertising revenue, the core of Twitter's business, while his favoritism towards alt-right political leaders and influencers has added to the platform's challenges.

Notwithstanding these advancements, the original tweets by Musk still manage to attract a noteworthy level of engagement, with an average of approximately 5 M interactions per week. However, it is important to note that this figure only reflects a marginal increase compared to the level of engagement he achieved prior to his association with Twitter last year. In the past, Musk's tweets garnered between 1 M and 3 M interactions on a weekly basis.

The revelation of Elon Musk quietly amassing a shareholder stake in Twitter, as disclosed in a financial statement, triggered a significant surge in user engagement. The unfolding saga between Musk and Twitter in April and March intensified, ultimately resulting in a high-priced acquisition. During this period, Musk experienced an explosive increase in engagement on the platform, with his tweets attracting over 20 M interactions per week.

The peaked engagement quickly declined to around 5 M interactions per week, as revealed by the Huge analysis. Throughout Musk's acquisition attempts and legal battles, engagement remained relatively low, sometimes dipping to 1 M interactions per week. However, after becoming the owner of Twitter, Musk's engagement heightened again, with tweets often garnering over 10 M interactions each week up till early 2023.

Although there have been intermittent increases in Musk's tweets engagement throughout this year, the general pattern indicates a decline. This decline is particularly noteworthy considering Musk's increased tweet frequency. According to Huge's findings, Musk's tweeting has increased by 10 percent each month. Previously, he averaged around 7 original tweets per week, but that number has now risen to approximately 21 per week, representing a significant 200 percent increase.

Interestingly, the surge in Musk's tweet volume has diluted the impact on engagement, resulting in "no significant difference in Elon Musk's engagement per original tweet between the period of acquisition and post-acquisition," as noted by Huge.

As Twitter users continue to show less interest in Elon Musk's tweets, the decline in engagement poses a challenge for the billionaire owner of the platform. Despite his increased presence on Twitter, it appears that users are becoming less captivated by his posts. Only time will tell if Musk can reverse this trend and recapture the attention of the Twitterverse.

Read next: Is Twitter On The Verge Of Its Own Destruction? Top Investment Firm Thinks So
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