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Twitter has struck a deal with Google to show tweets in search results, as the messaging platform tries to broaden its reach beyond its 284m monthly active users.
The home of the 140-character message, which is set to report full-year earnings on Thursday, has signed an agreement with the search engine company, according to people familiar with the matter.
People will now be able to view tweets rather than just profiles of Twitter users when they search on Google, the internet company with the largest audience in the US, according to data from ComScore.
Google and Twitter had a similar deal from 2009 to 2011 but it has since lapsed, and Twitter had an agreement to provide data from tweets to Microsoft’s Bing search service.
The deal comes as Twitter prepares to reveal the latest statistics on the size of its userbase to Wall Street, which has been disappointed by slowing user growth, sending the stock down 37 per cent in the past year. Twitter’s userbase is overshadowed by the 1.4bn users on Facebook and the 300m onFacebook-owned Instagram.
Dick Costolo, Twitter’s chief executive, is under pressure to prove that the platform can have the kind of reach that marketers long for and become a real rival to Google and Facebook which dominate the online advertising market.
He has been stressing that Twitter’s audience stretches far beyond the monthly active user base, which is growing at about 5 per cent quarter on quarter, to include people who view tweets but never log in and those who see tweets in other apps and even on TV.
This week, Twitter announced that it had formed its first partnerships to show its advertisements — known as promoted tweets — on other apps, teaming up with news aggregator Flipboard and Yahoo Japan. In that announcement, it said that about 185bn tweets were seen outside Twitter in the third quarter of 2014.
It is not known whether the Google deal will include showing promoted tweets alongside Google’s own advertisements.
Twitter has also been trying to boost its revenue stream from Twitter data, by buying Gnip, a Twitter firehose provider, last year. It struck a deal with IBM in October to apply data from the network to real-time business decisions for IBM’s enterprise customers.
The company is expected to report earnings per share of 6 cents for the fourth quarter and 10 cents for 2014, according to the average analyst estimate, and revenue of $450m for the quarter and $1.4bn for the year, when it announces its earnings this week.