Tesla CEO Elon Musk acquired Twitter for $44 billion in 2022. Since then, he has implemented some major changes to the social media platform, including rebranding it as X, retiring the iconic bird logo and reducing its workforce by approximately 80%.
The transformation of X has met with mixed reactions, and some observers have been predicting the platform's decline, especially after Facebook and Instagram’s parent company, Meta Platforms (META), introduced a rival app named “Threads.”
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But a recent post on X highlighted that the platform was leading in traffic generation via Google’s top 100 organic search results. The post reads, “X Traffic Update! X surpasses Instagram and Facebook by a significant margin in driving traffic through Google.”
This update caught Musk’s attention, who shared the post with his commentary, “Guess we’re not dead yet,” accompanied by the tears-of-joy emoji.
Musk’s post garnered significant engagement: 39 million views and 336,000 likes were accumulated within 24 hours.
It also sparked a discussion in the replies. A notably popular reply, which received more than 4,200 likes, reads, “Meta is censorship. X is free speech. This is not difficult.”
Time to bail on Meta?
While X may be performing better than some people had anticipated, investors might not want to ignore Meta — as the company remains a behemoth in the social media industry.
Meta's third-quarter earnings report, for the period ending Sept. 30, 2023, shows Facebook had reached 3.05 billion monthly active users, a 3% increase from the previous year.
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The broader reach of Meta's family of services — including Facebook, Instagram, Messenger and WhatsApp, among others — amassed a whopping 3.96 billion monthly active users as of the end of Q3, marking 7% growth year over year. This figure represents approximately half of the global population.
Meta has also seen improvements in user monetization. In Q3, Facebook's average revenue per user (ARPU) rose to $11.23, up from $9.41 in the same quarter the previous year.
The company's total revenue in Q3 grew by 23% year over year, reaching $34.15 billion. Net income came in at $11.58 billion, or $4.39 per share.
Meta’s stock has also shown remarkable growth, soaring 170% year to date. JPMorgan analyst Doug Anmuth sees further upside on the horizon. The analyst has an "Overweight" rating on Meta and a price target of $400 — roughly 18% above the current levels.
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