Should you pay for Twitter Blue?

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· 4 min read

Another day, another massive change on Twitter. After a silly initial launch, Twitter Blue is back, giving everyone the chance to buy the blue checkmark. Let’s get into it and talk about whether you or your brands should pay for Twitter Blue.

What is Twitter Blue?

It’s so hard to keep track of what features Twitter’s tossed in the Blue bucket. We’ve watched three different iterations over the last three months, and even this new one lists certain features, like 50% less ads and prioritized replies, as “coming soon.” But Twitter has already laid out some of the product; let’s take a look:

From Twitter:

“Twitter Blue is an opt-in, paid subscription that adds a blue checkmark to your account and offers early access to select features, like Edit Tweet. Subscribe now on web for $8/month or iOS for $11/month to get the blue checkmark in addition to early access to features. All Twitter Blue features will be available immediately except the blue checkmark, which may take time to appear to ensure review of subscribed accounts meet all requirements.”

So, the blue checkmark + a buffet of other knickknacks. Twitter’s handy promo image outlines the full list for ya:


What’s in a blue checkmark?

Make no mistake: The core value here is still the blue checkmark. Twitter’s trading off the exclusivity it built from the verified badge’s introduction in 2009, hoping you’ll pay to join the cool kids club. The new version of Blue uses phone numbers to verify identity in an attempt to ensure everyone’s who they claim to be this time around.

That means yes: The blue checkmark once again designates a verified account. That matters.

Should your brand pay for Twitter Blue?

Yep. Brands should pay for Twitter Blue, if only for the verification.

If I’m gonna chat with a company on Twitter, I wanna know that it’s the actual company. Verification helps that. The $96/year is a nominal fee to make sure your Twitter comms feel buttoned up.

A few of the extra doo-dads have some brand value as well: 1080p video uploads are unlocked when you buy Twitter Blue—your creative director’s gonna be quite pleased to see that pretty video tweeted in full HD. While it hasn’t launched yet, Twitter Blue also teases that tweets from verified users will be “prioritized” and “rocket to the top of replies, mentions and search”—that’s gonna be pretty helpful when a follower asks a question, and your company’s reply will theoretically show up first or be highlighted in some way. When a potential consumer searches a keyword your brand has tweeted, supposedly verified accounts will be prioritized in those searches. We won’t know exactly what that will look like until the feature drops, but those are undoubtedly valuable benefits.

A Social Media Newsletter by Jack Appleby

Let’s not even analyze the cost of Twitter Blue for brands—I promise your company is paying for much dumber and more expensive services. If your company views < $100/year as costly, I’ve got questions about the company’s viability. I like this take from AdQuick VP of Marketing Adam Singer:

Adam Singer / Twitter

And hey, brands? Just because your new Twitter Blue subscription allows you to post longer videos doesn’t mean you should.

Should you pay for Twitter Blue on your personal account?

No. I’ve never understood why your average tweeter would pay for Twitter Blue.

Twitter is free. So are Instagram, Facebook, TikTok, and the other big social networks. Not one of Twitter Blue’s features make Twitter better for the casual Twitter user, nor make Twitter any better than other free social networks. Your experience won’t change.

Now, if you tweet for the sake of your career or aspire to launch a personal brand? I can see the value. Plenty of sales reps roam Twitter in search of clients—adding a blue checkmark to a profile could give an ~official~ feeling on their profiles, making potential customers feel like they’re in good hands. That sounds like an expensable value add to me.

As for me? I just paid for Twitter Blue. As a creator + new biz rep for myself, I see some benefits worth toying around with. Again, though—Twitter is legitimately part of my job. It’s an income stream for me. If I was just casually tweeting about the Clippers or the new Rian Johnson movie, I certainly wouldn’t spend $8/month that could be going towards watching Ted Lasso on Apple+.

A Social Media Newsletter by Jack Appleby