Twitter reports its Q2 earnings tomorrow afternoon, which means investors will be judging whether Dick Costolo has fixed his growth problem.
One thing they won’t see or hear about, though, will be a new set of metrics from Twitter describing the company’s reach and scale.
While Twitter has had internal discussions about new ways of measuring the service, whose growth numbers have been a problem since it went public, people familiar with the company say it won’t offer up those numbers on Tuesday.
That said, Costolo will still likely want to talk about Twitter’s reach beyond its core user base, last measured at 255 million. Last quarter, for example, he played up the impact of Ellen Degeneres’s famous Oscar selfie during his earnings call. The World Cup seems like an obvious topic for him to touch on Tuesday.
In the meantime, investors will have to rely on the metrics they’ve already been using to gauge Twitter’s performance: Money and monthly active users.
Wall Street expects Twitter to lose a penny per share on revenue of $283 million. There doesn’t seem to be a formal number for monthly user numbers, but the estimates I’ve seen range from 263 million to 269 million.
Anything substantially below or above those user numbers is much more likely to move the stock than its basic financials, which Wall Street has been just fine with. Then again, those numbers will eventually have an impact on Twitter’s ad business, too — unless Twitter can rethink it.
Facebook, for reference, ended its blockbuster Q2 with 1.3 billion monthly users — and nearly $3 billion in ad revenue.
Here’s RBC analyst Mark Mahaney’s cheat sheet for tomorrow: