Five Predictions for Twitter in ’10

After an ultra-impressive 2009, what’s in store for Twitter in 2010? Here are a few predictions:

1. After much anticipation and too much talk by Biz Stone and Ev Williams, Twitter will finally launch premium services aimed at corporate customers. At the core of Twitter’s services will be analytics as Twitter capitalizes on the mountain of data it collects. This will let companies slice and dice this data to determine the key conversations, where they’re happening, and the leading influencers. Meanwhile, rivals such as Yammer will continue to thrive in the enterprise market – a market that Twitter should be all over.

2. Twitter’s business model will also be bolstered by its acceptance – after much resistance – to advertising. The market for relevant and contextual advertising has too much revenue potential, particularly as real-time provides advertisers with the ability to reach consumers with the right offer at the right time at the right place.

3. Twitter will also launch more free services – a move that will put it in direction competition with many third-party developers who have created popular applications based on the Twitter API. Lists and Conversations are probably the tip of the iceberg.

4. Twitter will make a series of strategic acquisitions that will consume little of its venture capital booty. The top candidates include Tweetdeck and Seesmic (it’s difficult to believe Twitter will stand idly by as traffic to Twitter.com continues to decline). Other targets are TwitPic (posting photos in updates), Bit.ly (although there will likely be other suitors for the URL shortener) and Topify (which would be a good move given Twitter’s terrible notification service for new followers).

5. Twitter’s user base will continue to expand but overall growth will obviously be far less robust than 2009, which saw Twitter go from zero to 60. At this point, it appears that Twitter does not have the widespread appeal enjoyed by Facebook. That said, Twitter will continue to be one of the most popular social media tools.

So, what are your predictions? What do you think Twitter will do in 2010?

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