Beyoncé isn't going to save Twitter

Twitter lands NFL deal to live stream Thursday Night Football
Twitter lands NFL deal to live stream Thursday Night Football

Here's the painful reality for Twitter as the company prepares to release its latest earnings report on Tuesday.

It doesn't matter how many times people tweeted about Beyoncé's surprise new album this past weekend. Wall Street seems to think that you can't simply take lemons and turn them into "Lemonade."

Despite a (Sasha?) fierce rally for both Twitter and the overall market since mid-February, shares of Twitter (TWTR) are still down more than 25% this year due to concerns about sluggish growth in its user base.

Shares of Facebook (FB), which Twitter (fairly or not) is inevitably compared to, are up 5%.

Related: Twitter surges on yet another takeover rumor

Investors just aren't buying the notion that Twitter can be a viable social network. That's probably why rumors of a Twitter takeover continue to occasionally pop up -- and then quickly fade away.

And Twitter isn't the only social company that's fallen on hard times.

LinkedIn (LNKD)shares have plunged nearly 50% in 2016. Even the valuation of private upstart Snapchat took a hit late last year.

Twitter's stock has continued to plunge despite the fact that the company is expected to post a solid increase in sales and earnings for this quarter and the full year.

But Twitter needs to prove to investors that it can get its monthly active user base growing again. Without that, there will be continued doubts about its future.

Investors may also be concerned that Jack Dorsey -- who returned to the top spot in October -- has too much on his plate. After all, he still runs mobile payments startup Square (SQ) -- which went public last year.

Still, there are hopes that the company's recent deal with the NFL could be a financial touchdown for the company. Twitter won the rights to digitally stream 10 of the NFL's Thursday night games this season.

Related: Twitter to live stream Thursday Night Football games

Some analysts are optimistic that Twitter could further deepen its partnership with the cash cow that is the NFL. After all, Twitter CFO Anthony Noto was formerly the CFO of the NFL.

But it may take many more deals to prove to Wall Street that Twitter, which also owns live-streaming app Periscope, can be a legitimate force in the video world.

Facebook is becoming a bigger player in video as well. It also has a lot more clout thanks to its monthly active user base of about 1.59 billion -- nearly five times that of Twitter.

Twitter, to be brutally honest, remains a niche company compared to Facebook. Sure, 320 million users is a pretty big niche. But it seems like Madison Avenue and Wall Street don't see it that way.

That's why Twitter must do more to prove that it's not just a place for celebrities and their fans (earth to members of the BeyHive: Rachel Roy is not Rachael Ray) to fire off snarky 140 character insults about other celebrities with whom they are feuding.

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