Brace yourself for Twitter ads

2 Nov

Ever since Twitter introduced their new interface in September, there has been widespread speculation – you may even have heard it here – that the new design was created to allow Twitter to sell advertising space on the right hand side.

That’s the dinner bell you’re hearing now.

Yesterday Twitter gave notice that they would indeed begin testing “intuitive” advertising for users of HootSuite.

By intuitive, they mean that the ads will closely match the content of your tweets, which sounds spooky, if not downright stalker-like.

But that’s where all this has been headed for some time. It’s good news for advertisers who can now target their messages like never before.

It remains to be seen if the value for Twitter users is as apparent.

In other news, Twitter now has 165 million users worldwide. Advertisers, please line up in an orderly fashion to the right.

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7 Responses to “Brace yourself for Twitter ads”

  1. Mario Parise November 2, 2010 at 9:38 am #

    People have long accepted that in order to get our media for free, advertising was the cost. We don’t pay a fraction of the actual cost for news, radio, cable TV…

    Why should it be different online?

    Twitter has real costs. The fact that so many people use it tells us it provides real value. They deserve to earn revenue for that. Since no one would PAY to use Twitter, ads are the only real option. (Creepier: Selling data mining services for consumer insights. Maybe they’ll do that, too.)

    I don’t see the big deal. The Web is driven by advertising dollars. Search engines, most blogs, most online video, most games, most apps, social networks… virtually anything you can find online is made free through advertising dollars.

    My prediction: People will soon forget that there was ever a time when Twitter was advertisement-free.

    • dougbrowncreative November 2, 2010 at 10:57 am #

      Nice to have your comment Mario. I don’t disagree at all with your prediction. Twitter will go the way of Facebook. Unfortunately for the advertisers, the ads will probably fall into consumers blind spots. Their way of going about it was quite disappointing from an innovation standpoint.
      BTW, I’ve heard that Twitter is already selling to data mining services.

  2. Chris Burdge November 2, 2010 at 3:54 pm #

    I agree with Mario. And in fact “Promoted Tweets”, another revenue generator (form of advertising) area already showing up in Hootsuite. Not sure why they’re not appearing in the Twitter interface yet. The ones I’m getting appear to be targeted as they have been relevant to me.

    Such is life in the new social world…

  3. dougbrowncreative November 2, 2010 at 3:58 pm #

    They are only showing up in HootSuite Chris because HS is the guinea pig. Promoted tweets are the opening bunt. They will be swinging for the fences in Twitter before long. ;P

  4. Allovernews November 2, 2010 at 9:33 pm #

    My friend nothing is free forever Advertising truly is everywhere. You simply can not escape it I hope you know this is what it’s about and it’s the ads that keep most newspaper magazines and website running at the end of the day it’s all about money.

  5. Eden November 3, 2010 at 3:21 am #

    If I’m not mistaken, Facebook and GMail also use a kind of “intuitive” advertising. Considering our Facebook pages likely have more dirt on us than our Twitter pages (remember back when we thought we could delete that picture and it would disappear forever? Hah), it’s shouldn’t be overly concerning.
    Plus, I think users have begun to realize that there’s no anonymity on the Internet… But I have to say, I ignore the ads on Facebook and I’ll likely ignore the ads on Twitter (unless they can find a way to make me pay attention; their challenge should they choose to accept it).

  6. dougbrowncreative November 6, 2010 at 8:33 am #

    They sure do Eden. Advertisers are banking on the relevancy of the message breaking through. Check out the next post to see the Proactiv example of how far this can go.

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