Twitter Ads: #Winning?

Posted: December 29, 2011 in Advertising, Social Media, Twitter

2011 saw one of Twitter’s boldest moves to date as it introduced the beta advertising program to a select number of companies willing to test it out.

Twitter has naturally been very cautious in keeping a tight control over how this rolls out in order to prevent any negative consumer reaction and, as such, have limited access to a select number of brands this year. Over the past few months I secured participation in the beta testing program on behalf of a world-leading digital advertising company, allowing us to take advantage of Promoted Accounts and Promoted Tweets. The third area that is currently available for promotion is that of ‘Promoted Trends’, typically being deployed by brands releasing films, video games and other one-off products that can warrant the $100K+ cost-per-day basis.

Through running a series of tester campaigns, I’ve had the opportunity to try out some of the following Promoted Account and Tweet campaigns:

Promoted Account campaigns that:

–       Gave visibility to the followers of competitor brands.

–       Targeted the followers of relevant industry journalists, bloggers and analysts.

–       Positioned the brand in front of those searching for relevant keywords typical in our industry.

Promoted Tweets that:

–       Would be viewed by the brand’s followers, regardless of when they might be viewing Twitter content.

–       Shared positive endorsement of the brand in front of users who we know might be searching for or following our competitors.

–       Were targeted to particular countries using local language for maximum effect.

With reported engagement rates of up to 11% by some, I’m pleased to say that I’ve seen rates slightly north of this for some of our Promoted Tweet campaigns and follow rates of up to ten times the suggested average for the Promoted Account campaigns. There are plenty of case studies on Twitter’s blog here that make for encouraging reading too.

So, what of the consumer reaction to these types of promoted content? A recent Lab42 study showed some interesting results.  48% of respondents indicated that they had seen a promoted Tweet from a brand they consider relevant to them, and 42% have received discounted offers via promoted Tweets. Compare these figures with the 21% of US users who suggest that Promoted Tweets are “annoying and take away from the Twitter experience” and you have a fairly good indication that Twitter is close to getting it right.

As we head into 2012 I fully expect to see more promoted activity and higher levels of creativity around how campaigns are being executed by brands. Looking to maximise your brand on Twitter, drive new followers and improve your content? Get in touch. You can also register your interest in using the promoted products here.

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