The role Social Media plays in an overarching marketing strategy continues to change and evolve as consumer behavior adjusts to new technologies. As a Denver-based advertising agency and leisure marketing specialists, the media department here at CCT Advertising has been monitoring these changes with interest for our clients advertising leisure and lifestyle brands. While companies foster fan pages, develop apps, investigate gaming applications and consistently engage audiences through tweets, until recently direct results from many of those interactions were mixed and difficult to track. However, Twitter recently redesigned their model with advertising in mind making tweets more clickable and more measureable and adding ‘Promoted Tweets’ that could further change the landscape for social media advertisers.
Twitter first introduced advertising in April which allows companies to pay to have their sponsored messages appear at the top of users’ searches. In much the same way that PPC Text ads are purchased on Google and other search engines, Promoted Tweets allow advertisers to purchase keywords and select tweets that will appear on top of Twitter Search results for their purchased words. According to company co-founder Biz Sonte, these tweets are clearly labeled as “promoted” but otherwise exist as regular Tweets.
Last week, Twitter announced that they are updating their service to allow advertisers to serve Promoted Tweets based on the people and brands Twitter users are following. Twitter product manager Shiva Rajaraman announced, “…the basic goal is to build out interests based on who you’re following ….”
But, COO Dick Costello says the company plans to move very cautiously into the advertising arena. Instead of following the Google model and focusing on a multitude of small advertisers, Twitter plans to work with roughly 100 top brands this year.
Of course, other opportunities also exist to reach the Twitter audience. “Sponsored Tweets” are available via paid endorsements from a variety of companies offering high profile celebrities and bloggers with huge numbers of followers. Each of these services allows the advertiser to connect directly with influential tweeters to create sponsored conversations through Twitter reaching thousands of followers with their 140-character message. These tweets are even trackable and targetable down to the zip code level.
But, the newly upgraded “Promoted Tweets” announced by Twitter are definitely an interesting development and one that CCT Advertising will continue to follow. The more targeted and relevant an advertising message is the more effective it will be and the less it will be viewed as unwanted clutter.