All things promoted!

Maybe its too early to judge, but as of now promoted tweets sounds like a good idea! For the uninitiated, promoted tweets is an advertising program of twitter which will enable brands to place ads within the twitter stream, but firstly it will start with searching for tweets. I’m sure most of the twitter fan boys must have got excited when they announced this development on their blog yesterday. Most importantly from a business perspective this is a landmark achievement for @ev, @biz, @dickc for finally figuring out a way to monetize the medium. They had to look at advertising as a revenue stream. They never had a choice. But the manner in which they have figured this out is commendable. Like they have mentioned in their blog, “slow and thoughtful approach to monetization —one which puts users first, amplifies existing value, and generates profit has frustrated some Twitter watchers”.

Why is promoted tweets good?

(a) User friendly and Contextual: Promoted tweets will start with search. They don’t plan to spam your timeline with ads just because you are used to watching IPL matches between TVCs! If a user is searching for something using a particular keyword which the advertiser has bought, the user will have a good chance to see a promoted tweet.

(b) Resonance: I love this word. What action a user takes after seeing a promoted tweet will determine the success / failure of a promoted tweet. So as a user if you see a promoted tweet and don’t interact with it (like a retweet, reply or favorite), the tweet will disappear from the search results. Do we smell Google Adwords here? This will clearly force the advertisers to (i) work hard on their offers and (ii) put up only relevant and interesting ads. Trust me in a real-time environment the ads will have to work doubly hard unlike the standard search ads because reactions and response from the users will be quick.

(c) It offers a whole new different area for engagement – Does it mean that advertisers who jump on to the promoted tweets platform will have to compromise on their regular engagement plan? No. The beauty about twitter is that while brands may to continue to engage with users in a regular manner, promoted tweets offers brand a totally new area for engagement.

(d) A new area of expertise: Does this also contribute to a whole new area of expertise titled ‘Social Search’? If you have used Google Social Search, you will get a fair idea of this.

Now lets look at the other side. Why you may not like promoted tweets?

(a) A stranger in my timeline: If the new model does well on search, the next step for twitter is to place the ad in the user’s timeline. No wonder they bought Tweetie. Twitter will need to have some kind of control over third party applications. But little did we knew that this is all part of a good plan. And most of us don’t want to see a stranger in our timeline interacting with us. Results are already proving that lots of people are unhappy with Twitter’s new move. But then, historically change has always met with resistance first. Rest only time will tell

(b) This stranger can spam too: This is another concern.

As of now.. lets wait and watch how the the entire model unfolds. What are your initial reactions?


~ by rb on April 14, 2010.

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