There’s been a lot of speculation on how Twitter would start generating revenue. Last week, speculation has become reality with the announcement of Promoted Tweets. There’s a lot of ‘buzz’ in the industry about how these promoted tweets will alter how twitterers will interact with each other and the ramifications for using Twitter for marketing.
Mashable’s Ben Parr did a great job of summarizing what Twitter CEO Evan Williams and Twitter COO Dick Costolo presented to the attendees of the Chirp conference. And there are some points I thought I’d reiterate and comment:
Twitter’s Monetization Model (And my 2 cents—for what it’s worth.)
- Promoted Tweets are still tweets – not ads. (If it looks like a duck, swims like a duck and quacks like a duck, then it probably is a duck.…Sorry, to me, these are ads – and that’s ok, everyone’s entitled to make a profit off a good idea.)
- The success of a promoted tweet will still rely on creative license, analytics, and interaction. (Agreed!)
- Promoted Tweets start with search so that the company can test it to best serve users. (Great idea – supports the whole notion of “Resonance” and “real time”)
- Resonance: “Measures multiple axes of engagement with a tweet.” For instance – the system will measure all the different ways people engage with tweets: measures reuse of hashtags, clicks on avatar, clicks on shortened links, retweets, favorites, influence of retweeters, etc. While they won’t publish the algorithms, they will provide advertisers with scores to fine-tune PTs. (Sounds fair. Like all social media, it’s a work in progress.)
- After Twitter feels like it has a sense of how this works, it will roll it out beyond search. (No surprise here. Geo-location will probably be huge for advertisers.)
- Revenue share: 50/50 between developers and Twitter, after costs are deducted. (A nice win-win for developers.)
I’m eager to keep an eye out for the successes of Starbucks (and others) and will begin mapping out my own ‘PT Strategy.’
On another Twitter note I found interesting was the revelation at the Chrip conference about ‘Twitter published stats’ from Biz Stone:
- Twitter maintains a user base of over 105 million.
- Twitter.com receives over 180 million monthly unique visitors with 75% of Twitter traffic sourcing from outside applications.
- Currently, Twitter is adding 300,000 new users daily, experiencing 1,500% growth over last year.
- While still far behind Google and even YouTube, Twitter is fielding over 600 million search queries with 3 billion calls to its application program interface (API) per day.
While I haven’t been able to read all of the blog articles about the Chirp Developer Conference Announcements, I found one very eloquent paragraph written by Brian Solis in his article “The State and Future of Twitter 2010” that really made me pause to reflect on the significance of Twitter and it’s constant re-evolution of the way we communicate and share :
“The Twitterverse represents much more than a social network. It personified our aspirations, giving millions of people a stage for which to earn untapped recognition. Whereas YouTube inspired so many individuals willing to brave the lens of a Web cam and the resulting activities that ensured from friends and strangers online and in the real world, Twitter gifted a microphone, a stage, and a captive audience to those who could enchant our heats, minds, and attention in 140 character proclamations.”
The power of Twitter lies within me and you. What are your thoughts on Promoted Tweets? How are you going to map out your Promoted Tweet strategy? Please post your comments and share!