Full Details On Twitter's Long-Awaited Ad Platform: Promoted Tweets

Earlier this evening, we broke the news that Twitter was about to launch its new ad platform. The news has just been confirmed: moments ago, the New York Times published a report detailing the new platform, which is officially being called “Promoted Tweets”. Update: AdAge has published a report as well.

Here are the details outlined in the articles:

  • As we previously described, the new system serves up ads based on keywords in Twitter search queries.
  • Promoted Tweets will appear at the top of the search results page, with small text indicating they were sponsored. The Times piece notes that companies could use this to combat negative tweets (they can place a positive tweet at the top of the page)
  • A Promoted Tweet isn’t guaranteed to stay afloat for a long time — if the tweet isn’t tracking well in terms of replies, clicks, and a number of other metrics Twitter is calling “resonance”, it will be pulled, and the advertiser won’t pay for it.
  • One ad will be shown at a time
  • Initial ad partners include Best Buy, Virgin America, Starbucks, and Bravo
  • Advertisers will be paying on a CPM basis initially, with plans to adjust the model once Twitter can better gauge how people are engaging with Promoted Tweets

Both reports note that Twitter will eventually allow third party Twitter clients to integrate Promoted Tweets, with the app developer receiving a cut of the revenue.

In a move that may raise the ire of Twitter users, the articles also state that Twitter plans to eventually put ads into your Twitter stream:

In the next phase of Twitter’s revenue plan, it will show promoted posts in a user’s Twitter stream, even if a user did not perform a search and does not follow the advertiser.

For example, if someone has been writing posts about the Fourth of July, they could see a promoted post from Virgin America on holiday fare discounts.

Now would be a good time to point out some of the comments made about the upcoming ad platform by Twitter COO Dick Costolo at our RealTime CrunchUp last November:

“It will be fascinating. Non-traditional. And people will love it… It’s going to be really cool.”

Do Promoted Tweets live up to that promise? At this point, we haven’t gotten a chance to try them out for ourselves, but this is certainly more conventional than I was expecting. It also sounds a whole lot like TweetUp, the new Twitter search/ad platform that Bill Gross launched last night.

Image via AdAge