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Advertisers on Twitter Quadruple in 2011


Twitter may be the new kid on the block when it comes to advertising, but that hasn’t dampened the enthusiasm of marketers for the 140-character micro-blogging service. Since the first of this year, the number of advertisers partnering with Twitter to advertise through the service has quadrupled.

Twitter was nearly four years old when it opened its doors to commercial messages with its Promoted Products in April 2010, research agency eMarketer reported. By the end of the year, 150 had jumped on the bandwagon. By June of this year, that number had jumped to 600.

"Twitter offers advertisers a chance to interact with fans in real time, buy ads that look and feel like organic content on Twitter, and enhance buzzed-about events," said Kimberly Maul, eMarketer analyst and author of the new report, “Twitter Advertising: Four Marketers Test the New Ad Platform." "But some in the industry are still skeptical and, in order to make a serious impact, Twitter must scale its advertising, add new ways to reach users and work to make the experience seamless for both consumers and companies."

Something's working, since nearly 80 percent of advertisers renew their campaigns with Twitter. A typical engagement level for promoted tweets , which are ordinary tweets that advertisers want to highlight to a wider group of users, is 3 percent to 5 percent, eMarketer reported, and combined with promoted trends, that can rise to 7 percent to 10 percent.

Promoted trends are paid promotions by Twitter advertising partners that appear at the top of the Trending Topics list. Most of that engagement measure involves users clicking on the link in a tweet, driving them toward marketer content.

Some marketers, such as Volkswagen, have reported above average reports, with VW reaching an engagement rate of 52 percent for promoted tweets regarding the unveiling of the New Beetle.

Issues that advertisers need to address, eMarketer reported, include fragmentation across various clients, integration of ads into organic conversations between users and the level of brand control that is possible.

"With a growing ad platform such as Twitter, a willingness to experiment and be flexible is essential for marketers," said Maul. "Twitter advertising is a new and constantly changing arena, one that requires a mix of focused strategy and flexibility."

Savvy Businesses Should Troll for Tweets, New Study Says

Mind Your Business: Why You Should Quit Twitter Now Reach BusinessNewsDaily senior writer Ned Smith at nsmith@techmedianetwork.com. Follow him on Twitter @nedbsmith.


Ned Smith
Ned Smith

Ned was senior writer at Sweeney Vesty, an international consulting firm, and was Vice President of communications for iQuest Analytics. Before that, he has been a web editor and managed the Internet and intranet sites for Citizens Communications. He began his journalism career as a police reporter with the Roanoke (Va.) Times, and was managing editor of American Way magazine and senior editor of Us. He was a Captain in the U.S. Air Force and has a masters in journalism from the University of Arizona.