Photo: photogramma1 via Flickr
Twitter has a huge advertising business, but because the company is private there is very little data as to how big its client base is, who spends money on Twitter, or how effective that advertising is.We don’t even know how big Twitter’s ad sales are, although eMarketer puts it at $545.2 million this year.
But TBG Digital, a company that buys promoted tweets on the microblog network, just released some data on the relative effectiveness of Twitter’s various ad formats.
Advertisers can buy promoted trends (#hashtag topics that are listed as “trending” on Twitter simply because advertisers pay to have them listed as such) and promoted tweets (individual tweets that are highlighted).
Promoted tweets come in two sub-formats: Tweets that appear in your Twitter feed even if you don’t follow the brand; and tweets that are paid to appear in response to search requests on Twitter.
The interesting thing about promoted tweets is that they’re sold on a cost-per-engagement basis, meaning advertisers only pay when a user replies to, clicks or favourites the tweet, according to TBG.
The result is that promoted tweets in search are far more effective than promoted tweets in your timeline feed, because they are triggered by the topic the user is attempting to find. Here’s TBG’s comparison:
Photo: TBG Digital
Although this data is based on 25 million impressions served, the weakness here is that it’s presented in percentages and not actual numbers, so we still don’t have good information about ad pricing on Twitter.
Nonetheless, it suggests that advertisers are better off responding to search queries on Twitter rather than inserting their tweets into users’ timelines unbidden.
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