As social networking and microblogging site Twitter bids to consolidate its status as one of the web’s big guns, plans to include paid-for advertising tweets within our timelines have now been given a deadline.
Promoted tweets will appear within Twitter user’s personal feeds within the next 8 weeks, according to several sources who have been briefed on the matter.
These commercially driven, paid for tweets are not a new phenomenon, but had previously only appeared within relevant Twitter searches and on the social media dashboard Hootsuite. Now, advertisers have been told that these tweets will pop up within member’s personal streams, a massive step forward for ad campaigns within the site.
Advertisers are assured that promoted tweets are here to say, and Twitter plans to make sure that we see them. One idea is to make the paid-for tweets ‘sticky’, meaning that no matter how far we scroll down, these pesky ads will stay at the top of the page.
Users of the Twitter iPhone app will already be familiar with this sort of intrusive advertisement. The iPhone app’s unpopular Quick Bar stuck to the top of the Twitter user’s display screen and earned itself the less than affectionate nickname Dick Bar (in honour of CEO Dick Costello).
Twitter clearly thinks that the Quick Bar technique will seem less intrusive on a computer screen and, given the amount of advertisements already cluttering the average web page, they’re probably right.
The social media giant certainly seems desperate to move forward with the idea. And why wouldn’t they? If the plan comes together, Twitter will expose us to a wealth of lucrative advertising without suffering a major backlash; and improving their already impressive returns – Twitter is expected to gross a whopping $100 million this year.
But will the promoted tweet pay off? Will advertisers see the profit in the scheme and give Twitter the sort of advertising pulling power that Facebook enjoys? We don’t know the answers yet. But what we do know for sure is that promoted tweets are coming to Twitter, they’re coming very soon, and they won’t be going anywhere in a hurry.