Twitter will alter its advertising strategies in a bid to encourage more businesses to market themselves through the microblogging network.
Advertisers will now be able to select from 350 different areas of interest in order to help their Twitter advertisements reach the most relevant audience. These areas include types of law, government and politics information, music, movies, television, various sports, style and science information and many more.
Twitter users will then be selected as the target audience for these companies’ advertisements. They will be chosen based upon who they follow, the contents of their previous tweets and their other actions whilst on the site. This formula is similar to that employed by rival social networking site Facebook.
Like Facebook, Twitter seeks to justify its advertising opportunities to potential ad space buyers, and believes that its strategies will pay more dividends than the classifications by which Facebook demographics are selected. These include geographic area, age and marital status.
Kevin Weil, director of product management at Twitter, wrote in a blog post that "By targeting people's topical interests, you will be able to connect with a greater number of users and deliver tailored messages to people who are more likely to engage with your Tweets.
"When people discover offers and messages about the things they care about on Twitter, it's good for both marketers and users."
The change follows other recent alterations to improve the site’s business strategies. Recently Twitter recently changed guidelines to restrict the creation of third-party Twitter-based application. App’s which seek to serve more than 100,000 users must now seek the permission of Twitter to so.
The move has been met with criticism by commentators who say that it will stifle creativity in the development of great third party products.