The “Certified Product Programe” is similar to Facebook’s “Preferred Marketing Developer” initiative, which aims to make it easier for marketers to track down the best partners that use its ecosystem for marketing and analytics services.
Twitter says on its developer blog that its programme certifies “leading solutions” on its ecosystem that have been developed for the needs of publishers, brands and partners to help them solve their business needs and “flourish” on the platform.
It has handed Certified Products badges to 12 companies so far, including HootSuite, Radian6, ExactTarget and Topsy.
Notable absences from the list include popular Twitter clients such as Echofon, Tweetbot and Seesmic and other services that use its data such as social TV app Zeebox.
Applications to join the programme are currently open. Companies can apply to feature in one or more of the programme’s key verticals: engagement, analytics and data resellers.
Twitter has set out requirements for partner companies, which include the need to bring Twitter to new or underserved markets; making Twitter more valuable to businesses and solve a need that Twitter does not address; and using Twitter platform products for new innovations rather than just creating products that mimic the existing service.
Earlier this month Twitter announced a move to clamp down on developers that use its API to create their own consumer facing Twitter clients. By doing so Twitter will have more data on how users are interacting with its service in order to improve the product and enhance targeting options for advertisers.
Separately, today (30 August) Twitter has also announced it will allow advertisers to target users with Promoted Tweets and Promoted Accounts by their interests, based on the accounts they follow, what they tweet and what lists they are in.
Brands can target from a range of 350 interest categories, which includes home and garden and pets, as well as targeting people that have similar interests to a certain @username. For example, if a brand was looking to promote a new chocolate bar, they could target all those who follow other chocolate bars’ Twitter accounts.
Twitter is also lowering the amount advertisers can bid for Promoted Tweets and Accounts in its auction-based system to 1 cent, which it believes will drive greater ROI for every campaign on Twitter.