How long before Promoted Tweets “disappear”?

It was only a matter of time before Twitter buckled and allowed advertising on its site. Now that it’s happened, the killer question is will ads work on a site built around dialogue and blogging?

Without question, Twitter is a successful model for social conversation. While it isn’t face-to-face, the fact that Twitter users tweet about 50 million times a day or 600 times a second is proof that there is demand for micro-blogging.

But is this micro-blogging formula right for placing adverts around? It’s worth noting that Facebook moved away from simply showcasing blogs to building a whole new format devoted to engagement in order for it to make profit.

Instead of just simply having a “Google-like” search advertising formula, it offered brands the opportunities to experiment with games, competitions, polls, sampling, voucher codes and so on.

That formula has helped them build confidence in the advertising world and become a serious business model.

Twitter though has preferred to use the text-based search advertising format that business-focused social media site LinkedIn revolves around. Co-founder Biz Stone says they are not traditional adverts, but Tweets that “resonate with users” and be part of conversations.

Dubbed Promoted Tweets, they are “ordinary Tweets that businesses and organisations want to highlight to a wider group of users” and which only appear in search results.

Stone says that if users do not interact with Promoted Tweets by replying to them, “favouriting” them or retweeting them, they would “disappear”.

It’s a risky format, and one that I simply am not sure will prove successful for the site. Why? Well I’ve spoken to many companies who would prefer to use their own Twitter pages to promote their causes than invest in the Promoted Tweets concept. It’s more personal, more interactive and it’s great customer service.

Without the engagement advertising potential, I just don’t think there is enough appeal in making Twitter a place to advertise.

Meanwhile, the more techie-oriented people in the industry have been playing with the slightly more tempting iAd update, made available by Apple last week.

Excitement and buzz are the vibes I’m picking up from these companies, as multi-tasking on an Apple becomes a reality at last.

With apps becoming an almost everyday news experience, I forsee iAd becoming a force of nature in the mobile marketing world and look forward to seeing what becomes of it.

It’s just a shame therefore that the UK will have to wait a whole month more before we can get our hands on the iPad!


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