Small to medium-sized business are about to get a leg-up in the Twitter department as Twitter has announced that it will begin self-serve advertising starting in late March. Twitter advertising up until now had to be done through a sales representative. The new advertising service will allow users to buy advertising in a way similar to Facebook Ads and Google AdWords.
The service is currently only open to the first 10,000 small and mid-size business owners with an American Express card that sign up, and each of those will receive a $100 ad credit from American Express. Whereas it is limited to the first 10,000 businesses,, Twitter is expected to let in more people as time goes on. Twitter has been easing into advertising to ensure the commercial messages don’t spoil the ambiance of of Twitter, which I likened unto the world’s largest cocktail party.
If you’re not too late, you can sign up to be one of these 10,000 by signing up on Twitter’s ad site.
When advertising on Twitter, you will be able to specify how much you want to spend per ad, pick the cities you want your ad to appear for, and then construct your very own sponsored 140-character tweet.
Targeting your tweets will help you reach the right customer at the right time. For example, if I were to tweet that my dog is sick, it is probable that a tweet of a veterinarian would show up in my Twitter stream minutes later. Because Twitter will follow a Cost-Per-Click (CPC) model, charging only for ads that get a user response such as when a viewer decides to follow the business, retweets the message, or clicks on a link, advertisers do not need to fear burning through their advertising budget too quickly without any return.
As more and more social media platforms come out with advertising capabilities, it is important for businesses to find out which of these advertising mediums maximizes profits for them just as they would do for other advertising means such as print, email, and direct mailings.
The best way to solve this puzzle will probably be to try each of these social media advertising platforms and systematically analyze the results. Once you have a winner, stick with it and own it.