Twitter business model today is something called “Promoted Tweets”. At a high-level an advertiser can pay Twitter to promote any organic tweet on the Twitter ecosystem and surface it to others at the top of their tweet feed that would not necessarily see that tweet otherwise. As an example, Motorola could pay Twitter to spark a tweet of someone saying “the new Droid is cool!” to a broader audience through promotion. Hence “promoted tweets”.
However, to me – this ‘top of the tweet feeds concept’ smells like a display banner taking over my feed. I know it’s hard to admit it as Twitter was working on this format forever — but If advertisers pay CPM, and if users see it always at the same place — ladies and gentlemen, it’s just yet another banner.
Not sure if advertisers get the value, not sure if users get the value, not sure if Twitter get value. Hence this post.
The main power of twitter is users constant flow of interaction and discovery. Twitter users are constantly interacting via replying to each other, favorite tweets and of course the famous “re-tweet”.
Those “actions” worth a lot in my opinion as they mean that a user really cared to do something and pass their message onward. If I see a tweet that I like – I retweet it !
Imagine Motorola could pay Twitter not to just force users to see their promoted tweets but actually ‘put their money where their mouth is’ and use Twitter’s advanced targeting technology to build a performance based advertising marketplace similar to AdSense. Example — Twitter could show tweets in front of users that are highly likely to retweet them (similar to clicking on an ad). And then, *only* if that happens, the payment would be a buck or maybe based on auction. That way, Twitter could build their own performance based “AdSense”, offering advertisers to really challenge Twitter to get users to act and interact with tweets that resonate with their brand – in exchange – for money, and for the advertisers winning much bigger value.
If twitter didn’t have the technology before, they sure do now as they gained one big Israeli brain Ori Allon running the NY office who sold his last company to Google. Ori’s last technology is used at Google to discover related searches. Good luck !