Is anyone surprised?
Twitter announced yesterday that it is unrolling an ad program to monetize the site.
OK. Makes perfect business sense. After all, they do have millions of users at their fingertips.
But what does it mean for us? Marketers that already promote products using 140 characters?
It simply means, the big boys (corporate accounts) will be out there with us. Offering freebies, coupons, product updates just like all marketers do.
The difference right now is that they will be paying. And getting an audience for their money. In the first phase, the target markets will be anyone using twitter search. So, if you’re not using twitter search, you won’t have ads in your stream. I guess I need to add paid ads to that because we are all getting tweets with promotional links in our stream.
Right now, the only promotional tweets you are getting are from people you are following. You are choosing who sends you a promotional link.
In the second phase of the Twitter monetization, the ads will be placed in streams where advertisers think their prospects are. For example, if you twitter alot about coffee, a Starbucks ad could appear in your stream.
What does it all mean? I’m not sure yet. Is it going to be a bad thing? I don’t know that either.
What I do know is this: It is not unexpected, will probably not be the demise of Twitter, and online business owners need to get ready for it.
The most challenging but also fun aspect of having an online business is how the internet continues to change and evolve. The most successful online biz owners will change with the flow!
p.s. For a more detailed explanation about Twitter’s “Promoted Tweets,” you can read the Twitter Official Blog Post