Tuesday, January 12th, 2016 | 6 min read
CMOs might find that right under “Secure my dream budget,” their list of New Year’s resolutions includes: “Figure out what Twitter advertising can do for my brand.”
Hosting over 300 million monthly active users, Twitter has proven to be the go-to platform for real-time conversation around the globe. And, over the past few years, Twitter has built an impressive suite of advertising options that give brands direct access to the news feeds of their target audience. Still, some CMOs might not be clear on how their team can use Twitter advertising strategically.
To start, Twitter is not only one of the most direct channels to your audience—it’s also one of the most analytically-robust social networks, and it offers tools that can help you tie campaigns back to overall marketing goals. These benefits alone should be enough to convince you that if you’re not using Twitter ads, you’re leaving precious data, leads, and money on the table.
So, in the spirit of the New Year, let’s unpack these points and help you finally cross that resolution off of your list.
Here’s why Twitter advertising needs to be a part of your strategy in 2016.
Your company’s front office is the first place customers go to interact with your brand, whether it be in person or online. Twitter definitely fits the bill. According to a study by McKinsey & Company, the volume of tweets targeted at brands has grown 2.5x since 2013. In fact, as Twitter noted, “the volume of Tweets from customers directly to brands’ Twitter service handles has grown over 50% in every vertical analyzed, and more than 100% growth in some cases.”
So, what does this mean for advertisers? They need to understand that Twitter is the place to go to reach consumers who are already talking about their brand or expressing interest in what their brand has to offer. Targeted Twitter ads are the perfect way to start a dialogue with their audiences.
One way to do this is through programmatic ads, such as Event Targeting ads, which automatically launch ad creative related to conversations occurring Twitter.
Since Twitter makes a large portion of its user content available to the public, it can provide a wealth of social listening data for brands. For instance, with Twitter’s analytics, marketers can better understand where customers are located, when they make purchases, who they tell about these purchases, and which competitors they follow.
The problem is, many companies’ analytics teams are disconnected from their advertising teams. They’re accessing important metrics and launching ads, but they’re not necessarily integrating these two activities, which means they’re missing out on the opportunity to use valuable metrics to inform and optimize those ads.
It needs to change in your company, too, if it hasn’t already. To get the most out of your data, you need to combine listening analytics with paid activations. And one of the easiest, most effective platforms on which to do that is Twitter.
Twitter is working hard to make its platform beneficial for advertisers. Their latest #AdTech update proves that.
For instance, with new adjustments to its Target Bidding feature, Twitter now allows you to reach users who are likely to take a desired action. This means that marketers can pre-qualify users who are most apt to click on their ad and not waste money on those who aren’t. Twitter also introduced Qualified Impressions, which are only reported when a user sees 100% of an ad’s creative. In other words, you can see that someone didn’t just scroll past your video; they actually watched it.
Most recently, Twitter announced its new conversational ads feature, which encourages users to answer questions from brands and share their answers with customizable hashtags. For instance, The Barista Bar launched this conversational ad, asking users if they preferred the brand’s house blend or dark roast coffee.
Once a user clicks on a button, they can choose to send a pre-crafted tweet about it to their followers or write their own tweet. This new tool allows brands to generate more earned media at no extra cost. By asking the right questions, marketers can also gain a better idea of which audiences are responding to certain products.
These features help prove that people engage with ads on Twitter and that there are valuable leads to be pursued.
Twitter may have seemed confusing at one point, but it’s not such a tough nut to crack. Consumers are already on the platform, engaging with brands and talking about their purchase habits. This means that marketers have the best analytics available to launch automated ads, target desired customers, and vet qualified leads.
If you jump-start these tactics in 2016, hopefully on next year’s list of New Year’s resolutions, you’ll be able to put down, “Crush our Twitter strategy. Again.”
About the Author: Amanda Walgrove writes about content marketing, social media, and online entertainment. She has written for Advertising Week, The Huffington Post, Tablet Magazine, and The Content Strategist, among others.