Long the subject of speculation and prediction, the world’s most active micro blog, Twitter, announced major changes to their social network in an attempt to position their network as a profitable enterprise. Twitter Feeds will no longer be free of the influence of the almighty dollar as Twitter unveiled its new Promoted Tweets function, which is basically Adwords for Twitter, and TweetUp, the latest development out of Idealab which is a search engine and bidding marketplace that works in collusion with Twitter.
Twitter offers advertising partners top post
On the Twitter blog, the company enumerated specific expectations of the advent of Promoted Tweets. Advertising partners can bid for keywords to ensure their tweets reach the top of the pile once a certain keyword is searched for, much akin to the Google Adwords model. Twitter lined up commercial partners to start using Promoted Tweets that include Starbucks, Virgin America, Best Buy, Red Bull and Bravo, and offers as example that Starbucks Tweets will always turn up first for a Twitter search for the term “coffee,” provided Starbucks continues to bid on the term.
Twitter emphasizes that they are only in the first phase of their Promoted Tweets program and insists that the promotional aspect of the tweet placement does not mean a decay of quality. Promoted Tweets, according to Twitter, must meet a higher standard than your average tweet, resonating with users and garnering retweets to maintain its placement as a top tweet.
TweetUp seeks to establish bidding marketplace
TweetUp is a bit more complicated than Twitter’s Promoted Tweets as it utilizes an algorithm taking into account a tweet’s author, number of followers, influence score, number of retweets, along with the user’s bid for their tweet. Keywords will cost 1 cent per impression; however, if a tweet does not meet the aforementioned qualifications, there is no bid high enough to launch it to the top of the feed (like an Adwords quality score).
All in all, major changes lie ahead for the social network taking its first steps toward monetization; however, Twitter promises the integrity of its network will be maintained, if not emboldened, as the white noise of real time updates won’t hide relevant tweets in the shuffle.