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Twitter launches new advertising campaigns for SMEs

4 December, 2013

marketing through twitter

Twitter has recently announced the launch of their UK self-service ad platform, which allows small and medium enterprises (SMEs) outside of the United States to set up advertising campaigns for the first time.

Previously, companies not based in the US have had to develop a working relationship with Twitter in order to buy adverts on the site, which really limited the site’s customer base to large companies only.

As a result of the announcement, I’ve had a number of queries from clients about what this means for them and what the possible pros and cons are.

So, first things first, what is it all about? Ravi Narashimhan, Twitter Product Manager says: “All you need is a Twitter account and a credit card. You’re in control of your ads, the audience you want to reach, and of course your budget. Best of all, you will only be charged when people follow your Promoted Account or retweet, reply, favourite or click on your Promoted Tweets. You are never charged for your organic Twitter activity.”

Twitter has also announced that it will be teaming up with O2 to offer unique O2 Social Insights and a Social Toolkit. The aim of this partnership is to help guide small businesses through the social media process enabling them to effectively market themselves on Twitter, ultimately improving outreach and activities.

Twitter ads

courtesy of

The 02 Insights and Toolkit is also designed to deliver data, track progress and compare their performance among competitors and others in their sector and region.

So, how do you set up ad campaigns on Twitter?

The process really is simple and won’t require any specific Twitter training. All you need to do is login to your businesses Twitter account. You will be taken to the welcome page and invited to click on the ‘Get Started’ button, which then allows you to launch a campaign with Twitter Ads.

With Twitter ads, there are two options including ‘Promoted Account’ or ‘Promoted Tweet’.

The Promoted Account option enables you to:

  • Grow your follower base and build an audience of new and existing customers
  • Followers see your tweets, creating opportunities for engagement over time
  • Pay only when you add a follower via your promoted account

The Promoted Tweet option enables you to:

  • Get your message in front of more of the right people
  • Create a conversation and drive marketing results
  • Pay only when users engage e.g. click on a tweet, retweets, replies, favourites and follows

If you choose to find out more about either of these, simply click the blue ‘Learn more’ text and read through the details provided. When you’re ready to set up the campaign, click the relevant blue box.

The great thing about this service is that you will only be charged when people connect or follow your promoted account, the organic Twitter activity remains yours free of charge.


What other benefits are there of Paid Ads on Twitter?

You can build and own your audience. When using a feature like Promoted Accounts, the goal is often to attract new followers, and targeting can be set up based on interests. This means that you can build the exact audience that you’d like to target in the future. As you attract new followers, you also now “own” them and can organically tweet out to them as you see fit at no charge.

They drive users from Twitter onto your landing page. If we look at Promoted Tweets, you can target by keywords, target your followers, target users who visit your page or target users that share similar interests to your existing followers (similar to look-a-like display targeting).

By utilising these targeting features, you can then tailor your ad messaging and landing page experience so that it is consistent and relevant to your target audience.

What are the Disadvantages of Using Twitter Paid Ads?

The main one is around servicing of the account. SMEs with small budgets are unlikely to have Twitter reps that they can have regular contact with to ask questions, help troubleshoot, or brainstorm new marketing approaches. This is likely to put SMEs at a disadvantage if they don’t have specific teams managing Twitter on a daily basis to offer recommendations or insights.

The Twitter campaign is simple enough to run on your own with little or no Twitter training, but make sure you keep the messaging fresh by updating it often, and always be thinking about your goals, trends, and your long term Twitter strategy.

In my opinion, I think Twitter advertising can act as a good channel to help build a customer base, connect with that base, and ultimately drive sales and leads – but it must form part of you wider Twitter strategy.

As mentioned, just make sure that your business takes responsibility for managing Twitter and remember that the effort you put in needs to be consistent and content kept fresh and engaging in order to reap significant benefits.

To find out more about Twitter’s business features, check out

If you are considering implementing Twitter advertising, feel free to get in touch if you’ve got any questions or need some advice as we offer Social media management services.

For more information and ideas on maximising your digital marketing campaigns, sign up to my blog or contact me directly on 011 33 20 21 21.

For more ideas on using Twitter and social media to promote your business, click on the blog links below:

  • […] renowned for being complicated and difficult to run. They are also a relatively new feature for SMEs operating in the UK only becoming available at the end of 2013.  If you are a business owner using Twitter then […]

    1. […] renowned for being complicated and difficult to run. They are also a relatively new feature for SMEs operating in the UK only becoming available at the end of 2013.  If you are a business owner using Twitter then […]

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