In toying with ads, Twitter, the net’s largest micro-publishing service, is going where every internet company in search of a dollar has gone before. But the history of how advertising has been introduced into a formerly commercial-free community is mixed, and success for this billion-dollar baby depends on how they decide to zag.
Twitter, the net’s largest micro-publishing service,launched an ad service that will let advertisers — beginning with some of the world’s top brands such as Starbucks — have their tweets show up in the top of search results. It’s a first attempt by the service to make money from its users.
Twitter’s ad model should sound familiar to net users, because it’s not unlike Google’s search ads — which let advertisers have links to their services and products show up above and beside search results. It’s not a bad model to work off, given those tiny ads propelled Google into one of the world’s top tech companies with enough global clout to even take on Microsoft and the Chinese government.
Twitter is moving tentatively, however: Only one “sponsored tweet” will be displayed alongside search results, and the ad has to be something the advertiser already tweeted.
Will the ad model help verify Twitter’s billion dollar valuation? I wonder.