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Twitter trials new advertising system in tweet conversations

Mon 18 Oct 2021

Some Twitter users will start to see more embedded advertisements in their tweet conversations as the company tests a new ad format on its Android and iOS platforms.

The global experiment, which inserts ads under the first, third, or eighth reply under a tweet, brings more advertising opportunities for businesses - and more ad saturation to its customers.

Twitter’s revenue product lead Bruce Falck posted the news on Twitter demonstrating how the ads will appear in tweets.

In the tweet conversation, Falck mentions that the company wants to build an advertising offering that ‘creates value and aligns incentives for creators and advertisers', but the system needs testing first.

“As we experiment with this format over the coming months, we’ll focus on understanding how it performs and how it impacts the people and conversations around it.

“We’ll test different frequencies, layouts, contextually relevant ads, different insertion points, etc. And we’ll examine our learnings and figure out if it’s something we want to make permanent.”·

“We’re excited about trying this out for our advertisers and we’re eager to explore how it could open the door for additional opportunities to reward tweet authors and creators. More to come.”

Twitter Australia managing director Angus Keene echoes Falck’s sentiments and explains that Twitter is evolving as it creates new ways for people to connect and interact. The company wants to make use of this evolution for its advertisers and partner community.

Keene explains, “We are now testing a new ad placement in tweet conversations for a small percentage of people globally. 

“By introducing this new opportunity, we hope to create value and support users and creators who drive everyday conversation and connection on our platform, while also providing incremental scale for advertisers looking to reach untapped audiences during their most engaged moments in conversations.”

Keene concludes, “Over the coming months, we’ll be looking at how this experiment performs and impacts the people and conversations around it.” 

According to 2021 figures from Statista, Twitter generated US$3.21 billion in advertising revenue in 2020 - the highest ever on record for the company, and up from $2.99 billion in 2019. It’s a similar story for Twitter’s overall worldwide revenue, which hit US$3.72 billion in 2020, up from US$3.46 billion in 2019. However, the company also posted a US$1.14 billion net loss last year.

Statista claims that in Q2 2021, Twitter had 206 million ‘monetizable daily active users worldwide’. Statista also predicts that Twitter may have 340 million users by 2024.  

Other Statista figures show China could spend up to US$28.8 billion on social media advertising by the end of 2021, second only to the United States' spend of US$56.1 billion.

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