I have a friend (probably ex-friend after me publishing this) who works as a private detective in California. Much like any smart businessman he knew he’d need a niche specialism to really command capital for his time. So he became an expert in Silicon Valley industrial espionage.
He’s worked on a number of really interesting projects over the year, but he’s normally pretty professional when it comes to revealing specifics. Not the case last week. He had a few too many rum and cokes when we met up, and revealed a bit too much about his work infiltrating Twitter to find out about their advertising platform.
He was being paid by a number of stock brokering types who were planning on shorting companies like Google around the time of the announcement, who wanted the inside line on what they could expect from the announcement scheduled at Chirp on 14th of April.
The headlines are: there’ll be two different advertising options. First the widely reported PPC advertising for Twitter search, nothing hugely inventive here but neither was Adwords when it first launched.
Secondly, and far more interesting to my friend’s clients, was sponsored tweets not unlike ad.ly. With this, advertisers specify a budget per tweet, and a number of twitter followers they hope to reach. Then any twitter user can choose to share the advert with their network.
Each advert will be prefaced by the letter AD (a bit like RT) and include the twitter user name of the advertiser. The revenue is then split between twitter and the users, much like Adsense.
Twitter are hoping this process will act as great user-generated quality control system, with only high quality sponsored tweets making their way into the system.
They’ve also got their fingers crossed that this will lead to a few high profile power users like Conan O’Brien ‘going pro’ and using twitter as their main creative outlet.
But enough of me jabbering on to the screenshots.
Not Surprisingly if you click them they get bigger