Twitter Ads: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

So you use twitter, or your client does.

As much as some people say “twitter is dead” this is definitely not the case.

Some people and businesses make fortunes from marketing themselves on this social media platform – but how can you make more use of twitter? You Tweet, and you have a strategy behind this so you know why you do what you do but is there something you’re missing?

Twitter Ads might just be this; here’s what’s good about using Twitter Ads and, quite frankly, what isn’t.

The Good:

#Tools in Twitter are a little different to some other paid advertising spaces on the web, all of which are there to support the user in getting the most from their ads.

Lead generation cards and website cards, for example. These are to save space within your ad without missing out on your Call To Action. This makes up for Twitter’s small character allowance. Yes, this includes the update to 280 which I know has blown some minds.

#Targeting can shrink your audience size very specifically, which in itself can be a huge advantage. However, Twitter has a very different set of users so by targeting the appropriate hashtags or keywords you will be tapping into a very different audience than you would with google. Depending on the nature of your business, this could be a more appropriate audience for you.

Also, pushing a promoted account means you will appear above non-promoted accounts, which makes sense but this can make a massive difference to the performance of your Ad’s. Twitter also interacts heavily with TV so you can match this up with advertising done there or work around some popular topics from this platform where you know you will be accessing a large audience.

#Growth for your accounts can be massive. The boost in visibility that well constructed ads give can not only grow your following rapidly, but it will also be putting your message and content in front of the right audience. This means your growing audience is a more engaged one and will more likely generate you more leads from the time and effort you’re putting into Twitter.

The Bad:

#Times and Dates are an issue in twitter. Firstly the time zones cannot be changed. Within the UK for a local business this is no issue at all. But when trading internationally and targeting a specific audience this can be a real nuisance. This is something Twitter is behind on as far as the competition is concerned and, from an outside perspective, wouldn’t be the most difficult of fixes. Also navigating between screens and the having to change any date ranges every time is simply bad User Experience and for a company such as Twitter should really be sorted.  You can manually type in date ranges for your campaigns, but this is just a further example of bad User Experience. 

#Display does not show any of your currently active tweets which is crazy. To do this you have to edit the campaigns. This is normally the first thing people want to see when they look at how things are going. This information should not be difficult to access. Their competitors make sure this information is readily available – and twitter is slacking.

#Editing is still behind. Google led the way and others followed by making it possible to make changes to your campaign from the main screen, but not Twitter. You still have to go into “Edit” to make the most simple changes which seems perfectly reasonable. But when you have experienced better service elsewhere, it’s hard to not be frustrated by this simple fact.

 

The Ugly:

#Navigation. You would think it’s simple and at the core of design in most user packages. Twitter have managed to make this harder than it ever need be. There is no easy way to navigate from one campaign to another in Twitter Ads.

You cannot move through campaigns without going back to the home screen which is frustrating enough. Add that to the fact that you cannot see the same data as you were previously viewing, it makes comparing campaigns even more difficult. This is something you will inevitably want to do. Other web advertising will allow you to do this with ease and is my number one issue with Twitter Ads. It makes the process way longer than it needs to be and frustrating. Any resistance to using a platform for usability reasons is an excuse the company should not allow.

 

This is a personal review of Twitter’s advertising software. I think it can be a superb tool for marketing your business, obviously it depends on many factors; target audience, spend, desired goals and your business. It’s an opportunity many miss and you should at least be aware of what Twitter Ads could do for you.

 

For help with other aspects of paid marketing such as Google PPC contact Indiespring.