Advertising on Twitter: Your Quick-Start Guide to the Self-Serve Platform


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Learn the step-by-step process for setting up your first Promoted Tweets or Promoted Accounts campaign on Twitter's self-serve ad platform. We'll cover ad formats, targeting, bidding, and more.

Published in: Marketing, Technology, Business

Advertising on Twitter: Your Quick-Start Guide to the Self-Serve Platform

  1. 1. Advertising on Twitter: Your Quick-Start Guide to the Self-Serve Platform
  2. 2. Twitter Advertising | Ad Formats Twitter offers two basic ad formats on the self-serve platform. Promoted Tweets Promoted Accounts Now that Twitter has opened their self-serve advertising platform to all users, it’s time for brands to start taking advantage of this affordable and highly targeted form of social ads. Don’t worry -- they’re easier to plan, set up, and run than you might think. Our quick-start guide will help you get going.
  3. 3. Twitter Advertising | Promoted Accounts Purpose: Promoted Accounts is intended for follower acquisition. How it Works: Twitter displays your brand’s handle on the left-hand column of the site in the “Who to follow” box. Your brand appears alongside Twitter’s other tailored recommendations, but it is denoted that your account is promoted. What it Costs: Advertisers are charged on a costper-follower basis. While prices will vary depending on your brand, targeting, and seasonality, many advertisers see a CPF of $2 $4.
  4. 4. Twitter Advertising | Promoted Tweets Purpose: Promoted Tweets are intended for content syndication, campaign promotion, and brand awareness. How it Works: Brands select the Tweets they want to promote, and Twitter displays them at or near the top of targeted users’ news feeds. They can also appear in the search results for targeted keywords. What it Costs: Advertisers are charged on a cost-per-engagement basis. Engagements are defined as retweets, favorites, follows, or clicks anywhere on the Tweet. Many brands see an average CPE between $0.50 - $2.
  5. 5. Twitter Advertising | Campaign Setup The process for setting up your campaign is very similar whether you’re running Promoted Tweets or Promoted Accounts. Start by selecting your campaign name and duration. * Note: First-time advertisers, Twitter may put your account through a verification process before it begins serving impressions, so allow a 24 to 48-hour time cushion for your campaign to actually launch.
  6. 6. Twitter Advertising | Targeting When you run Promoted Tweets, Twitter gives you the option to target users by selected keywords or by interest categories and followers that are similar to relevant handles.
  7. 7. Twitter Advertising | Targeting Followers Twitter’s username targeting allows you to input the handles of brands and individuals who are likely to have a following similar to your target audience. For instance, if you’re trying to target small business owners, you could input the handles of small business influencers like @SmallBizTrends, @EntMagazine, @NeilPatel, etc. You can expand your reach by adding more handles and/or handles with large followings.
  8. 8. Twitter Advertising | Targeting Interests In addition to targeting based on usernames, you can also target consumers based on a set of pre-determined interest categories that Twitter has defined.
  9. 9. Twitter Advertising | Targeting Interests Twitter allows you to choose from 25 different broad interest categories, each with their own subcategories. You can select any combination of interests from multiple categories.
  10. 10. Twitter Advertising | Targeting Keywords Alternatively, you can choose to target users by the keywords they use in their Tweets. This targeting parameter is only available for Promoted Tweets campaigns, not Promoted Accounts.
  11. 11. Twitter Advertising | Targeting Keywords As you input your keywords, you can select the match type you’d like, similar to the options you have for PPC ads. Twitter also gives you the option to avoid targeting users that have used your keywords within the context of a negative Tweet. This can be a valuable feature if you’re targeting a lot of brand and product keywords.
  12. 12. Twitter Advertising | Targeting Demographics Location targeting will be key for brick-and-mortar businesses, as well as brands running geo-specific campaigns. Don’t waste your money targeting users that can’t become customers! You can segment within the US by State/Region, Metro Area, or Postal Code. Gender targeting can be a valuable feature, but keep in mind that many Twitter users have unspecified genders.
  13. 13. Twitter Advertising | Targeting Devices Device targeting is a valuable parameter depending on your product, campaign goals, and/or landing page. If your product is intended to work on iOS devices, then go ahead and uncheck those Android, Blackberry, and other boxes. Those users probably won’t become customers. Are you driving traffic to a landing page that renders poorly on mobile devices? Preserve your customer experience, and consider only targeting desktop and laptop users.
  14. 14. Twitter Advertising | Selecting Your Tweets If you’re running a Promoted Tweets campaign, then it’s time to select the Tweets you want to include. If you’re running a Promoted Accounts campaign, then you’ll skip this step! You have the option to promote a Tweet that you’ve already published, or you can create an original Tweet that will only exist as part of your campaign and won’t be published to your timeline.
  15. 15. Twitter Advertising | Selecting Your Tweets While Twitter does give you the option to automatically promote your new Tweets, we typically recommend taking a more controlled approach to Tweet selection. Select the Tweets that best represent your brand and contribute directly to campaign goals.
  16. 16. Twitter Advertising | Selecting Your Tweets If you want to create new Tweets that won’t be published to your timeline, you can write them within the campaign manager. Attach a photo, your location, a shortened URL, or a lead generation card. Creating unpublished Tweets is ideal for campaigns where you want to test a wide variety of copy variations, CTAs, images, or landing pages without spamming your followers.
  17. 17. Twitter Advertising | Budget Here’s where the money comes in. If you have a set budget that you can’t exceed, enter it as your total budget. Once your campaign hits that number, it will automatically shut off. Entering a total budget is optional, but you are required to set a daily budget. Regardless of the length of your campaign, it will turn off each day after your daily maximum is reached.
  18. 18. Twitter Advertising | Bidding As we mentioned in the beginning, Twitter bills for Promoted Tweets on a cost-per-engagement basis, and for Promoted Accounts on a cost-perfollower basis.
  19. 19. Twitter Advertising | Bidding Start off by placing your bid somewhere within Twitter’s recommended range. As you adjust your bid and targeting parameters, Twitter will update the estimated reach of your campaign. If you find that you’re spending your full budget every day, slowly lower your bid price and monitor how it affects performance. If you aren’t spending your daily budget, you may need to expand your targeting or increase your bid.
  20. 20. Twitter Advertising | Launch! Once you’ve set up all your campaign dates, budget, targeting, and Tweets, you’re ready to launch! Your live campaign will appear in your main campaign dashboard, where you can monitor impressions, engagements, and spend over time. Keep a close eye on your metrics, and optimize the campaign as you go!
  21. 21. Twitter Advertising | RBM Want to learn more about social campaign strategy and management? Drop us a line with questions or comments at www.