Twitter close to debuting mobile ad product for apps

Product would allow advertisers to run in-feed ads that link to their products in app stores

Financial trends and news by Steven Loeb
March 28, 2014
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Twitter is a company that makes almost all of its money from advertising. It is also a company that is also seeing the vast majority of its users come from mobile.

Do you see where this is going?

Yes, Twitter is apparently very close to releasing a mobile-ad product, one that will allow app makers to encourage users to download their programs, according to a report out from Bloomberg.

The format is going to be known as an "app-install ad," and it will work by having a user click on an ad that appears in their mobile Twitter feed. Once they do that, they will be redirected to the advertiser's page in an app store, where they will be able to download said app.

The company is apparently looking to sell the program to marketers in two verticals: e-commerce and gaming. The ads, which have already been tested for weeks, have already proven to be successful, with the cost of acquiring a new user dropping by four-fifths for one app maker, Bloomberg reported.

It's not hard to see why Twitter would want to release such an ad program. In it's first ever quarterly earnings report as a public company, posted revenue of $243 million, up 116% from $112 million year to year. Of that revenue, almost all of it came from advertising, which accounted for $220 million, a 121% year to year increase. 

More importantly, though, is how much of it came from mobile. More than 75% of Twitter's ad revenue was from mobile. Mobile also represented 184 million, or 76%, of the company's 241 million total mothly active users (MAUs).

Its also important for Twitter to show investors that it can continue to find new ways to make money, despite what is perceived as plateauing user growth. Its MAUs only grew 30% last year, though Dick Costolo insists that will not be a long term problem for the company.

""We are confident in our ability to continue to scale revenue by expanding our global reach, and introducing and scaling new ad products, even as we continue to maintain some of the industry's strictest limits on ad load, in order to optimize for the user experience," he said in a call following the earnings release.

Twitter's advertising efforts

Twitter has spent the last year or so expanding its ad targeting capabilities.

In April of last year it introduced a new keyword targeting tool for advertisers, which allow then to sell ads to users based on words in their tweets. That was followed up in June with targeted cookie-based ads, which means that users started seeing ads for the websites they most recently visited. That effort waslaunched globally in December. 

In January of this year, the company's ad targeting program was expanded even further to include user's email addresses and Twitter IDs for promoted tweets. 

VatorNews has reached out to Twitter to confirm these reports. We will update this story if we learn more.

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