Twitter Readies Ad Unit, Marketers Question Practical Usage

Twitter testingAppealing directly to e-commerce and gaming firms, Twitter is reportedly readying a new app-promoting ad unit.
 
Once clicked, sources tell Bloomberg News that the units will take users to a mobile-app store, where they will able to download their desired mobile application. A Twitter spokesman declined to comment on the report.
 
The microblogging giant continues to innovate on a number of fronts, including new opportunities for advertisers.
 
Just this week, Twitter added the ability to tag photos and post multiple photos at the same time. Users can now tag up to 10 people in their photos. Twitter is also reportedly preparing to launch a new music strategy, which will be centered on relevant conversations and content being circulated among users.
 
Still, marketers continue to question Twitter’s practical application, as was illustrated by a recent survey of about 1,100 marketing professionals. Even among those that actually include Twitter in their campaigns, 30.6% said they remain undecided about the platform’s effectiveness as a marketing tool.
 
In addition, mainstream audiences remain slow to embrace Twitter. As such, the company’s domestic growth will fall from nearly 20% in 2003 to below 10%, next year, according to a recent report from eMarketer. In four short years, growth will slow to just 6.4%, the research firm expects.
 
By eMarketer’s reckoning, Twitter’s usership will grow from about 43 million U.S. consumers in 2013 to 65 million in 2018 -- or about half of Facebook’s current domestic user base.
 
On the bright side, Twitter’s public visibility is the envy of Madison Avenue — reason enough for some analysts to remain bullish about the company.
 
According to a recent report from Deutsche Bank, a “shocking” 95% of consumers report hearing about Twitter at least once or twice a week, while 62% hear about the microblogging platform at an even higher frequency.

“These insights highlight that most issues around attraction, conversion and retention of [monthly active users] are largely fixable,” Deutsche Bank wrote in its recent report. “We believe Twitter is well aware of and working on these issues and are comfortable that MAU growth could re-accelerate at some point in 2014.”

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