Twitter refines ad tools

22 February 2013

SAN FRANCISCO: Twitter, the microblog, has developed an application programming interface that will enable advertisers to better manage their campaigns on its site.

Campaigns previously had to be managed manually, but the process is automated in the new system, and advertisers can also integrate campaigns with other sites, including Facebook and LinkedIn.

In a blog post, April Underwood, Twitter product manager for revenue, wrote that the company had aimed to develop an approach that "encourages ads that are engaging, relevant and useful".

"Our system rewards marketers for being good, not for being loud," she added.

Speaking to the Financial Times, she said that the new system would make it easier for advertisers to target their ads, so users should see "more relevant and better ads".

She also stated that there would be "no direct impact on the user experience in the short term", while declining to rule out any possible future increase in the number of ads delivered.

Advertisers, however, could see costs increase as auctions to buy ads become more competitive.

"This is an obvious and necessary piece of infrastructure that all companies with proprietary ads systems need," Josh McFarland, chief executive of TellApart, an ad targeting company, said.

Referring to the fact that APIs can cede some control to third parties, he observed that "Twitter's willingness to build an ads API signals that they've reached a size where they feel that the accretive value of third parties – to monetisation at least – outweighs the risks."

Data sourced from Twitter/FT; additional content by Warc staff