Advertising on Twitter: How to Make Promoted Tweets Work for You

By: Courtney Howell

Have you thought about using social media ads to promote your business? When used appropriately, social media advertising can help you increase brand awareness, build an online community of brand enthusiasts, get your message in front of the right audience and ultimately drive traffic back to your website.

If you’re looking for a way to cut through the clutter of today’s newsfeed and reach your target audience in an effective manner, advertising on Twitter is something you should consider as part of your overall social media strategy.

I have found promoted tweets to be an effective tool for building awareness, generating engagement and driving website traffic. If you’re wondering how to use promoted tweets as part of your social media strategy, here are 6 best practices to consider:

  1. Choose the right campaign: Are you trying to gain more followers, build brand awareness or optimize for website traffic? Your answer to this question will help you determine which promoted tweet campaign you’ll select for the basis of your ad. 
  1. Targeting is key: Much like the advanced targeting options of Facebook’s advertising solutions, Twitter allows you to target specific audiences by location, age, gender, interests and behavior for maximum exposure of your most important tweets. You can even target users based on who they follow and which keywords and/or hashtags they frequently use. 
  1. Keep it simple: Remember, you only have a limited number of characters to work with. Keep your message, short, simple and to the point. Try to keep your tweet under 100 characters.
  1. Include a strong CTA: Reinforce your desired outcome by telling users exactly what you want them to do. If you’re trying to build awareness, ask users to retweet you. Want them to visit your website for more information? Use verbiage like “get the scoop,” “learn more” or “details here.”
  1. Remember, pictures are worth a thousand words: Data has shown that tweets with images receive more engagement—306% more engagement to be exact. And, unlike Facebook, Twitter doesn’t impose a 20% rule for text used on images. Catch users’ attention with big, bold images and take advantage of the opportunity to overlay text. Not only will you be able to say more with less characters, you’ll earn more engagements, too. 
  1. Don’t overuse hashtags or handles: While hashtags are a great way to measure the impact of your tweets and build awareness for your campaigns, use them sparingly. Promoted tweet budgets are measured on a cost per engagement basis. Hence, the more hashtags and handles you include in your tweet, the more links people have to click on and the faster your budget will be used. If you want to target users who are likely to use specific hashtags or follow specific accounts, include those hashtags and handles in your targeting to free up character space (and conserve budget).

As a small business operating in today’s social media driven society, it’s imperative that you take advantage of the advanced advertising resources Twitter provides. However, social media advertising is as much of an art as it is a science. Determine which visuals, copy and incentives will appeal to your target audience. Start experimenting and find what works for you.

Do you currently utilize promoted tweets as part of your overall social media strategy? What success have you seen? Share with us in the comments below.