Twitter Ads, Where’s the Value?

It has now been more than two weeks since we originally setup our Twitter ad campaign. Unfortunately, our after thoughts are not much different than our initial thoughts. Even more disappointing we have actually seen a decrease in our Following base, not exactly what we thought we’d see when spending real money on Twitter ads.

According to the ad campaign stats provided by Twitter we spent a total of  $11.88 during our two week trail period and gained 17 new Followers, making it an average of $0.70 per new Follower. These costs aren’t too far off of what we would have paid for a Facebook ad campaign targeted to only Colorado users. However, with Facebook we would have had control over who in Colorado saw the ad, with Twitter we weren’t able to.  Lets take a closer look at why we will be putting our marketing budget in other areas, other than Twitter.

Twitter Ad Results

Targeting: 

We touched on this one already a little bit, however even if we saw a huge increase in Twitter Followers and gained huge exposure the lack of targeting would likely keep us from throwing too much money at Twitter ads. The only option we have control over with Twitter was the location of which Twitter users would see our ad. However, other than picking where our ad is shown we couldn’t choose anything else. For all we know, our ad was being shown to teenagers still in high school who have no need for our services or seeing our Tweets. Without being able to pick the type of user we’d like to see our ad we were just throwing darts in the dark and hoping that they found the target. These ads are too expensive for that lack of targeting. This issue alone will have us putting our money in Facebook ads, which can be much more targeted to ensure you’re reaching your target market.

Cost:

When initially setting up our Twitter ad we had a suggested bid price from Twitter of $1.25 per new Follower. At first this didn’t surprise us too much since we had limited the targeting location to Colorado only. However, when we switched the location to anywhere in the United States, the suggested bid price did not change, it stayed at $1.25. Compared to Facebook these numbers are expensive. On Facebook we’re seeing national ads costing as low as $0.20 up to $0.80, meaning that with Facebook you’re possibly getting up to 6 times more connections for your money. In a down economy every dollar spent on marketing has to make sense and when it comes to Twitter ads we’re just not seeing the return on investment at $1.25 per new Follower or $0.70 (what we actually ended up paying).

Effectiveness:

When setting up the Twitter ad we gave ourselves a starting budget of $50. Because the only option on Twitter was a maximum daily budget we set our daily budget to $10, assuming that we’d have to manually stop the ad in 5 days. Boy, were we wrong! At the time we’re writing this article we’ve spent $11.88 and this is over a 17 – day period. Strangely enough during this 17 days we’ve gained 17 new Followers, averaging out to be one new Follower a day. Without using Twitter ads we typically saw 1-5 new Followers on a daily basis and that was without having to spend any money. On Facebook with a $10 daily ad budget we have clients that are seeing anywhere from 1-5 new Fans up to 40 new Fans per day. Twitter ads proved to be ineffective in attracting new Followers.

Following Count:

When we originally started the Twitter ad we had right around the 1100 mark, which we’ve been pretty consistent in staying steady at this count. Currently, at the time of writing this article we’re at 1094, which is the lowest point we’ve been at since we started the Twitter ads. At the height we were sitting right at 1105. This trend of going up and down is very common on Twitter, especially with so many “BOT” or “Fake” accounts. However, when we’re paying for Twitter ads and gained 17 new Followers we expected to see a slight increase, instead our Following count has stayed on the exact same trend as it was before the Twitter ads.

 

At this point we have stopped our Twitter ad and not recommending it to any of our clients, we just don’t see the value at this time. We do know that Twitter is working hard to improve their ads and trying to be able to compete with Facebook. As the changes continue to roll out we’ll decide when we’re ready to throw another $50 at Twitter and see if the updates are working. At this point we’ll keep our marketing budget in Facebook ads.

Have you used Twitter ads for your Twitter profile? Did you see similar results or did you see more success than us? Share your comments and thoughts in the comment field below! 

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