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The Googlization of Twitter

Milly Diaz
Milly Diaz
Associate Director of Social Media
8 March 2010


The Wall Street Journal revealed more details about Twitter’s monetisation plans. According to insiders, Twitter will be launching ‘Google-style’ sponsored ads around its search results.

Brands have expressed mixed feelings about the news. According to the trade journal, Marketing, some brands, like Virgin Media, see it as an excellent way to harness the power of the platform. While others, such as Honda, are less convinced. In my opinion the Honda’s of the world are smart to take the wait and see approach. How exactly will things be priced and what will the search volumes be? And, how will Twitter make its SERP less spammy and more relevant to brand searches?

Twitter’s plans strengthen my colleague Neilson Hall’s assertion that the  future is social search integrated with natural search.  Consumers are less inclined to ‘trust’ paid ads outside of Twitter. Isn’t it likely they’ll feel the same way within the Twittersphere?

A part of me thinks that using Twitter ads alone are a lazy and ineffective way for brands to engage with the Twitter community. Invest the resources to establish a presence and nurture your relationships with the advocates that will naturally gravitate to your brand profile. If your brand has a strong presence on Twitter your messaging would be spread naturally through tweets by your followers and Retweets of your content.

What are your thoughts? Do you think Twitter’s Google-like strategy is the right move? And are brands taking the easy way out by paying to engage with the community?



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