Posted October 19, 2009 11:00 am by with 17 comments

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It’s been interesting to see more and more bloggers moving their thoughts to Twitter. I’ve certainly found myself blogging less, and instead using Twitter to share my thoughts, links, and news.

The downside to that approach is that complete inability to directly monetize that content on Twitter. With Marketing Pilgrim, I can place ads around our posts–and even in our RSS feeds–which helps offset the amount of time and money that goes into bringing Marketing Pilgrim updates to you multiple times a day. When I forsake the blog for Twitter, I’m giving up anywhere from a Big Mac to a filet minion–in terms of lost ad revenue.

Of course, there are plenty of ways to “monetize” Twitter, but I’m starting to consider whether I should look at my Twitter stream the same way I look at Marketing Pilgrim. Then along comes a press release for a new Twitter ad network called Ad.ly.

Ad.ly enables Twitter publishers to make money from the content they produce on Twitter by automatically sending one Tweet every other day from advertisers that they approve. In order to ensure authenticity, every Ad.ly Tweet is explicitly approved by the Twitter publisher.  The publishers are able to set the price they want advertisers to pay and can optionally donate part or all their earning to charity. Each advertiser that signs up for the Ad.ly service will be screened prior to making any offers in order to ensure that only the highest quality of brands and services are using the platform.  Unlike other similar advertising platforms, Ad.ly aims to set a standard for in-stream Twitter advertising.

For the first time, I’m intrigued by Twitter ads. Enough that I signed up for an account. No ads running yet, but I did grab an account. What intrigues me is the way Ad.ly is set up.

I decide how much to charge for each ad campaign.

Ad.ly profiles me to ensure the submitted ads are targeted to my audience.

I decide which individual ads are approved to publish to my Twitter stream.

Ad.ly inserts just 1 tweet in my feed every other day for 7 days.

All ads are clearly labeled as such. Here’s an example:

If I’m going to test advertising in my Twitter stream, Ad.ly has pretty much all that I’d ask of platform.

Right now, I’ve set my weekly price at $1,000–hey, if I’m going to do this, it had better be worth it!–so I don’t expect a land rush of advertisers, looking to place ads. Heck, I may not ever approve an ad that I feel comfortable with.

I guess my next question is: what do you think of ads in Twitter streams? More specifically, would you unfollow me, because of ads like this?