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Last week we have seen two major developments in social media advertising from two of the biggest players. Twitter has announced ‘Promoted Accounts’ and Facebook has revealed its plans for video ads (Tnooz).

TWITTER PROMOTED ACCOUNTS

The Twitter promoted account feature is the latest iteration of developing tools and services to help people and organisations grow their follower count. The feature can be found in the “who to follow” sidebar, alongside the other recommended accounts, which are selected organically. A “promoted” icon will indicate that this is a paid for recommendation.

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In addition the feature will integrate the paid follow button into users timelines, which in turn means that Twitter users will see the promoted icon as well under certain tweets. Marketers can choose mainly from three targeting options: interest, geography and gender. Twitter applies a pay per action mode, meaning that businesses pay only when users follow their account.

For tourism businesses this feature represents an opportunity to grow their relationship marketing efforts. Making use of promoted accounts not only pushes specific content in front of users, but allows marketers to start building more longterm relationships. However, the big winner in this new initiative will certainly be Twitter, by developing anew income stream.

FACEBOOK VIDEO ADDS

The more controversial move has been made by Facebook. The silicon valley giant announced its latest addition to its paid ad schemes: Facebook Video Ads in the news feed. For tourism marketers this news is a double edged sword. On the one side it gives them access to the news feed, a feature many digital marketers have been looking forward to for a long time. On the other side, this makes Facebook even more into a pay-to-play environment, making it even harder for companies to position content organically into users news feeds.

From a user’s point of view the question remains, wether the news feed will become too cluttered at one point, thereby driving people to alternative, less ad focussed social networks.

 

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