Twitter Courts Direct-Response Advertisers With New Reporting Tools

Early tests show Promoted Tweets lift conversions

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Twitter today unveiled an analytics feature called Conversion Lift that lets marketers regularly measure how Promoted Tweets perform in terms of conversions, which entail clicks, app installs or sign-ups for services. Interestingly, the feature also susses out if the ads persuaded someone to switch phone carriers, something T-Mobile's social team is likely particularly interested in.

To determine how effective an ad is, Conversion Lift splits a marketer's target audience into two groups: people who saw a news feed-style ad and those who didn't. The reporting then compares the conversion rates of both groups, including whether the action took place on desktop or mobile.

Twitter said the tests, utilizing Conversion Lift, revealed that people who see Promoted Tweets are 1.4 times more likely to interact with a brand than those who don't see an ad. What's more, it said people who visit a brand's website after seeing a Promoted Tweet are 3.2 times more likely to convert than those who visit the website without seeing one.

"As all performance marketers know, understanding the incremental contribution of the clicks and views on your ad campaign is critical—particularly when you're running mobile or cross-device campaigns," Twitter said in a blog post. "Last-click attribution is an inaccurate reflection of what's driving results, because the average customer switches between multiple devices, platforms and sites before making a purchase."

Based on the data, Twitter then recommends ways for advertisers to more effectively target. For example, Twitter may advise an athletic brand that initially only zeroed in on sports enthusiasts to also target casual sports fans. 

The Conversion Lift represents Twitter's latest step toward convincing direct-response advertisers that it's a good place to spend money. Late last month, Twitter rolled out its 'Buy' button to all retailers and added video to its conversion-driving app installs in July.

Conversion Lift comes on the heels of Twitter laying off more than 300 employees earlier this week.

@laurenjohnson Lauren Johnson is a senior technology editor for Adweek, where she specializes in covering mobile, social platforms and emerging tech.