With the Web 2.0 blogosphere anxiously awaiting Twitter's forthcoming advertising platform, the folks at 140 Proof are inviting advertisers interested in leveraging the real-time information flow on Twitter to give its platform a shot.
140 Proof March 2 launched a contextual ad platform built expressly for Twitter. In the first run, 140 Proof is integrating ads for HootSuite's Google Android App and iPhone App for smartphones based on those operating systems.
Specifically, 140 Proof's ad solution will help brand advertisers target users of Hootsuite's mobile applications with ads based on those users' personal interests, John Manoogian III, co-founder and vice president of user experience at 140 Proof, told eWEEK.
Here's how it works. Twitter clients fetch bundles of tweets from the Twitter API, then ping 140 Proof's ad service. Advertisers bid on the ads and target users based on keywords in tweets and followers, as well as device, location and platform.
140 Proof spits out a personalized ad for the user, which the client -- in this case HootSuite's Google Android App and iPhone Apps -- takes along with the tweets and displays them in one activity stream.
Unlike annoying and distracting display ads that pop out on some applications, 140 Proof's ads show up in Twitter users' tweet streams. Each ad must have a legitimate tweet associated with it so users can reply and retweet the ad if they desire.
For example, if a user sends a tweet with the word "Coke" in it, 140 Proof could associate an ad with that tweet to display to users, who can then pass the ad on through retweeing ad infinitum.
"Advertisers really dig that because now when a prospect sees a good offer, they can retweet it and it goes to all of their friends," Manoogian III said. "So you get this measurable, viral path that advertisers could not access or buy."
140 Proof chose to rally around third-party apps because some 78 percent of Twitter's traffic comes from access through the myriad Twitter clients, such as HootSuite's mobile apps.
"We've unified all of those apps together into one ad network that you can buy, which does in-stream, targeted advertising," Manoogian III said.
140 Proof sells the ads based on clicks to its network. 140 Proof also shares ad revenue with third-party developers.
140 Proof's approach seems simple and obvious (even though the patent-pending algorithm under the hood may not be), prompting the question: why hasn't Twitter provided something similar?
Manoogian III said Twitter will likely follow the Google route and put ads in their search results. However, 140 Proof expects it could eventually work with Twitter to help the company further fuel advertising and marketing around tweets.
Read more about 140 Proof here on TechMeme