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Summary:

Flash sales and daily deals are so hot right now. Today Twitter took the wraps off @earlybird, a company-run account that will publish and promote offers from advertisers. Initial offers will be targeted at the U.S., but Twitter promises future location-specific and interest-specific deals.

Flash sales and daily deals are so hot right now. Today Twitter took the wraps off @earlybird, a company-run account that will publish and promote offers from advertisers. Initial offers will be targeted at the U.S., but Twitter promises it is looking into location-specific and interest-specific deals. Twitter says to expect offers to always be “time-sensitive and sometimes supply-sensitive.”

As is its wont, Twitter is weaving this monetization scheme into the way its messaging service already works, with at least some deals coming from @earlybird “retweeting” deals advertisers have posted on their own Twitter accounts. Like Groupon and Gilt Groupe, advertising and content are one and the same, delivered to users who have specifically indicated their interest in seeing deals. Multiple advertisers already use Twitter in this way, for instance United Airlines with its limited-time offer “twares” regularly posted on Twitter.com/unitedairlines.

But my favorite part of Twitter’s explainer about the announcement is when the company admits they are actually doing this for capitalistic revenue-generating reasons. Finally!

Does Twitter make money from this?

Yes, we earn revenue through our relationships with advertisers. Our focus will be to try and make these deals interesting and of value to you. We take pride in being selective about the type of deals we highlight and hope they will be an exciting way to start your day.

The first inkling of @earlybird came last week with a report by ReadWriteWeb.

Meanwhile, Boston-based BuyWithMe, a direct competitor of Groupon and the many other daily deal sites, today filed with the SEC that it had raised $16 million from investors including Matrix Partners. Yipit reports BuyWithMe is the third-largest daily deals site behind Groupon and LivingSocial, which have raised more than $170 million and $44 million, respectively.

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Social Advertising Models Go Back to the Future

  1. Where do all these companies get the coupons? Do they deal with coupon consolidators/aggregators or do they all have to develop a relationship with the original merchants/manufacturers?

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  2. The targeted advertising is a big thing. Google started with this and I am glad to see other companies follow suit. This feature saves the local business owner money and allows them to focus there advertising.

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  3. [...] aparición de la cuenta @earlybird en Twitter, lanzada por la propia compañía y destinada a la difusión de ofertas de productos y servicios, pone de actualidad la interesante cuestión del papel de la red como reductor de fricción: cada [...]

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  4. [...] aparición de la cuenta @earlybird en Twitter, lanzada por la propia compañía y destinada a la difusión de ofertas de productos y servicios, pone de actualidad la interesante cuestión del papel de la red como reductor de fricción: cada [...]

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  5. Twitter obviously makes money from advertisers. We will see what @earlybird brings. @jgwentworth

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  6. [...] and eventually other places. It will feature promoted trends in its trending topics. It will publicize sales and other deals. It will offer pro accounts (at some point). Now, Peter Kafka reports that Twitter is [...]

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  7. [...] unveils 'Earlybird' advertising featureLos Angeles Times (blog)VentureBeat -GigaOm (blog) -Erictricall 28 news [...]

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  8. [...] Jul. 11, 2010, 3:49pm PDT No Comments       Social shopping is all the rage. Prominent startups like Twitter are expanding into this space, and newer ones like BuyWithMe are receiving large amounts of funding to pursue [...]

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  9. [...] As Twitter’s network has continued to grow, topping more than 2 billion tweets a month (and causing some related uptime issues), the company has faced increasing pressure to monetize that user base and find some way of generating recurring revenue. Selling access to its data through the “firehose” API to search engines like Google and Microsoft is one way Twitter has done this, but it has also been experimenting with features that blend advertising and the core functionality of the service. This includes “promoted tweets,” “promoted trends” and the company’s latest offering: discount offers from advertisers through an account called @earlybird. [...]

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