I joined Twitter fairly late, but in the last six months I’ve managed to accumulate nearly 4000 followers. I’ve tried promoting a few affiliate programs via my tweets and I can’t really say they’ve been successful. However, this week I’m testing a new way to monetise my twitter following; sponsored tweets. I joined Ad.ly earlier this week, an ‘in-stream’ advertising service that injects a maximum of one tweet per day featuring advertising. Twitter users get to set their price and advertisers then can purchase those slots.
I’ve set my price at a fairly low $20 as I want to see what sponsored tweets come through. Even at this price though, one sponsored tweet a day would bring in over $600 of revenue which is great for a service that only took me 2 mins to setup. There’s also a referral program for users, where users get paid 12% of the income that their referrals make. There’s even a challenge on at the moment where the person who refers the most ad.ly users between November 16th and December 13th win a free 13′ Macbook Pro.
The current ad.ly Race leaderboard is below:
I think Ad.ly have made a mistake by displaying the leaderboard as it’s dominated by the usual suspects like John Chow and Jeremy Schoemaker, so normal bloggers like you and I have no chance of winning. However, maybe ad.ly have intentionally done this as they know that mega bloggers like these guys can refer more users than the rest of us put together and displaying the leaderboard will help encourage the rivalry between the big guys.
Overall I think Ad.ly is a good idea, although I’m reserving my judgement until I see the first ads. If they prove to be totally irrelevant then I will probably leave.
Have you displayed Ad.ly ads in your twitter stream? what was your experience? Do you think services like Ad.ly will further decrease the value of twitter as a good medium to communicate?