One of Twitter’s biggest challenges (besides bots, abuse and Nazis) has been figuring out how to monetize the platform. Promoted tweets haven’t always been especially effective, after all. That’s why Twitter is currently eyeing its Explore feature as a way to make some cash. This platform will begin allowing advertisers to take over the tab.
Explore was born out of Moments, which was Twitter’s push to highlight the biggest news and trending topics across the platform. Now, this tab will have Promoted Trend Spotlight ads, which will consist of a large visual banner above the regular explore content. These will appear the first two times per day you visit the tab, and then disappear after that.
No one likes inserted advertising into organic experiences, but Twitter is free to use. It’s understandable that the company is searching for additional (and better) ways to monetize the service.
The last quarter of 2017 was the first time that Twitter reported profitability; that continued in Q1 of 2018. Let’s just hope these ads doesn’t disrupt the user experience too much.