Are Twitter’s mobile ads starting to click?

Twitter is showing some early signs of success in terms of monetization, selling advertising on major mobile devices. It’s an area, which has been bedeviling most leading Internet companies like Facebook and Google. The social site on most days is now being able to generate the chunk of its revenue from ads displayed to its users on mobiles and other gadgets on the move, rather than from those on Twitter.com, according to company executives.

What is driving this transition? One important reason: People who view a Twitter ad on their devices are much more likely to click or likely to interact with it in similar way, which is how the platform gets paid for advertisements.

Mobile-competent ads doing better

The online social company based in San Francisco has only been offering mobile-competent ads in earnest for last three months or so. However, some brands opting to buy Twitter ads stated that they haven’t kept any tabs in particular on the effectiveness or visibility of their campaigns run on mobile devices. Interestingly P.F. Chang’s China Bistro is one among the select advertisers that claim they were positively surprised at how many users are actually clicking on Twitter mobile ads.

The Scottsdale, Ariz.-based restaurant chain this winter spent $25,000 to pitch a Lunar New Year promotion to people on Twitter. P.F. Chang’s arranged to push posts promoting dining rewards to Twitter users, including those searching for terms such as “Chinese New Year,” on their mobile phones or their personal computers.

In their campaign’s first four days, P.F. Chang’s revealed almost 1 million people happened to click, re-circulate or otherwise interact with the Twitter ad. Almost 70% of those people did so from mobiles rather than desktops. As the company began noticing the favorable results, it quickly shifted that whole Twitter ad budget to wireless medium, as confirmed by its digital content & community manager, Jason Miller. He added, the results were indeed staggering,’ pointing out that they kicked off in April another $25,000 Twitter ad campaign in order to pitch and push lunch offerings. It hasn’t been though, Mr. Miller quipped, as effective in terms of clicks or restaurant sales.

His reading is that Twitter ads might be better suited for time-sensitive events and not so much for awareness-building efforts, as that may be the area where Twitter ads seem to fall flat, he said. Underlining how large part of revenue on the network is beginning to come from Phones, drawing the attention of advertisers, The Wall Street Journal news report by Shira Ovide elaborates:

“Twitter says its mobile-advertising business is working because a company can easily convert any tweet into an ad. The format of ads on Twitter’s mobile and desktop sites are the same, and advertisers pay the same rate no matter the platform. On many mobile services including Google’s, ad rates are lower in part because advertiser demand is lower. Twitter also says its users are more active on mobile devices, which may explain why interaction with ads is higher, too. About 60% of its 140 million monthly users access the service on mobile devices.”

Twitter’s president of global revenue segment, Adam Bain, emphasizes the fact that mobile is growingly the means for people to access Twitter, and it’s where users are overall, and it’s where the business now lies.