Q&A: Twitter’s Sebastian Turner

In the second in a series of interviews highlighting some of the speakers that will be imparting their wisdom at the final ClickZ Live event of 2014 coming up in Chicago this November, I talked to Sebastian Turner from Twitter about what delegates can expect from his talk and how marketers should be thinking about Twitter as they continue to ramp up their advertising offerings and toolsets.

The outline of your session at ClickZ Live in Chicago talks of the need for an evolving marketing plan. What do you mean by that?

As the digital space evolves, marketers need to evolve as well. As an example, today, we’re seeing that more than 78 percent of Twitter users access the platform on their mobile device. This is radically different from what the overall social space looked like five-plus years ago, when the majority of time on site was spent on desktop. Today, the smartest marketers will adapt and explore multi-device and multi-platform solutions in order to reach their target audience during all moments of relevance.

Where should advertising on Twitter fit into the purchase journey? How should it be thought about in the marketing mix?

Twitter’s suite of creative, measurement, and targeting ad tools can help marketers drive results during all stages of the buying cycle, from consideration through actual conversion. For example, marketers can use Interest and Keyword Targeting to connect with users who are interested in or talking about their brand early on in their purchase journey. And, recent product developments like the Lead Generation Card, Tailored Audiences, or mobile app promotion help advertisers drive results at the bottom of the funnel, effectively driving conversions like leads, sales, or app downloads. We see that with the right strategy, Twitter Ads can help brands accomplish a range of marketing goals, from brand awareness to direct response.

As digital consumption is becoming increasingly mobile, what strategies should marketers be employing across devices?

The shift toward mobile consumption provides marketers with a wealth of new opportunities to connect with their customers in a creative way. Experimenting with new mobile-first formats like Vines or Promoted Video can help advertisers engage their audience with compelling content across desktop and mobile.

If companies are just testing Twitter Ads out, where should they focus their time and budget to get the best results?

While it sounds obvious, the first piece of advice we give marketers is to identify your goal before launching a Twitter Ads campaign. Your goal will drive the development of your content, targeting, and measurement plan, and keep your campaign on track. Different goals will require different strategies. For example, a lead generation strategy varies greatly from a brand awareness one, and marketers will need to continually test and iterate to see what methods work best for them.

What other creative ways have you seen brands using Twitter to engage audiences and amplify their messages?

I work in the B2B space, and have been extremely impressed with the work these clients are doing on Twitter – particularly with regards to direct-response. Two recent success stories that come to mind:

Hostgator, a Web hosting company, uses Twitter Ads tailored audiences to connect with customers who have visited their website, but not yet become customers. By using tweets that feature a compelling creative – a Website Card – Hostgator was able to achieve a 46 percent decrease in CPA, an 83 percent decrease in cost per site, and a 10 percent increase in engagement rate compared to program benchmarks.

For marketing company Simply Measured, Twitter has become a staple in their lead generation efforts. By providing timely content, optimized targeting, and Promoted Tweets featuring rich media images, Simply Measured drove 6,112 total leads for Simply Measured at an average $3.17 cost-per-lead (CPL) – making Twitter the lowest cost-per-lead channel for the company.

What’s your top takeaway from your presentation going to be?

Twitter provides a huge opportunity for marketers to connect with the right audience at just the right time. During my presentation, we’ll discuss what tactics and tools marketers can use to accomplish their advertising goals in a creative, efficient way.

Sebastian Turner will be speaking at 9.30 a.m. on Thursday, November 6 in a session entitled “Cracking the Inbound Marketing Code: From Traffic, to Leads, to Revenue.”

Get your ticket to ClickZ Live Chicago by registering here!

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