This is interesting! Last week’s post with Ford CMO Jim Farley’s statements about how Ford has seen massive cost savings via Social Media proved to be quite popular. In fact I believe it’s the most RTed post I’ve ever written.
Well last Thursday after publishing the post, Ford’s Scott Monty contacted me and said that Ford wanted to use my tweet as a Promoted Tweet on Twitter! He explained that Ford is going to begin experimenting with using content from customers and 3rd party sources as Promoted Tweets, instead of just promoting its own tweets and content. Apparently my tweet was the first one from a 3rd party source that they had used as a Promoted Tweet.
I think that’s a pretty damn gutsy move on Ford’s part. And if Ford is willing to start promoting non-company content, it suggests to me that the company must be very satisfied with the results it has seen from previous social media efforts, to be willing to spend money promoting 3rd party content.
Why would Ford do this? Well would you rather hear Ford say how amazing it is, or would you rather hear what a Ford customer has to say? And even though I am not currently a Ford customer, Ford using my tweet as a Promoted Tweet is very innovative and of course I wanted to share it with you. So there’s additional coverage for Ford.
So what were the results? I asked Ford for the results and Brian shared these numbers with me from Ford promoting my tweet:
Impressions – 411
Clickthroughs – 26
ReTweets – 8
Clickthrough Rate – 6.3%
Engagement Rate – 8.27%
Now here’s how that clickthrough rate compares with other forms of online advertising/promotion:
So the 6.3% clickthrough for this Promoted Tweet is higher than the avg clickthroughs for email, Google AdWords, and Banner Ads. Now granted, this is a REALLY small sample, but the numbers suggest that the clickthrough rate for Promoted Tweets should be comparable to email, if not better in some cases. I also think this could suggest that Twitter users are more engaged and as such, Promoted Tweets could be a real business driver for Twitter moving forward.
Now those 26 clicks accounted for about 3% of my traffic on Friday, so it wasn’t a huge bump for me. Then again, Friday saw 754 vistiors here thanks to the popularity of the post with Jim’s video. So on a normal day, 26 extra visitors would be 7-10% of my traffic. So it’s a bit more significant.
One thing I found interesting was that Brian and Scott told me beforehand that they were going to buy the Promoted Tweet for my tweet on Friday, and told me the keywords they had purchased. Promoted Tweets work by showing up as the top search result when you search for the purchased keywords, and they are clearly marked as a Promoted Tweet. On Friday I searched several times with the keywords Ford had purchased to see if I could get the Promoted Tweet to show up in search results, and I couldn’t. So not sure how Twitter decides to insert the Promoted Tweets into search results.
BTW for the record, Twitter asked Ford to get my permission to use my tweet as a Promoted Tweet.
What do y’all think of Ford using content from its customers/other sources as Promoted Tweets instead of or in addition to its own? Will we begin to see more companies doing this, and if you were exposed to Promoted Tweets, would you rather have them come from the company, or its customers?
UPDATE: Just to clarify, Ford didn’t pay me a penny to use my tweet as a Promoted Tweet.