Twitter lures small businesses with advertising platform

The developer is teaming up with American Express to up to $1 million in free advertising to small businesses that help test out its new SMB advertising services.
Written by Heather Clancy, Contributor

Not using Twitter yet as a way of drumming up new business? American Express and the software developer want to change that.

A joint promotion offered by the two companies offers $100 worth of Twitter advertising credits to the first 10,000 small or midsize businesses that sign up for the company's self-serve advertising platform. Yes, you did the math correctly: that's $1 million in free advertising, cumulatively speaking. The offer was made about 10 days ago, but apparently the companies are still accepting registrations. The catch is that you need to have an American Express business account to be considered.

Signing up will give your company exclusive access (for a time) into Twitter's self-service advertising platform, which currently is being tested by some larger companies. The new system is supposed to launch in late March and be broadly available to the general public in late 2012. But eligible small businesses that join up now to help test out the system before the launch can receive $100 in advertising credits.

"Small businesses were among the first to embrace Twitter as a way to connect and interact with consumers in real time," said Twitter CEO Dick Costolo in the press release announcing the promotion. "Today, we're announcing a simple way for small businesses to amplify their voices on Twitter and reach a new set of potential customers using our Promoted Products."

If your company is already using Facebook and Google advertising as a way to reach customer prospects, Twitter is definitely something your organization will want to consider as the developer makes its Promoted advertising platform available to much small companies than have historically had access. Amex really began luring small businesses with Facebook-related outreach in April 2011, so its expansion to Twitter is definitely noteworthy. Stay tuned for more information on what could potentially be another breakthrough in SMB marketing platforms.

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