Twitter’s Wednesday release of conversion tracking is the company’s latest direct-response push.
Beta advertisers, including retailer Alex and Ani, food-delivery and takeout service GrubHub Seamless and political agency Targeted Victory, used the tool to measure ROI on Twitter ad campaigns.
Targeted Victory initiated CPA campaigns to meet a target number of “sign-ups” for a National Republican Senatorial Committee drive, while GrubHub Seamless worked to meet revenue goals on a cost-per-order basis.
Conversion tracking is designed to let marketers create tags around specific business actions, such as a purchase or filling out a form. Once a consumer or user reaches, for instance, a purchase confirmation or form-completion page, the tag activates, allowing marketers to assess how engagement on a Twitter post led to a desired action.
A key element of Twitter’s conversion tracking measures post-engagement and post-view actions after a consumer expands, retweets, favorites, follows or clicks on a link in a promoted tweet, even if these actions occur cross-device.
Twitter uses user login information to record engagement of a promoted tweet on an iOS or Android device. If that user converts on a desktop computer where there’s an unexpired Twitter cookie, Twitter can attribute the conversion back to the initial mobile engagement.
Conversion tracking, which was developed solely in-house, is not the social network’s first attempt at showing attribution. Twitter experimented in the past with offline-to-online conversion tracking with the help of Datalogix. Thirty-five brands in the CPG space tested an offline-sales lift feature that determined the extent to which promoted content influenced in-store sales.
In this instance, Datalogix, which fosters relationships with 1,500 retailers, was able to match up user database and CRM information anonymously with hashed Twitter IDs to marry that offline transaction data with online actions.
Early Twitter advertisers seem to share the same consensus -- its marketing toolset is getting increasingly sophisticated. Although unable to elaborate further on the Conversion Tracking beta, Zac Moffatt, cofounder of Targeted Victory said his agency managed more than $3 million last year in Twitter ad spend on behalf of the political organizations his company manages media campaigns for.
Twitter's in a unique position because of its mobile push with MoPub as well as its various ad betas that attract key advertisers in what can almost be described as an incubation period and feedback-loop.
"I think everyone's trying to figure out how the direct-response [piece] works because that's where the dollars are on a consistent basis," Moffatt said. "If [Twitter] can crack direct-response, they'll crush it in our space."