Hootsuite’s Ryan Holmes has a post on LinkedIn regarding how we should resign ourselves to the increasing presence of ads in our social media streams (including self-playing video ads).


Based on how effective these paid messages are, you’re going to see more and more of them.

“The numbers don’t lie. More and more businesses are using Promoted Tweets and Facebook posts because they work. While traditional banner ads are now pretty much ignored (clicked on 0.2 percent of the time), Promoted Tweets show engagement of one to three percent— up to 15 times as effective.”

Based on my own experience, I think the higher click rate on promoted messages is from people mistaking them for actual messages, not paid ads. I don’t blame the social networks for doing this — they have to pay for their networks somehow, but I think over time the clicks /likes will decline as readers wise up to the ads. Honestly, it’s a tactic not much different than that “I saw shocking this photo of you” social spam out there.

It’s early yet, so just the risk takers are out there, but as more people glom onto this ad approach, I guarantee you these paid messages get cluttered with the same lazy pitches that turned banners into “win an iPad!”, “take this survey”, “click the monkey” noise that everyone now ignores.

Smart advertisers will realize that having something of value to offer will provide far more traction than paying to promote your tweet to the top of someone’s stream.

See the article on LinkedIn