Have you wondered what social media ads are possible beyond Facebook ads? I’ve used Twitter advertising for myself and my clients throughout the years and have created this blog to give you a basic walk-through of the process and tips I’ve learned.


Get Started with Twitter Ads

Like Facebook, Twitter offers a robust advertising platform with several ad types and the opportunity to retarget your customers. Twitter ads don’t seem to have the same targeting precision as Facebook ads, but if your audience is on Twitter these ads should not be ignored. The lifespan of a Tweet is super-fast so advertising can go a long way toward helping your profile and messaging stand out. Similar to Facebook ads, Twitter ads can be a bit confusing. This blog post is just meant to scratch the surface and get you started.


Start by Selecting Your Ad Objective

Your initial step for Twitter ads is to create a campaign that is in line with your marketing objectives. Below is your list of choices. Select the one that best fits the goals of your ad.

While running through these steps chronologically makes sense, I’ve found that during the ad creation phase it’s easy to lose your place in the set-up process.  I’ve learned to create my ad copy in advance of the steps below.  I recommend you prepare your ad copy and images before setting up the ad.


Click on the blue button in the upper right corner to upload your ad copy in a basic tweet format. After creating the ad you can save it as a “Promoted-Only” Tweet by checking the small box on the bottom left of your Tweet Composer. This will make it easier to select your ad creative later.


After you’ve chosen your ad objective, you will be led through Twitter’s 4 steps for creating your ad. The four major steps for setting up Twitter ads are below. We will walk through each of these in detail.

  • Create Your Campaign
  • Create Your Ad Group
  • Set Your Budget
  • Choose Your Creative


Step 1: Create Your Campaign

The Create Your Campaign section includes naming your campaign, setting the budget and scheduling your ad dates.

I always set start and end dates for ads because it’s important to stop and review the performance of your ad.  Setting your ad’s end date is a good opportunity to do so. You can always go back in and extend the ad end date if it’s performing well.

Step 2: Create Your Ad Group

If you’ve done other social ads, you are familiar with the ad structure of campaign level, ad group level, and then ad creative level. As you drill down through the levels, you are able to plan more details about your ad. This also allows you to create multiple variations of each ad group and creative, which is helpful for split-testing.

In the Ad Group area, you have the option of setting the budget and timing of your Ad Group as well as the bid type and optimization preference. I find it’s usually best to stick with the defaults for the bid type and optimization settings.


Step 3: Choose Your Ad Creative

In this area, you can set up your creatives. If you haven’t set up your ads yet, you will need to do that here. If you’ve already set up your ad copy and uploaded your images, you can simply choose the “Promoted-Post” option in the drop-down menu and grab the ad creatives you want to use, as shown with the red arrow.


In this section, you also decide the placements for where you want your ads to appear, as shown in the red box on the image. Depending on your ad type some options may not be available to you.

You may also have the option to expand your reach on the Twitter Audience platform. The Twitter Audience Platform is the network of thousands of mobile apps on the Twitter Platform.  Choosing this option also requires you to select the category of your ad and enter the domain name of the ad.


Step 3: Find Your Audience

You will set your ad targeting in the Find Your Audience section. If you have set up a custom audience for Twitter in the past, you can choose it here. Otherwise, you can select the age, range, gender, location, language, and technology of your target audience.

Scroll down to the Audience Features section where you can get granular about your targeting. “Features” is a catch-all term for selecting the following for your target audience: Behaviors, Interests, Conversation topics, Follower look-alikes, Keywords and Movie and TV Shows. This is a hefty list of choices to weed through. I recommend testing a few specific audience targeting groups before you dedicate a sizable budget to your ad.

In the past Twitter allowed advertisers to target people who were followers of a specific account, rather than the look-alike follower options, as seen below. I’m in the process of testing the look-alike option, but I do know that targeting followers was an effective strategy in the past.

Targeting by followers requires you to do some research before you set up the ad.  Prepare a list of the thought leaders and influencers that have a dedicated following of people in your niche market. Once you type in an account name, you can opt for Twitter to suggest some similar accounts.

Another new feature here is the ability to show your ads to people who have seen or engaged with your account before, including people who have watched 50% of your videos, or engaged with certain Twitter ads you’ve run in the past.

Final step: Review and Complete

In this area you simply review your ad. Twitter gives you all the details in one place, so you can reread your settings before you begin your campaign.


Clearly, this blog only scratches the surface of the many opportunities Twitter advertising holds for any business. If you’d like to learn more or have questions, let me know in the form below and we can set up a time to chat.


Marketing Staircase Newsletter


Social media marketing and advertising is constantly changing! Want a little help staying in the know? We keep up on the latest trends so you don't have to. Sign up to get our latest articles, tips, and strategies sent to your inbox. It's not hype - it's help. We promise.

You have Successfully Subscribed!