There has been much speculation about what Twitter's acquisition of the popular third party client TweetDeck means, with some in the industry predicting a new targeted ad product emerging from the acquisition.
That is not what executives at both companies are saying though. Rather they have alluded to more services for "heavy users," as the main outcome of the acquisition. "The mainstream Twitter user-base is well catered for by twitter.com and the official mobile clients," said TweetDeck CEO Iain Dodsworth in a blog post. "And by becoming part of the official platform, TweetDeck will now fill that role for brands, influencers, the highly active and anyone that just needs 'more power'."
Twitter CEO Dick Costolo, for his part, made similar references in his blog post on the transaction. "In order to support this important constituency, we will continue to invest in the TweetDeck that users know and love."
Targeting Power Users with Ads
Some see a more targeted advertising strategy unfolding, beyond just additional services. If Twitter can ensure access to these users and target advertising to them, that becomes powerful, Christopher Barcelona, Director of RI: Lab told the E-Commerce Times. "The power users' eyeballs are looking at their TweetDeck stream constantly, and if Twitter controls the ability to reach those eyeballs with meaningful ads, then that only helps justify their valuation."
Also, he continued, TweetDeck lets power users organize their "streams" of tweets into categories and lists based on topics and subject matter. "Imagine Twitter being able to leverage that data so that they aren't simply advertising to the power user segment but ensuring that advertising is extremely relevant based on information about the topics these users care about," he said to ECT News.
Tim Wilson, Measurement and Analytics director at RI: Lab and Barcelona's colleague told MarketingVOX the deal also holds implications for promoted trends and promoted tweets as well. "They've acquired greater control to how [these] get presented across the various TweetDeck clients."
That means advertisers can hold Twitter accountable for the user experience - and receptiveness - to their paid advertising when the user experiences it through twitter.com or a TweetDeck client. This is a subject that RI Lab has spent a lot of time thinking about - they held a podcast on the subject earlier this month even before the rumors of the acquisition began to churn.