Twitter Inc (NYSE:TWTR) has launched a new advertising service that encourages users to install mobile apps. Twitter said that it is releasing mobile-app install ads to the wider ad communicate after running tests for several months.
The ads will appear in Twitter’s news feeds and will provide links directly to apps on Google Play or the Apple App Store. Over the last few months, Twitter users said that they may have seen ads to download apps like Square or Spotify. Users have also seen ads for games like Heroes of Dragon Age and Real Racing 3. Twitter said that the tests went well.
Twitter generates most of its revenue from ads, which more than doubled in Q1 to $250.5 million. Twitter still has to hit profitability though.
Facebook launched mobile-app install ads in late 2012 and it has been driving substantial revenue for the company. In fact, it generated up to 59% of its total revenue in the first quarter. This is up from 30% a year earlier. Advertisers can target users based on age, location, gender, and interest.
The ads will be served through Twitter’s MoPub, which is a mobile ad exchange that can reach over 1 billion unique devices. Twitter’s ads used to be text-heavy, but it has been replaced with “cards,” which are expandable tweets that supports rich media.