One of Twitter's main goals – just like Facebook or any other social network – is the find that perfect balance between advertising and a pleasant user experience. That's why the company is reportedly torn on whether or not to implement autoplay videos in users' timelines. That's why you hear Twitter execs discussing "ratios" all the time (one sponsored tweet per 20 organic tweets, for instance).
Now, Twitter's running a test that likely toes that line for many. As of now, Twitter is experimenting with putting ads in your profile.
Twitter is bringing promoted tweets, the app’s signature ad unit, to people’s profile pages as part of a new test. That means when you visit the page of another user, you may find a targeted Twitter ad waiting for you a few tweets into that user’s stream.
The ads are separated from other tweets by a small bumper that creates a break in the stream, and a label that reads “Suggested by Twitter” — you can see an example at the bottom of this post. A company spokesperson confirmed Twitter is testing the new ad placement.
These "targeted" ads are only appearing on a small fraction of profiles for now, and only showing up for logged-in users.
— That Matt Navarra (@MattNavarra) April 1, 2015
Of course, as Twitter gets further into this test, that could change. Not everyone that uses Twitter is an actual Twitter member – and the percentage of non-logged-in users visiting the site could increase greatly as real time tweets are reinserted into Google search results.