Sponsored tweets aren’t about replacing traditional ads, but about “creating a kind of surround-sound on different platforms,” said Annie Heckenberger, a vice president at the ad agency Red Tettemer O’Connell + Partners. Even if the tweets never go viral or attract traditional media attention, getting 10 cat lovers whose candid snapshots are huge on their blogs to do sponsored posts is cheaper than buying an ad in “Catster.” Want to reach sports-minded young men? Skip the Super Bowl ad and go after the YouTubers whose goofy videos of underwater Nerf gunfights got over 100,000 hits. Got a dress to sell? Pray that Vogue features it — or pay 50 influential Instagrammers to wear it, and watch it fly off the racks.
Jennifer Weiner, “The Cost of Buying Someone’s Soul. Or Tweets”, The New York Times (26 April 2015), SR4.