How to set up a Twitter advertising campaign

Marketing and brand

11 December 2017

An estimated 45% of British adults have a Twitter account, and 37% of those log in daily. Most people are there to read, making it a great place to grab people's attention.

And if you want to get your small business noticed on Twitter, you might want to try a paid Twitter advertising campaign.

To get you started, we’ll walk you through each step, offering some tips and tricks to help you get the most out of your budget.

Step one: choose your objective

Twitter has five main advert types, based around objectives.


Show your tweets to people who don't follow you yet, so they find out who you are.


Increase your Twitter following. According to Twitter's statistics, 75% of people have a more positive opinion of small and midsize businesses after finding and following them on Twitter.

Promoted video

Use a video to promote your business. If you don't have the budget to create a high-definition video, a slideshow is a low-budget alternative. The optimum length for a Twitter video is around 45 seconds.

Website clicks/conversions

This gets people off Twitter and onto your website, increasing your site traffic and e-commerce purchases.


Encourage people to like, retweet and click on your tweets.

Step two: set up the campaign

To set up a paid Twitter campaign, head to

On the campaign set-up page you should name your project – this will help you to track its results and measure it against any other Twitter ad campaigns you launch later.

You have the option of including a daily budget. With Twitter ads, you don't pay a penny until you achieve a campaign objective – for example when someone follows you (if you choose a followers campaign). Once you reach the daily budget cap, Twitter stops showing your advert.

You can set a total budget for the whole campaign, so it stops once that price is reached, regardless of the end date.

This page is also where you specify when the campaign should begin and end – ideal for Black Friday or Christmas adverts. Alternatively, you can get them to start immediately and run continuously, a great option if you're building awareness.

Step three: choose your content

Next, Twitter will ask you to choose the tweets you will use in the campaign. You can search through your existing tweets using keywords to find the perfect ones to boost.

You can also create a new tweet just for the campaign – click the pen icon to get writing.

Keep it short and sweet, use a relevant hashtag (or two) and include a nice image. Ask a question or include a poll to attract attention.

Step four: target your ads

Targeting gets your tweets in front of the people who you want to see them. You can drill down by gender, age and location to find your ideal customer.

It's possible to target followers of a particular Twitter account, such as a similar business to yours. You can also build a look-a-like audience. Import your customer database, and Twitter will advertise to people who are similar to them.

Step five: set your bid and budget

You have another chance to set a budget for the whole campaign, as well as how much you're willing to pay for every interaction. It's best to go for an automatic bid: this offers the best results for the best price, and is managed by Twitter. Don't worry – it won't go over your campaign budget cap.

And finally, all that's left to do is hit "launch"!

Next steps

For more information on how to use social media for your business, we’ve developed a step-by-step guide to social media marketing success, collecting some of the best guides and advice from leading experts.

You can also take a look at our social media advertising guide to find out about different social platforms like Twitter and Instagram.

If you have decided to take the leap and start a new business, make sure you, and your customers, are protected with AXA’s business insurance – starting from just £77 a year*.

*10% of our customers paid this or less between July and September 2017.