Twitter finally has a paid subscription product — but it’s only for advertisers

on Jul29

Jack Dorsey, co-founder and chief executive officer of Twitter Inc.,

David Paul Morris | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Jack Dorsey, co-founder and chief executive officer of Twitter Inc.,

Twitter has a new business idea: It wants to charge advertisers a monthly fee for the company to handle all of their promoted tweets.

That means a business would pay Twitter $99 per month to pick and choose which of its tweets to promote.

“This program will do the heavy lifting,” Twitter wrote on its website. “You just need to continue using Twitter as you normally do — Tweeting updates, links, and media that you want a larger audience to see. Then, the promotion of your Tweets will be automated.”

Twitter made public the new setup on Friday, and says it is just a test that requires interested accounts to apply.

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Twitter’s hope is to attract small businesses that might not otherwise go through the process of setting up their own advertising campaigns. The program is not limited to business accounts — regular users could apply, too — but businesses are the target audience.

The question is how many businesses are willing to hand over control of which tweets get promoted and which don’t. Under the new program, Twitter would have full control over that. And it’s unclear how many promoted tweets businesses will get for their $99, and what kind of reach is guaranteed, if any.

But Twitter is trying to get more small-business advertisers, and it thinks a one-size-fits-all approach might help.

By Kurt Wagner,

CNBC’s parent NBCUniversal is an investor in Recode’s parent Vox, and the companies have a content-sharing arrangement.

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