Gender targeting for Promoted Products now available

Thursday, 25 October 2012

We’ve frequently heard from marketers that you’d like to be able to target your Promoted Products campaigns by gender. It’s a tough feature for us to pull off since we don’t ask people to share their gender on Twitter, and some people don’t identify themselves by gender anyway. Further, we’re not aware of any “male” or “female” businesses or organizations. 

Despite these factors, we believe there’s value to having more contextual signals, including gender, so that messages reach the most relevant audience. Just as marketers don’t want their ads to reach people who aren’t interested in their message, people don’t want to see mistargeted ads. 

We’ve been working on using a variety of signals that could help us understand our users’ gender reliably, while maintaining the simplicity of the Twitter profile that our users value. These signals have proven effective in inferring gender, so starting today, we are making gender targeting available to all marketers.

Similar to our approach to interest targeting, we’re able to understand gender by taking public signals users offer on Twitter, such as user profile names or the accounts she or he follows. We have strong confidence in this approach. A panel of human testers has found our predictions are more than 90 percent accurate for our global audience. And where we can’t predict gender reliably, we don’t — and those users won’t be targetable through this feature.

We think marketers will find many interesting uses for this feature, which will in turn lead to a better experience for users. For example, a beauty brand could deliver a Promoted Tweet to women about a new line of cosmetics without having its message delivered to men not likely to be interested in that content. 

Along with our recent additions in targeting options, including geo, interest and mobile, gender targeting is yet another way for marketers to reach a more specific audience directly, and to get more value out of advertising on Twitter.

Posted by
April Underwood (@aunder)
Product Manager, Revenue