Twitter Launches Ad That Can Collect Personal Information for Marketers

'Lead Generation Card' Comes Pre-Filled With Email, Name, Twitter Handle

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Twitter announced a new kind of Tweet today designed to allow marketers to easily collect personal information from Twitter users, if they chose to provide it.

The format, an expanded Tweet called the "Lead Generation Card," includes a button that with one click allows the user to provide their name, email address and Twitter handle to the marketer as a request for a deal, more information or further communication.

The format is designed to help businesses collect leads -- those interested in more information about a product or a service. It's the latest "Twitter Card," an expanded Tweet that contains content far beyond the 140-character limitation of Twitter messages, including images and video.

Any advertiser can use the "Lead Generation Card," but that card can also be turned into a "Promoted Tweet" or an ad in the form of a Tweet. Like all Twitter ads, advertisers pay when there's an action: a re-tweet, favorite, reply or, in this case, a click or conversion.

Until now, marketers wishing to do this would include a link to a landing page, a layer of complexity that turned away prospects. "We are bringing the landing page into the Tweet and it's essentially pre-filled," said Twitter senior director of revenue products Kevin Weil at Luma Partners' Digital Media Summit in New York City.

The first advertisers to give this a try are Priceline, which is offering travel deals and the opportunity to receive email updates, a software company New Relic, and for-profit university Full Sail. A host of business marketers are using the format to allow users to sign up to receive white papers.

Mr. Weil said a number of startups had used the service as a means to recruit beta testers.

Right now the format is only available to Twitter's managed ad clients but will soon be available to small and mid-sized business that use Twitter's self-serve ad platform.

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