CBS Sees Potential for Mid-Market Advertisers in Twitter Amplify

Media giant is latest conquest

To say that David Morris, CBS Interactive chief customer officer, is bullish on Twitter would be an understatement. The media exec called Twitter "the No. 1 social network in the world"—no mention of little old Facebook—while revealing his company had joined the Twitter Amplify program at Advertising Week today in New York.

While Twitter has inked similar deals with Turner, ESPN, Fox, BBC America, MTV and The Weather Channel, CBS seems to have unusually big plans for Amplify. Morris said, in addition to CBS TV, his company will leverage the Twitter relationship when selling advertising to properties such as CNET, TV Guide,, Gamespot and CBS Fantasy Football.

"It's a big opportunity to get big advertisers with big budgets," Morris told Adweek after his presentation. "But I also want to sell to that mid-market with some of our smaller brands."

The exec wouldn't identify brands that have jumped on board already, though he said his sales team has worked with Twitter to secure cross-channel ad packages with buyers from the technology, consumer-packaged goods, insurance and quick-service categories.

It's probably fair to suspect that CBS' NFL and college football sponsors will be the first to try out Twitter Amplify. In a world where consumers increasingly watch television programming on their own time thanks to recording technology, live sports is one of the last sure things left when it comes to real-time broadcasting. And Twitter Amplify depends on real-time events.

Ford Fusion has advertised on the platform via ESPN, while Heineken recently appeared in the U.S. Open's video-enhanced tweets for tennis highlights. Generally, such brands appear within a Promoted Tweet while also getting pre-roll video spots.

Meanwhile, Twitter's transformation during the last year or so from a pure social media platform to the television industry's BFF has been impressive.

"As we sit side by side on those sales calls, people nod their heads up and down because they get it," Morris explained.

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