Twitter: Active user numbers up, more ads on the horizon

Twitter has seen a surge in the number of active users, Twitter exec Dick Costolo said on Thursday.

Twitter has seen a serious surge in the number of regular users.

Twitter, ascendant. In a press conference at Twitter HQ on Thursday, chief exec Dick Costolo announced that Twitter now attracts approximately 100 million active users – users who log in once a month – up an astonishing 82 percent from the beginning of this year. Furthermore, Costolo added, a full half of those active users are signing onto Twitter once a day (although not all active or daily users, as PC World points out, are actually tweeting).

These are big numbers, obviously, and in the tech world, they have prompted the obvious question: When will Twitter, which has long been loathe to pepper its site with ads, finally begin ramping up its advertising efforts? And Costolo has the answer: Soon. "We now feel that based on the engagement rates we're seeing... that we're ready to expand this further," Costolo said of Twitter's ads, according to Reuters.

The trick, of course, will be how Twitter – a site known for its simple and intuitive interface – decides to display the advertisements.

"Twitter already failed once with the Quick Bar, a short-lived feature of its iPhone app that occasionally showed promoted trending topics on top of users' timelines," writes Jared Newman of PC World. "Now, the company is experimenting with Promoted Tweets, which show sponsored messages from brands you already follow near the top of your timeline. And soon, Twitter will expand Promoted Tweets to include companies you don't follow."

The trick, Newman says, will be to find a way to "advertise in a way that doesn't upset users." Over at Venture Beat, Jolie O'Dell says the company may opt for targeted ad campaigns, like the ones on Facebook. The ads, O'Dell reports, would be aimed at "consumers who, because of location or expressed interests, are more likely to respond to a given call to action."

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