Twitter is said to be readying an ad exchange that would let marketers target ads directly at users who have visited their Web sites.
According to AdAge, Twitter is hoping to challenge Facebook's own so-called re-targeting exchange, otherwise known as FBX. AdAge cited sources familiar with the project.
Since at least late last year, the company has met with several FBX partners who are well-versed in locating on Facebook people who had previously visited a brand's site and retargeting them with non-standard display ads on the social network, in hopes of luring them back to the brand site. It works by by pinging a partner when a cookied user visits Facebook so that the partner can bid to target ads to that user on the social network. The talks are early but ongoing, and Twitter has not briefed potential partners on a planned launch date.
If the AdAge report is accurate, the move would be Twitter's latest attempt to bolster its advertising program, its main source of revenue. The company's success at making money through advertising is thought to be a key to whether it pursues an IPO, which some say could happen as early as next year. Twitter did not immediately respond to a CNET request for comment.