To date, the fight for social ad dollars has mostly been between Facebook and Twitter. (Yes, other small players are doing their native thing, and yes, the market is becoming increasingly fragmented, but Twitter and Facebook remain the two biggies.)
Facebook has dominated, thanks to its vast ecosystem of more than 260 service providers helping advertisers spend money on the platform. Buying ads on Twitter has not had the aid of this wide array of SaaS tools.
To buy a Promoted Tweet, Promoted Trend or Promoted Account, advertisers who don’t want to go through a sales representative must use Twitter’s self-service tool. It exists only on Twitter.com and it is purposely simple. A little too simple, as I discovered when I tried a $20 ad campaign last year. Questions of effectiveness aside, the tools lacked basic functionality that even an unsophisticated advertiser such as myself wanted.