X, formerly Twitter, announced today that advertisers will soon be able to run ads next to certain content creators. The move will allow advertisers to ensure that their ads don’t run next to controversial or offensive content. The launch of the new offering comes as numerous brands pulled their ads from X last year after their ads appeared next to pro-Nazi content.
“Starting this month, advertisers on X can run ads against a curated list of premium content creators via Creator Targeting,” the company wrote in a blog post. “This means giving advertisers more control to be able to use the self-serve X Ads Manager to run pre-roll video ads against the video content of their chosen creator(s) in both the home timeline and profile.”
X soon plans to add the ability for brands to serve ads only on an individual creator’s profile, completely eliminating the likelihood of their ads appearing next to unwanted to controversial posts.
Since Elon Musk purchased the social network in 2022, advertisers have been concerned about their ads appearing on the platform, especially since its content moderation policies have been significantly loosened. A few months ago, notable companies like Apple and Disney paused their ad spending on X after Musk amplified antisemitic conspiracy theories on the platform.
Musk lashed out at the brands, and even told them to “go f*ck yourself” onstage during a New York Times DealBook interview. Two days after the incident, a report by the Financial Times said that X was turning to small and medium-sized advertisers to shore up revenue after Musk alienated big brands.
Today’s announcement is likely an attempt at luring back advertisers to X, as its advertising revenue has taken a significant hit ever since Musk took the reigns of the company. X’s advertising revenue plunged by 50% last year, as it was estimated to have brought in around $2.5 billion throughout 2023, falling short of its $3 billion target. The social network generated around $600 million per quarter in 2023, a significant decrease compared to the $1 billion brought in per quarter in 2022.
It’s worth noting that today’s announcement could also be seen as a way for X to lure creators to its platform and take on YouTube, which is something that the company has been focusing on recently. X says that since launching its ad revenue sharing program last July, more than 80,000 creators have shared their content on the platform.
Musk has been trying to get prominent creators to share content on X, and directly asked popular YouTube creator MrBeast to post his content on the social network last month. MrBeast later revealed that he made $263,000 in ad revenue from posting his first video on X, but said he believed the number was “a bit of a facade.”
Last September, X CEO Linda Yaccarino revealed that the platform paid out nearly $20 million to creators.