John Chow, a Vancouver, British Columbia-based blogger and Internet entrepreneur, received about $3,000 in October for using his Twitter account to send his 50,000 followers links to blog posts on behalf of corporate clients such as M&M’s, Charter Communications and the Make a Wish Foundation. And celebrities such as Kim Kardashian, Dr. Drew and Ernie Halter can earn up to $10,000 for sending a single message to their hundreds of thousands of followers. The New York Times took a detailed look at the use of social networks for advertising messages.
Bigger companies are getting into the act, as well, with the Times reporting that Amazon.com will allow users who sign up for its Amazon Associates program to receive commissions for referring Twitter followers to the retail site.
Peer Squared co-founder Joey Caroni told the Times:
We don’t want to create an army of spammers, and we are not trying to turn Facebook and Twitter into one giant spam network. All we are trying to do is get consumers to become marketers for us.
Technology blogger Robert Scoble, however, told the Times he removes people who send him ads from the list of Twitter accounts he follows, adding, “It interferes with your relationship with your friends and your audience.”