Twitter has taken another step towards providing more assurance for advertisers around ad placement with the announcement that it's earned the Trustworthy Accountability Group (TAG) Brand Safety Certified Seal.
As explained by Twitter:
"The TAG Brand Safety Certified program sets global brand safety standards that apply to digital advertising agreements, monetized content takedown practices, the use of inclusion/exclusion lists, and the documentation of specific policies and procedures used to minimize the risk of ad misplacement. These standards impact direct buyers, direct sellers and intermediaries. This certification affords advertisers and agencies the assurance that Twitter has been independently audited to ensure compliance with TAG’s guidelines."
Twitter has been working to improve its brand safety and assurance measures over the past few months, via its partnerships with DoubleVerify and Integral Ad Science. In December, the platform announced its intention to seek accreditation from the Media Ratings Council (MRC), covering viewability and audience measurement, as well as ad placement. Twitter's still working towards achieving the MRC stamp, but the added approval from TAG adds another element in the platform's brand safety push.
The issue of brand placement came to the fore back in 2017 when YouTube lost millions of dollars in revenue after major brands pulled their YouTube spend over concerns that their ads were appearing alongside extremist content and hate speech. Since then, all platforms have been working to provide more assurance on this front, and these official, third-party verification steps ensure that brands can put more trust in their programs, and have assurance that their promotions are not incorrectly associated with controversial content.
Of course, that's not easy to do. Social media engagement occurs in real-time, and to ensure effective brand safety, and optimal reach, the platforms need sophisticated systems to detect and automate such. The tools on this front are always evolving - which, again, is why these third-party endorsements are important in the broader scheme.