You may have become familiar with sponsored tweets appearing in your Twitter timeline, but you wouldn't have seen sponsored Twitter trends appearing - until now that is.

For if you look at the current trending topics on your Twitter home page you will see the promoted trend "Toy Story 3", obviously paid for by Pixar, at the bottom of the pile, highlighted with the yellow "promoted" box.

sponsored tweets the new trend image 2

A Twitter representative told TechCrunch: “As we have always said, we plan to test different advertising and promotional models in these early stages of our monetisation efforts for both user and brand value. As part of this effort, we are testing trends clearly marked as “promoted” for an undefined period of time”.

Clicking the trend will take you to a timeline of all the related tweets, as per any other trend topic, except with a sponsored tweet appearing at the top.

Really, it's just a clever way of businesses creating public discourse for their products. If it's kept to a minimum and doesn't become too abrasive then we think it's a pretty smart addition to the service.