Brace yourselves, Canadians: Twitter Ads are coming to a timeline near you.

Post IPO-Twitter officially announced yesterday that its self-serve ad platform would now be available to small and medium sized businesses (SMBs) in Canada, the UK and Ireland.

Of course, Twitter hasn't been completely devoid of advertisements for Canadian users -- we've been on the receiving end of Promoted Tweets since 2010. Twitters announcement is mostly a game-changer for SMB marketing teams. Previously, Canadian businesses who wished to advertise via Twitter had to coordinate with Twitter and pay upwards of $15,000 per campaign.

Working similarly to Google AdWords, the self-serve ad system allows for brands to bid on keywords and hashtags to promote specific offers. The account is only charged when a person retweets, favourites or clicks on the Promoted Tweet, or follows the account as a result of the promotion. Notably, Twitter established that the user is entirely in control of their own budget, and an account is never charged for organic Twitter activity.

So, how can your business make use of Twitters ad services? The self-serve platform currently offers two services. Promoted Accounts can be used to build your Twitter community and increase your brands advocates and influencers. Promoted Tweets can be used to expand the reach of a specific message or offer, as well as engage with potential new followers.

Alongside these services are advanced targeting options (which will definitely be helpful, considering that Twitter has 230 million active users!). Brands can target their account and tweets by interest, keywords, geography, gender, similarity to existing followers, device (mobile/desktop), and keyword search results.

All you need is a Twitter account and a credit card to get started on Twitter Ads -- visit to set up your first campaign. With the holiday season upon us, this feature couldnt have come at a better time for SMBs!

How will your business use Twitter Ads? Let us know in the comments.