Today in Social

Facebook updated its S-1 with first quarter data. Ad revenues grew 37 percent to $872 million, well on pace to meet my forecast that Facebook would double projected U.S. growth rates for online display. But Q1 was down from Q4, a sign of natural industry seasonality, if a bit of a slap in the face for a potential growth star. PaidContent turns a lot of that into useful charts. Henry Blodget thinks Facebook looks sluggish compared with Google. Meanwhile, fees collected off Credits grew faster (98 percent to $186 million) than advertising, though Zynga’s overall contribution to Facebook, while growing, shrank as a percentage. Zynga’s 15 percent total includes 4 points of ad revenues. The way Facebook counts revenues (by audience rather than ad buyer), it showed that half its revenues were outside North America. That’s not where all the growth will come from, however. Facebook said it managed to increase ad pricing in the U.S. a little, but not enough to overcome smaller revenues per ad from overseas markets. That ratio will continue. But this Dove Australian app campaign is brilliant, and it’s actual social marketing, not just cheap display ads. Facebook needs to capture revenues from things like this.

Relevant Analyst
P1040724

David Card

VP Research Gigaom Research

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