Facebook Gets All The Money (Well, About Two-Thirds, Anyway)

11 Feb

Interesting to see how many Facebook users are in other countries. Originally posted by The Social Graf.

by Erik Sass, Friday, February 4, 2011, 4:30 PM


The online economy, for all its chaotic variety, still seems to produce dominant — or even monopolistic — companies, which take the lion’s share of revenues in their markets. In 2009 Google raked in $23.7 billion, or 79% of a total search market of just over $30.1 billion. Now a similar dynamic is emerging in the burgeoning world of social media.

That’s according to eMarketer, which predicts that total social media revenues will reach $6 million in 2011, including $3.1 billion in the U.S. — with social networking behemoth Facebook taking $4 billion of the global total and $2.2 billion of the U.S. revenues. That works out to 67% and 71% of the global and U.S. markets, respectively.

The same forecast sees some interesting trends developing: for one thing, eMarketer sees the proportion of revenues coming from overseas increasing substantially over the next couple years. In 2009, overseas advertising contributed just $180 million or 24.3% of Facebook’s total revenues of $740 million. That increased to $650 million or 35% of total ad revenues of $1.86 billion in 2010. The 2011 figure represents 46% of Facebook’s total ad revenues. And in 2012, Facebook’s total revenues will climb to $5.74 billion, with overseas revenues contributing exactly half, also according to eMarketer.

As noted in previous columns, Facebook’s penetration of foreign markets is actually very uneven. Where Facebook has attracted around 150 million users in the U.S. — just about half the U.S. population — the rate is much lower in countries like Japan (1.6% of the population), Brazil (4.7%), Russia (3.2%), and India (1.7%).

However penetration is higher in other parts of the world: the U.K. had the highest rate, with 28.4 million members out of a population of 62 million, for 46% penetration; Turkey has 24.1 million Facebook members out of a total population of 74.8 million, for 32% penetration; and Indonesia has 32 million Facebook members out of a total population of 238 million, for 13.4% penetration.

Meet Erik Sass at OMMA Global SF!

Erik Sass will be there speaking during “OMMA Social Conversation: When Will Social Media Actually Make Money? (And How?)” on February 28 at 4:45 PM. Top executives will be there. Will you?
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