Worldwide social network ad revenues will reach $5.54 billion this year, eMarketer estimates, with just under half that amount, $2.74 billion, coming from the US market.
Revenue growth is solidly in the double digits in the US, but even more rapid growth elsewhere will mean spending outside the country will account for a slightly greater share each year. By 2013, non-US revenues will make up 51.9% of the total, which will hit nearly $10 billion worldwide. In the US, social networks will make $4.81 billion from ads that year.
The bulk of these dollars, in the US and around the world, will go to Facebook, while a much smaller share will go to Twitter and other social networks. eMarketer’s first forecast of ad revenues for LinkedIn predicts the site will account for 3% of worldwide social network ad revenues this year, with $140.8 million. The site has more than tripled its ad dollars in two years, though growth is tapering off.
A great summary of the way brands are approaching Google+ and what is in it for them from Andrew Blakeley @ The Wall Blog
– They don’t see this as a “Facebook killer” and said several times during the meeting, “you’ll still need Facebook, and you’ll still need Twitter”
– They don’t see it as as social network, rather a social enhancement to the whole web. One day everyone will need a G+ account because it’s practically impossible to use the internet without using Google owned sites.
– It’ll be nice and open for competitions for brands, UNLESS they are trying to use them to gain +1s on their content, in order to affect search results. You will be able to use inclusion in Circles as an incentive for contests.
– The +1 Button is going to be huge. By owning a brand page and using +1 Buttons on your other owned sites, you create a link between them, demonstrating that they are official, and improving search rankings.
– +1 Buttons will appear on all ads in the Google Display Network. +1ing them will count towards the final landing URL. Users will be served more relevant ads than ever, based on their friends’ +1s and ad clicks.
– Circles will be great for segmentation. Brands will be able to segment their users into different circles and push out different messages to each.
– G+ will be a testing ground for ideas – trying them on a small circle of fans – say 100 – and seeing how that goes before pushing an idea to the entire consumer base.
– Hangouts are the main distinction from Facebook. The ability to host hangouts with fans, and consumers, and then publish them to YouTube for the whole world to see is likely to become much more normal. Only 10-15 may be able to participate at once, but thousands can watch a “stadium” hangout.
– People are already using Hangouts innovatively, from Dolly Parton chatting to fans, to hosting focus groups, to creating a remote baby-sitting tool.
– Another thing that may be useful for brands is the Android App and Instant Upload – imagine being at a brand event and being able to put the pics up, for everyone who couldn’t make it, in seconds.
– The Android app and Instant Upload will make brand events more instantly shareable to the web. Imagine being at a brand event and being able to put the pics up, for everyone who couldn’t make it, in seconds, without having to go through any complicated upload sequences.
The level to which we are forced to censor ourselves is even more damaging than our social media-induced group-think. Most people are afraid to be completely honest with what we share, because of the capricious nature of the public. This makes us innocuous caricatures who live in fear of offending anyone. Social media sharing is a lot like a temperamental boss who tells you to speak freely. His words say one thing, but the reality is he might fire you if he doesn’t like what he hears. To protect yourself, you only tell him the good news and any negative feedback is conveniently omitted. Counter to James Surowieki who pointed out the wisdom of crowds, this combined group-think and fear of public judgment is the tyranny of crowds. And this tyranny clouds our thinking and stifles innovation.
Editor’s note: Software companies talk to their customers about collaboration, but do they deliver it in their own operations? Historically, most have focused heavily on the concept of small teams and everybody getting into a room and solving issues. Collaboration was real time, face-to-face and ad hoc. But the exigencies of today’s market, the market opportunity, and how software has matured creates interesting scenarios. Sandhill.com asked Ram Menon, EVP at TIBCO to share his opinion on social sprawl and what companies need to evaluate to block out the noise and start getting down to business.
The Sunday night we all learned Osama bin Laden had been killed, I was playing a quiet game of chess with my 10-year-old son. My phone vibrated in my pocket. I picked it up to see a Facebook message from my neighbor, who first informed me of the news. As I waited for my son to make his next move, I watched a flood of information wash over me via Facebook and Twitter messages shared by friends.
For me, this served as another quintessential example of how social technologies have transformed the way we communicate and consume information. Not too many years ago, I would have had to be watching television or listening to the radio to learn news of a similar magnitude in real time. Now, I simply let the information flow to my fingertips.
So, when you come to work, you probably hear some say, “You should replicate Facebook inside of your company. It’s the new wave! It’s the revolution that will automatically transform your business!”
It all sounds nice. The problem is it’s a farce.
The truth is, early attempts to bring social networking inside companies as a work tool have failed. They have failed because they lack a pragmatic focus on the business process, systems, and culture that actually makes companies operate (and make money). Free social computing tools – which almost gleefully don’t understand the needs of businesses – fall on their face after a few months of use because people don’t actually get their work done in them. They’re the proverbial “extra thing I gotta check.” And if they’re not working in them, why log in anymore?