Ben Shepherd writes: December Nielsen Netview data, released today, shows Facebook had 4.68m uniques during that month.
Myspace for the same time – 2.32m
This means Facebook has added 1.5m unique users in the 5 months leading up to December 08. In the same time, Myspace hasn’t added any new users, and has lost almost 650,000 since December of 2007.
For Facebook, who must be launching an AU office any second now (as they were recruiting for a Sales Director, Sales Execs, Sales Strategy etc in late September) these statistics would be encouraging.
This means Facebook is now a more popular service than YouTube, MSN Messenger, Hotmail, Ninemsn homepage and pretty much every other single web property aside Google search.
The problem is, how do you make money off Facebook? Right now the reception to their ad offering has been lukewarm at best … and there is a larger issue of how you define an audience to advertisers when you have so many users.
There’s also the issue of covering the costs of data/maintenance/engineering to maintain a service the scale of Facebook when the revenue just isn’t coming in the door.
Liam Walsh writes: I just scanned FB and it looks like the Head of Sales is gone. Wonder if this means it has been filled or removed.
There is no question that social media find revenue from advertising much harder than traditional businesses due to the inherent bias towards traditional media. It can have the feel of advertising on a sandwich wrapper.
There is a preception that FB don’t like display advertising and that contemporary thinking around advertising is backward. Whether they be right or wrong, swimming against the current coupled with enormous over-supply of inventory makes FB a risky proposition in a recession lead global economy.