Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Facebook's rivals and initial public earnings report

Last week, Facebook reached 1 billion monthly users, and made it's first earnings report since it went public - $1.18 billion in revenues in the second quarter.  Advertising accounted for $992 million, up 28% from the same quarter last year.  While revenues were up 32%, Facebook reported net losses of $157 million, mostly from various costs and write-offs related  to the IPO - without those, Facebook earned a profit of $285 million.  The report indicated that mobile earnings were slow to develop, but earnings were up from "sponsored stories,"

As for the (distant) competition, there's

  • Google+, with a reported 170 million users as of last May,  Facebook's already integrated one of Google+'s innovative features (Circles, which allowed users to separate business from social contacts).  For now, though, Google+ users indicate they like that services cleaner interface (fewer ads) and integration with other Google services.
  • LinkedIn has a reported user base of 150 million, and has focused on building a social network for working professionals.
  • Twitter has a reported 555 million users, and a quite different pedigree and focus.  Technically a microblogging service, it's becoming the preferred service for quickly sharing content.  (Sometimes too quickly). Users also like Twitter's better record of keeping private information private.
  • Pinterest has about 11 million users, and also provides a different type of content sharing - providing its users with a sort of virtual bulletin board where they can post pictures and other things.
  • is a new social media offering from Microsoft.  With the announcement that Windows Office will integrate more social-oriented features, and their introduction of SharePoint collaboration software, this may be the outlet for Microsoft's social features.
Facebook also has major competition in some foreign markets from native-language-based social media services.

Sources -  5 Facebook Rivals Hot On Its Heels, the Brainyard
Facebook Reports $1.18 Billion Revenues, Mobile Progress,  the Brainyard

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