Facebook dwarfed by Twitter’s mobile revenue – but for how long?
New figures from market research company eMarketer indicate that Twitter is on track to earn $129.7 million in mobile advertising revenue in 2012, $57 million more than Facebook, which will earn $72.7 million – a comparatively meagre sum considering its domination of the social market.
Twitter adverts are, by-and-large, virtually invisible compared to the gauche adverts splashed around on its blue and white peer, so what gives?
Platform gives. Facebook has been slow to push its mobile adverts, only introducing them this spring. It’s also widely accepted that its smartphone app can be, well, a bit difficult to look at. There’s a lot going on within those few square inches without cluttering up the display with ad banners, which would almost certainly turn off a lot of users (especially since 25% of internet users rely on smartphones rather than computers).
Twitter, on the other hand, offers a more aesthetically-pleasing app-viewing experience, and makes it easy for users to share content (news and adverts alike) by simply hitting the retweet button. It’s a slightly more laborious process doing the same through the Facebook app.
However, given the recency of Facebook’s introduction of mobile ads, and the fact that the site has almost double the users that Twitter does, it’s likely Facebook will catch up soon enough. According to eMarketer, by 2014 the site will be earning $629.4 million compared to Twitter’s $444.1 million.
No doubt both will look to Google for motivation in upping the ante. The search engine giant swamped both Facebook and Twitter in eMarketer’s report with an expected revenue of $1.42 billion from mobile advertising this year, accounting for 55% of the total mobile advertising market in the United States.