The big news this week has been Facebook’s floatation, and news this morning confirming its value at $104 billion, or 107 times trailing 12-month earnings, making the social network more costly than almost every company in the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index (Amazon having teh highest worth). With such a high price ticket, Facebook is going to have to prove its worth to investors early, and so advertising continues to be the word on everyone’s lips, especially as General Motors announced earlier in the week that they would be ceasing to advertise on Facebook as a result for poor results.
Mobile is Facebook’s admitted advertising Achilles’ heel because more users on mobile means fewer opportunities to serve ads owing to the way the mobile platform is set up, so with mobile monthly active users steadily increasing over computer access, especially in the 18-and-up smartphone audience in the USA (which topped 78 million unique visitors in March, meaning network reached more than 80% of all American adults via mobile in that month), it is hardly a surprise Facebook reported a drop in ad revenue during those same months. Presumably they have a squandron of developers working hard to sort the problem, but now they have floated, the clock is well and truly ticking.
This week also saw interesting data released about Twitter, with the UK coming in fourth in the ‘Twitter love’ stakes (USA is first) and stats indicating that 80% of Twitter users in the UK were accessing Twitter via mobile.
And staying on the subject of mobiles, Virgin Atlantic announced this week that some passengers will now be able to make and receive phone calls and text messages while in the air. Ironically, reaction on Twitter was less than enthusiastic, many saying that the break from mobile being the best thing about airflights!
In other news the Cabinet Office has launched social media guidance for civil servants; Foursquare now have a full history page, sort of their version of timeline showing where you have been since you joined the network; and in the hotel industry’s 5th Annual Benchmark Survey on Hotel Digital Marketing Budget Planning and Best Practices, released this week, survey results indicate that 43% hoteliers believe social media produces best results & highest ROI.
And finally social media comes to the teaching profession, with Teachers pay Teachers, an open social marketplace set up in the USA now enabling teachers to make money by selling their lesson plans and prep to other teachers, claiming that one Kindergarten teacher has earnt $700,000 by selling lesson plans online. Let’s hope they expand to the UK soon!