Social Network Ad Revenues Accelerate Worldwide - eMarketer

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Social Network Ad Revenues Accelerate Worldwide

Facebook will drive growth and capture nearly 65% of social network ad revenues in 2015

September 23, 2015

Worldwide social network ad spending is accelerating even faster than expected, according to a new forecast from eMarketer. Global social network ad spending will reach $25.14 billion in 2015, higher than the $23.68 forecast in April. However, the pace at which the major players are growing differs greatly.

Social Network Ad Revenues Worldwide, by Company, 2014-2017

The growth in social network ad spending can largely be attributed to a rapid increase in Facebook's ad revenue. eMarketer expects Facebook to capture $16.29 billion in ad revenues worldwide, a jump of 41.8% over 2014. This year, Facebook will take 64.8% of total social network ad spending worldwide.

A portion of Facebook's explosive growth will continue to be driven by Instagram. The mobile picture-sharing app will take in $600 million worldwide this year, accounting for 5% of Facebook's worldwide mobile ad revenue this year. In 2016, eMarketer expects Instagram to make $1.48 billion in worldwide ad revenues, growing 149% over 2015.

With this forecast, eMarketer has adjusted Twitter's worldwide growth rate down since April. Twitter is now expected to grow ad revenues 61.8% this year, taking in $2.03 billion, or 8.1% of total social network ad spending worldwide. In April, eMarketer predicted Twitter's growth would reach 66.9% this year.

“Twitter's slowing user growth is impacting its ad business,” said eMarketer principal analyst Debra Aho Williamson. “Twitter has improved its ad targeting capabilities, and it still has a lock on real-time conversation. However, advertisers want to reach a mass audience and that's harder to do on Twitter than on Facebook.”

Facebook and Twitter Ad Revenues per User Worldwide, US vs. Non-US, 2014-2017

As Facebook continues to grow its user base and capture more revenue, eMarketer has adjusted its ad revenue per user forecast upward. Facebook's ad revenue per user will reach $48.76 this year in the US, higher than the $43.43 forecast in April. Worldwide, Facebook will capture $12.76 per user this year. By 2016, eMarketer expects Facebook to take in $15.18 per user worldwide, and $61.06 per user in the US.

Meanwhile, Twitter will capture $24.48 per US user in 2015, adjusted downward from April estimates. Worldwide, Twitter will capture $7.75 per user in 2015. By 2016, eMarketer forecasts Twitter to capture $10.12 per user worldwide and $32.22 per user in the US.

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