Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Facebook Analytics: MAUs and DAUs




With all this hype about the expected continued growth in the social media industry and the dominance of Facebook in this industry, are these growth trends as likely to increase as so many people say or how much of this is just advertising fluff?

If advertising through Facebook is as important as some people claim then how much of my advertising budget should I allocate to Facebook advertising? Or is Facebook just another fad that will pass like MySpace even though it is very different?
   
The answer to the question about Facebook trends is that while the Facebook user base IS growing, most of this expected growth is expected to come from countries such as China, India and Brazil (1). Facebook has even stated that they forecast stagnant to diminishing growth of their user base in the United States, Canada and Europe. From what I have read in Facebook’s last quarterly report on social media market outlook conditions, these changes and trends in social media technology are due to IT improvements. This is because smartphone technology has been getting cheaper and cheaper. All these millions of “would be” social media users in developing markets who historically have never had internet access because they cannot afford to purchase personal computers will begin to have internet access though their smartphones as smartphones are expected to enter these markets. 

So what do these market trends mean to my business and my marketing dollars on Facebook analytics?

This means that most of this hype about the explosive future growth of the Facebook user base is not only going to NOT involve users in the United States or Europe, but it will also NOT even involve the English language. The question then becomes, if this is the case, then do I want to increase my investment in targeting this growing segment of users in these countries and are my products or services relevant to these users?

This can be helpful to keep in perspective before you decide to triple your budget on Facebook advertising based on “dramatic growth” forecasts or purchase more extensive services from any of the companies allowing you to outsource your social media analytic needs.

Facebook social media market analysts have further stated that along with this trend of an increasingly foreign Facebook user base using smartphones as their only method of internet access, advertising revenue will have to be increasingly based on mobile advertising. Traditional PC users are expected to stagnate and decline. Will the same Facebook advertising strategies that were once successful on a PC screen still work on a tiny smartphone?

These changes can dramatically impact the quality and the breadth of data that can come from Facebook targeted advertising. The level of involvement with many websites is very different on a PC from a smartphone. How many people comment on posts from a smartphone? Will the future of Facebook analytics become even more limited by this trend to only measure “likes”?

·       

 

How big is their user base?
How

Facebook uses 2 metrics they call “Monthly Active Users” or “MAUs” (logged in within the last month via any method (computer, tablet, mobile… etc.) and “Daily Active Users” or “DAUs”. Here are some handpicked metrics I pulled from their most recent report filed with the SEC.


Current MAUs by region
Worldwide users 1,007,000,000 –increasing about 52 million per quarter
USA & Canada =189,000,000 –increasing steadily at a rate about 3 million per quarter
Europe =253,000,000 – increasing at about 9 million per quarter
Asia=277,000,000 –increasing at about 20 million per quarter
Rest of the World =288,000,000 –also increasing about 20 million per quarter
            Note that the USA is the slowest MAU growing market for Facebook

Current DAUs by region
Worldwide users 584,000,000 –increasing about 33 million per quarter
USA & Canada =132,000,000 –increasing steadily at a rate about 3 million per quarter
Europe =160,000,000 – increasing at about 7 million per quarter
Asia=141,000,000 –increasing at about 11 million per quarter
Rest of the World =152,000,000 –increasing about 12 million per quarter
            Note again that the USA is the slowest DAU growing market for Facebook

Segmented for Mobile users only
Worldwide users of mobile =604,000,000


Sources:


http://www.facebook.com/business