It was bound to happen, and by reaching one out of every seven people throughout the world, Facebook has finally hit and exceeded its mark of one billion users. By helping a billion people connect, CEO Mark Zuckerberg is both proud although humbled. But he isn't ready to stop there. He will continue to grow with additional monetization avenues as well as new markets.
Looking to the Future.
Although the number of Facebook users in the US and Canada account for less than 20%, they add up to some 48% of advertising revenue. As the company's stocks have taken a beating lately, it looks to increased advertising opportunities to pull the prices back up. By monitoring the real world effects of using Facebook as a credible advertising platform, they hope to use the vast amounts of data they have collected to attract advertising dollars. With recent predictions that there will be more mobile devices than people by the end of 2012, social networking services are in a race to grab users. As it stands now, 102 million users access Facebook only through the use of a mobile site. If predictions hold true, the annual ad revenue from Facebook's mobile service will reach $629 million in just two years, only one step behind Google. Plans are underway at Facebook to build a better mobile experience to ensure its place in the market.
Expansion to Emerging Markets
China and Russia are both key markets where Facebook takes a backseat to their regional competitors. By learning from Google's mistakes in China, Zuckerberg hopes to capitalize and gain entry into that market. Following its "Facebook for Every Phone" project in Africa, that market is doing very well with the creation of a special version of Facebook for "feature phones." The phones cannot display the full-featured site, but for now Africans are content with a phone that is Facebook enabled.