Starting off: Tomi Ahonen indicates interesting numbers on the Finnish Habbo hotel (teenager) social networking site.
Numbers: “The teenager social networking service has over 90% of its users within the age bracket of 13-18. They have 11.7 million active users any given month. They earned 50 million Euros (74 M USD) last year in revenues and made a profit of 4.8 M Euros. Ebitda profit margin of 9.6%. A profit margin for an online social networking service with no subscription fee and where the majority of the income is NOT advertising."
Wow impressive figures when you take into account that they do not have subscription and major advertising. How do they make their money? They make it the same way that Second Life - by selling virtual stuff. The teenagers can decorate their hotel rooms and characters as they wish with real Euros.
Next up also news from: Tomi Ahonen evaluating / speculating on Blyk.
Blyk is a free mobile service for young people funded by advertising. So does the Blyk concept work otherwise as well? Seems that Tomato Plus out of Croatia is doing the same with a different approach. "Is not limited to the 18-24 age bracket like Blyk, so they also understandably have attracted a wider age range in their users. Similar to Blyk the users agree to receive 6 mobile ads per day and they receive somewhat a smaller set of free traffic, 50 minutes of free calls and 50 free SMS text messages per month. The ads arrive as SMS or MMS messages."
So: 92% of their users are happy. MobHappy says Advertisers get better response rates than Blyk and their range goes up to 75%. (Blyk after 18 months reports 25% average response rates). I will not go into detail. Please visit Tomis blog if you are interested in more speculation. the main idea is that people are happy and willing to receive ads if they also get something out of it i.e. free calls and text.
Lastly: Cnet states that Crystal Wiski, a teen from Antelope in California's Sacramento County, claims to having sent out almost 304,000 SMS text messages in a single month. More precisely, Crystal claims to have sent 303,398 text messages from her iPhone. Previous record-breaking attempt by a pair of Pennsylvania buddies resulted in a whopping $26,000 phone bill. But, that particular record attempt had just 217,000 text messages sent between two people.
Crazy teens :)
That's all for now.