There’s been lots of online chatter about the expected announcement today of Facebook email — and how it might kill Gmail. It won’t. There are a lots of Gmail fanboys. It will, however, hurt new accounts and current usage among Millennials, teens, and tweens. But the really big news is that Facebook email will be a crazy money maker.
It is reported that 1 in 4 ads displayed on the web are Facebook ads — with 1.28 trillion banners ads viewed in the 3rd quarter of 2010 alone. Dude! That more than TV, radio, and OOH combined (please don’t fact check, I just made that up). That is a lot of impressions. If Facebook’s email — through which users will have personal email accounts (firstname.lastname@example.org) — takes off, I smell another trillion…give or take. That’s some cheddar.
Debate all you will about the integration of web applications into the Facebook email product (Microsoft, Google Docs, Mobile, Enterprise, etc.) and its revenue implications, this puppy is going to be an advertising breakthrough. Privacy will be a major issue of course. Think about it, if I send an email to a friend about a camping trip (That camping trip joke never dies, thanks Jed) and the recipient gets an REI ad, it’s going to be an issue. But that’s a story for next month. There will be lots of chatter and lots of cheddar coming off of this announcement. Whoo. Peace!