In a recent Mashable article, Ben Parr writes about the staggering growth of Facebook. It makes you wonder about the future of the web as we know it — will people stop building websites and focus on building facebook pages? What does this mean for the future of the web and the way that brands interact and think about their communication strategies? The numbers are staggering — and very real. The reality that brands are faced with is a dramatic change in control — from a one way “broadcasting” strategy that they used to own, to a “listening” and “engagement” strategy that requires them to provide relevant and meaningful content in order to get consumers interested in what they have to say. Without this shift in strategy they will be left without visibility and without meaning in a socially dominated world that has turned the value chain on its head.
It’s no secret that Facebook is humongous: 300 million users humongous. Yet it still shocks us that it keeps on finding new users to fuel its ascent into the social media stratosphere.
A little over a year ago (August 2008), Facebook (Facebook) reached 100 million users. And now according to AllFacebook, that number is now a staggering 325+ million users.
So just how fast is Facebook’s userbase growing? We sat down and did the math. First, here are Facebook’s major growth milestones, starting from when it reached 100 million users:
– August 26th, 2008: 100 million users
– January 7th, 2009: 150 million users
– April 8th, 2009: 200 million users
– July 15th, 2009: 250 million users
– September 15th, 2009: 300 million users
– Friday, November 6th, 2009: 325 million users
Half a Million New Users. Every Single Day.
So let’s do the math. From September 15th to November 6th, Facebook grew by 25 million users. That’s 53 days, if we include the start and end days. Divide that by 25 million and you get a daily growth rate of 471,698 users per day for Facebook. That’s a small city joining Facebook every single day.
Even more shocking is that the number used to be higher. Between July 15th and September 15th, 63 days, Facebook grew by 50 million users. If we do the math, Facebook was growing at a clip of 793,650 users per day. We’re barely able to come up with the words to describe this type of growth.
The Facebook train has to eventually slow down; there are only so many people on planet Earth with an Internet connection (yes, that’s how big their potential audience is), and it seems to be already slowing. However, if you consider half a million users per day “slowing,” then you know you’ve done something right.
This train’s going towards the sky for a good, long time.