Monetising the Mobile Internet – a summary

June 9, 2009

The MDA kindly organised a gathering at the Royal Statistical Society yesterday to discuss how the mobile internet can make money.

In keeping with the venue, here are a few stats – I’ll leave the comment for a later date:

  • Vodafone’s worldwide data revenue is up 43%  year on year, and is at the same level as SMS was in 2003 (Terence Eden, Vodafone)
  • 20% of UK mobile users are mobile internet users (Royal Statitics Socety)
  • Vodafone India acquire 1.6M customers per month (Terence Eden)
  • 50% of UK 9 year olds have a mobile (Alex Meisl, Sponge)
  • Autotrader’s mobile site for 6M impressions in March ’09 (Alex Meisl, Sponge)
  • Green Thing’s campaign on Blyk went from 5% WAP clickthrough to 11%-22% (Richard Warren, FirstPartner)
  • Mobile advertising spend in Europe is expected to grow to €950M by 2012 (Richard Warren, FirstPartner)
  • UK mobile advertising should go from €50M to €220M in 2013 (Richard Warren, FirstPartner)
  • A few iteresting figures from the delightful Mark Curtis from Flirtomatic:
    • Flirtomatic are now over 1.3M UK users
    • Revenues is over $10 per month per spending customer ($1.50 ARPU overall)
    • They achieve 160M pages per month on mobile (a lot more than Autotrader)
    • Users exchange 30M messages per month
    • In 2008 they earnt $2.6M from premium services
    • The Strongbow campaign on Flirtomatic, allowing users to send pints to each other for free, achieved a 10% clickthrough rate
    • On May 1st, when Vodafone allowed free data to pre-pay customers, Flirtomatc’s acquisitions went up x13
    • 2 years ago, Flirto got 3500 new users by advertising on the 3 portal for 3 hours (mirrored by similar experiences we had at Future Platforms)
  • 3 UK customers used 34M Skype minutes in Jan ’09 (Rory Maguire, 3)
  • 18% of Facebook’s mobile users are on Three (Rory Maguire, 3)
  • 21,557 Bebo mobile users are on 3 (Rory Maguire, 3)
  • 27% of 3 customers download content, 45% have used MMS (Rory Maguire, 3)

And here are a few interesting quotes:

 “As mobile internet grows, it will move off portal” – Richard Warren, FirstPartner [but will it just move to other portals like iTunes, Ovi, Google?]

 “mobile advertising takes you to a mobile site at best, it really needs transactions integrated at the end” – Richard Warren, FirstPartner [while we wait for mCommerce, mobile apps may be good candidates as mechanics for retaining a consumer’s attention]

“There is more VALUE in meeting new people then reconnecting with people you already know” – Mark Curtis, Flirtomatic [i.e. people are more likely to pay for Flirtomatic or LinkedIn than for Facebook or Bebo]

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