Twitter is on track to triple its ad revenue this year to $150 million, according to estimates by eMarketer. Still, the fast-growing company has a ways to go before it’s in the big leagues of digital ad sellers.
eMarketer estimates Twitter booked $45 million in ad revenue in 2010, when it first rolled out ad products with Promoted Trends, Sponsored Tweets and Promoted Accounts. This year, eMarketer expects strong growth from the small base to reach $150 million, with all but $11 million coming from the U.S.
That makes Twitter a tiny player in the digital ad world. By comparison Facebook will generate $4 billion in revenue in 2011, according to eMarketer.
In 2012, eMarketer anticipates Twitter will pull in $250 million, although it cautions that’s dependent on Twitter continuing to expand its user base. A Pew Internet and American Life report estimates 8 percent of Americans use Twitter. Twitter says it had 175 million registered users by Nov. 1. It reports adding 370,000 new accounts per day.
A big opportunity Twitter has yet to capitalize on is its popularity outside the U.S. The company says 65 percent of its users are in non-U.S. markets, but eMarketer anticipates international revenue to only account for 7 percent of its sales this year and 10 percent in 2012.