Reports Media & Marketing

Facebook’s Instagram Problem Building Media Strategy In A Fragmented Audience World

Report by Mark Mulligan
Cover image for Facebook’s Instagram Problem
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The 20,000 Foot View: In December 2016 Mark Zuckerberg announced that Facebook was embarking on a path to become a media company, but a media company unlike any other. More than one year on, Facebook’s metrics are revealing just how important this strategy is going to be for the company’s outlook. In        2017 Facebook reported a slight drop in daily active users (DAUs) in the US and Canada. Although Facebook constructed a compelling narrative for how this was a byproduct of it cleaning up the user experience, the underlying factor is more profound: Facebook’s messaging apps are stealing Facebook’s core audience.

Key Findings

  • In        2017 Facebook’s daily active users (DAUs) fell in some key markets, with a DAU decline of        compared to        in the US and Canada
  • There were        billion monthly active users (MAUs) of messaging apps globally at the end of 2017, up from        billion in 2016 and        billion in 2015
  • Facebook has a        market share in the global mobile messaging app space
  •        of Facebook’s user base is using at least one Facebook messaging app
  • Facebook DAUs as a percentage of MAUs fell quarterly from        2017 to       
  •        of Facebook’s user base in these markets is aged        and older, while just        are aged under               of Messenger users are aged        while just        are under 
  • Facebook’s policy of increasing content relevance will drive advertiser value, while messaging app features will double down on personal connections
  • Facebook’s video strategy will likely include schedules and programming guides with messaging apps used as audience acquisition funnels
  • Games video aimed at super-mainstream gamers and music video and could be a product bridge to a full premium video offering
  • Nearer term, music will be used to add personal expression to messaging content and communication

Companies and brands mentioned in this report: Facebook, Facebook Messenger, Instagram, Snapchat, Twitch, WhatsApp, YouTube

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