A study by eMarketer predicts that Twitter will triple its advertising revenue to $150m in 2011, with the outside possibility it might even reach $250m.
Brands already using Twitter include the likes of American Express, Nissan and Starbucks.
eMarketer analyst Debra Aho Williamson said: “If Twitter can grow its user base and convince marketers of its value as a go-to secondary player to Facebook, it will succeed in gaining revenue. In 2011 it must work overtime to give its early advertisers a positive experience.”
eMarketer based its $150m assessment on a study that compared Twitter with Facebook. The elder social networking site had sales of around $150m in 2007 when it started to focus on selling ads. Many believe that despite the current difference in scale between the two networks – Facebook nows has ad revenue of around $1.86b – it is possible that Twitter may now gave it a run for its money.
Other eMarketer conclusions include:
The majority of Twitter's ad revenue in 2011 will come from the US, but from next year around 10% will come from international brands.
Facebook's revenue will soar to around $5.7b in 2012
MySpace revenue will drop from its current level of $288m to $156m over the period, meaning Twitter will outstrip it in both ad revenue and site traffic