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Flipboard should challenge for real advertising money today.

by Scott Hoffman on May 17, 2011

Flipboard should challenge for real advertising money today. The following is my reasoning.

First a disclaimer: I am huge fan of Flipboard, it was the reason that I bought my iPad, and it remains the most used app on my device. I also tell everyone I see carrying around an iPad to check it out (you can download the iPad app here.)

Flipboard forever alters the way that you receive information, it’s a Reader, It’s Social, It’s a Magazine, It’s Amazing. Period. Don’t take my word for it alone, the app has received great reviews, like this one, and this one…so many in fact that it is hard to list them all…although I used bit.ly bundles to get some of the major reviews here).

There are many more disciples like me in the Flipboard army, about 2 million of us.

In a recent interview with TechCrunch Flipboard’s CEO Mike McCue recently shared that Flipboard, is seeing more than 10 million “flips per day”, up from 3 million two months ago - that is huge growth. A “flip” in the app is like a pageview. The post from TechCrunch suspects that there are currently 2 million people who have downloaded the Flipboard app to their iPads, and about half are active, which would mean that on average each user flips through 10 pages a day. Erick Schonfeld, did some cocktail napkin math and suggested that Flipboard has 1 million readers per day – which is an outstanding usage statistic, some would argue that Flipboard has become an essential information tool for many users. It also also a great achievement for a company that is less than a year old.

Raw Numbers of Flipboard users vs. some news brand names:

To put some perspective on that figure, I compared Flipboard’s usage stats to service to some of the biggest names in brand names in publishing, The Examiner, The TV Guide, The Wall Street Journal (See below).

Flipboard’s 1 million daily users is about 20% the size of the WSJ.com, TV Guide, or the Examiner.

25.6% of iPad owners have installed Flipboard, 12.8% use Flipboard on a daily basis.

There is one more statistic that I would like to point out – 7.8 million people are iPad owners in the US, source WSJ, and FlipBoard’s 2 Million downloads (1 Million Active Users) is 25.6% (or 12.8%) of the total iPad population/universe. Let’s take a look at that same % of universe and compare it once again to USA Today, TV Guide, and The Wall Street Journal reach of the total internet population on a monthly basis, United States only.

I want to advertise to this audience.

As a marketer, Flipboard represents a huge concentration of very attractive users. Just look at iPad users in general. On average iPad owner earn more than 100K annually, they are young, and educated. This will most likely skew into even higher annual income if you did this same survey against Flipboard users.

I want to give them a great interactive advertising experience.

While the form and format of the Flipboard app allows for gorgeous full page renderings of your news and headlines, imagine what a marketer could do with all that space, all that bandwidth, and the bells and whistles. And that is what the marketing community wants – just read this excerpt from a recent post from AdAge Digital around bigger ad units:

In an effort to lure more lucrative brand advertising dollars to the web, the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) anointed six new online ad formats…designed and chosen to play to marketers’ calls for the bigger and more noticeable messages that in many ways is similar to TV advertising.

I had the chance to visit with the team at Flipboard, and spent some time speaking with Gus Gostyla, Business Development for Flipboard. If I were Mike and Gus, and I would go for it!

An aside – Below is a picture with me at the Flipboard HQ with one of my quotes on their wall. As you can see in the picture – I’m happy!

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