Facebook to pass MySpace in ad spending in 2010

Marketers will spend $1.2 billion in paid advertising on social networks in the U.S. in 2010 — a 3.9% increase driven mainly by Facebook’s rapid growth, according to a new eMarketer forecast. Worldwide, paid social network advertising is expected to increase 12% to $2.2 billion this year, and to $2.5 billion in 2010. Facebook’s U.S. ad revenue is projected to increase from $335 million in 2009 to $450 next year, while MySpace will contract from $465 million to $360 million. That translates into a 34.7% share of spending for Facebook, compared to 28.7% for MySpace. The shift is based in large part from the site’s surging audience growth. Facebook boasts 350 million users worldwide, and in November cracked 100 million monthly U.S. visitors for the first time to become the fourth-largest Web property overall, according to comScore. MySpace’s U.S. audience, by contrast, had fallen to 64 million as of October 2009. More details in MediaPost; full (premium) eMarketer report here.