U.S. Social Gamers to Reach 68.7 Million in 2012

‘Social gaming exploded in 2010’, according to a report by eMarketer.  53 million US internet users, or 24% of the online audience, played social games such as Zynga’s FarmVille and CityVille at least once a month in 2010.

The social gaming audience will continue to grow over the next two years, reaching an expected 68.7 million social gamers in the US in 2012, representing 29% of US internet users.

Revenues from social gaming will also follow a healthy growth track.  The Los Angeles Times reports that the social gaming market will hit $1 billion this year, a 28% increase from last year, when the social gaming market totaled $856 million.  US revenues are expected to rise to $1.32 billion in 2012.

Another eMarketer report indicates this growth will be largely driven by brand advertising, with ad spending on social games projected to reach $271 million, more than doubling the $120 million spent in 2010.