RBC launches 3 new social networks

    I did not see this note in the tape, so I will allow myself to quote the Kommersant spot.

    RBC got into social networks
    // The holding will spend $ 5 million to launch three projects

    The market for social Internet networks has attracted the attention of large media holdings. Mediamir, the managing company for the entertainment sites of RBC Holding, is launching three social Internet projects, including the autopager.ru portal for motorists. With their help, the company wants to increase the audience of its portals from 2 million to 15 million users per month in a year. Experts call these plans unrealistic: the audience of all Runet in 2007 will be about 30 million people.

    The social network autopager.ru is designed for car owners. It will allow its users to write reviews about specific drivers and exchange messages, including via SMS. With the help of the second new Mediamir resource, otsledi.com, it will be possible to find new friends of interest. The third project, blogi.ru, is a blog hosting service, an analogue of livejournal.com. “Blogs are still in the testing phase, we will launch them in early January,” said General Director of Mediamira Mikhail Gurevich. With the help of new projects, Mediamir expects to bring the total monthly audience of its portals to 15 million users during the year. “Now the competition in the segment of social networks is high, the minimum amount for the promotion of new resources will be $ 5 million, which will be spent on advertising,” says Mr. Gurevich.

    Social networks, which began to actively develop in Runet this year, until almost bring their owners advertising revenue. Mr. Gurevich claims that Mediamir is working on monetizing the audience of its resources: “So, on autopager.ru there is a service for sending a paid SMS message, the text of which will be instantly published on the site: the user can complain or praise a particular driver during the trip, indicating the car number in SMS ”.

    Mediamir Company is a subsidiary of RBC Information Systems OJSC, established earlier this year. He owns the loveplanet.ru dating site, photofile.ru photo hosting, anekdot.ru humor site, pochta.ru email service, memori.ru social bookmarking service, etc. According to its own data, the daily audience of sites managed by Mediamir exceeds 2 million people.

    The stated advertising budget is enough to promote new portals. "$ 5 million a year is enough to promote and bring sites to a level of recognition similar to the loveplanet.ru portal," said Igor Ashmanov, CEO of Ashmanov and Partners. Investment Director of ABRT Venture Fund Nikolay Mityushin, however, doubts that by the end of 2008, Mediamir’s websites are unlikely to reach a monthly reach of 15 million users: “This is 50% of the RuNet audience for six months of this year. According to the results of October, the untwisted odnoklassniki.ru resource had about 1 million Moscow users. ”

    The bet on specialized social networks, however, is quite justified, notes Mr. Mityushin. “People have already played enough at odnoklassniki.ru, there is a need to communicate according to interests: thematic social networks are becoming popular in the West,” he explained. Among the thematic Western social networks, mychurch.com (85 thousand users) can be distinguished, which allows you to create your own church. The geni.com network unites relatives, mommybuzz.com - young mothers. According to Mr. Mityushin, now 30-40% of active Internet users in Russia are registered in a social network, and, for example, in the USA this figure reaches 80%.

    The newspaper Kommersant No. 237 (3813) dated 12/22/2007

    It seems to me that you do not need to be seven spans in your forehead in order to understand where RBC should strive.

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