Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Watch Bebo watch Bebo

Heather Hopkins alerts us to Bebo which is catching up to eBay as the most searched for brand in the UK.

Since May, the term "bebo" has ranked #2 in the share of UK internet searches after "ebay", and Bebo's rapid rise is narrowing the gap. The market share of UK internet searches for "bebo" has increased more than three fold in the past six months and 17.6% in the past three months.

So everyone must head over there to see why this is such an interesting communication channel and Social Network.

An interview in the Sunday Times last Sunday said that Bebo head Michael Birch seemed prepared to wait before earning much money from the service:

Birch, 36, is almost dismissive of the need for Bebo to generate revenues at this stage. For the next two or three years, his priority is to establish the firm as one of the global leaders in social networking. The big challenge is in America, where Bebo is currently a distant third behind MySpace and Facebook, a college-based site.

“At the moment there’s a race for traffic,” says Birch. “Implementing a successful business model does not necessarily help in that goal. There are so many avenues that social networking can go down.”

So Friday’s revelation that Bebo is planning a mobile service isn’t about revenue? Pete Cashmore notes:

…it seems that Bebo Mobile is a step closer - mobile phone group O2 is in talks with the company, although discussions are still at the early stages. There were rumors earlier this week that Bebo plans to extend the site via SMS, rather than the WAP-based services that other social networks are pursuing.