Anyone with kids aged 8-15 will know about Roblox, the platform that allows players to interact with friends in user-created 3-D digital worlds, and how it has become the go-to entertainment and social network choice for this age group. We have been following the progress of Roblox for a couple of years as it has grown the user base (average daily active users of 42.1 million, up 79% year over year Jan-Mar 2021), time spent on site (hours engaged jumped 18% to 3.2 billion) and revenue (adjusted revenue jumped 161% to $652.3 million). After the company's recent IPO, it now has a market value of US$51 billion.
One of the key reasons for the success of Roblox is that it is built as a community first platform, Roblox provides the platform and tools for creators to build their own games and environments, with over one third of revenue from the platform going to creators, much higher than most other social platforms. Prof Galloway provides an interesting perspective on the Roblox Flywheel (at 5 mins).
The social media aspect comes in because users can multi-play with friends and interact in real-time through speech or messaging within games and from different or remote places, while online safety and parental controls have always been a huge part of the success of Roblox as a platform primarily for kids. There are now over 18 million 'experiences' to choose from on the platform with users sampling on average 20 different gaming experiences per month.
Also, the Roblox social-media tentacles spread into mainstream social media such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and predominantly YouTube, with YouTubers such as Ssundee having 17.4 million subscribers on YouTube and regularly getting video views of over 5 million per video playing Roblox games.
Roblox is not only driving revenue from in-game purchases but is also now ramping up brand partnerships. As this article from DigiDay explains "From Nike to Disney, Warner Bros. to Gucci, some of the world’s largest advertisers are already trying to reach Roblox’s audiences, which historically has had a very young demographic though that is changing. "
Roblox, is definitely on the growth path with a new generation of audiences and certainly one platform we are keeping a close eye on their progress.