Yesterday the founder of VKontakte (the most popular Russian social media) Pavel Durov has published the statistics of the four most popular social networks in Russia usage. The diagram shows the number of users every month since October 2012.
Facebook is still loosing users there while VKontakte keeps growing. Pavel noticed that Facebook has just blocked the tool that used to synchronize the VK and Fb accounts and export VK posts to the Facebook. But as he mentioned, the dynamic shows that this integration will not be needed anymore soon.
The data was prepared by the ComScore, in October 2013 VKontakte had 51,6 million users in Russia while Facebook had only 8,6 million. And even Mark's visit to Russia with a huge media coverage didn’t help.
In Octiber 2012 Mark Zuckerberg visited Moscow and said that he had no doubts that one day Facebook would displace VKontakte in the former Soviet Union countries. But in December 2013 Julien Codorniou (Director Platform Partnerships Facebook EMEA) also came to Moscow and declared the opposite: “From the platform perspective [driving market share in Russia away from VKontakte to Facebook] is not a priority for us. … We’re not competing with VKontakte outside of Russia,” Mr. Codorniou said. “On the platform side [of Facebook] no [there’s no desire to compete with VKontakte] in Russia,” he added.
2 months ago during the Global Mobile Internet Conference in Silicon Valley, Pavel Durov said that said Mark Zuckerberg underestimates VKontakte: “It is faster, easier and more functional than Facebook, Mark hasn’t used it enough”. Also VK created some tools that were somehow implemented in Facebook later (ex. switching the news types).
So what do we have now – VKontakte is obviously winning in the former Soviet Union countries (that are huge enough to make a difference). Lets see what happens next, social medias need to grow and develop every moment, otherwise they loose. Anyway this may be a good reason to take a better look at VKontakte and make your own conclusions.