Whenever I discuss virtual goods and the Facebook revenue model with people outside the industry, the first thing they ask me is: do people actually care for virtual goods? My answer is always the same: while the goods have no actual physical presence, their context on a social network means their value is social and emotional. And if that doesn’t sell the point, I just point to Zynga. Well, chock up another data node for my point of view: FarmVille players have already sent more valentines in 18 hours than all the 152 million Valentines Day cards exchanged all year according to Hallmark.
Valentine’s day is still a few days away, and Zynga and the rest of the Social Games developers will surely be announcing the massive exchange of virtual goods after it has passed. In the meantime, we have a few numbers and descriptions of the available products from Zynga. First of all, Cafe World has ha 100 Million gifts exchanged so far, with 7.5M unique users have exchanged gifts. Farmville, Zynga’s biggest game at nearly 80 million Monthly Active Users, had 220 million Valentine’s Day gifts exchanged in the first 18 hours since their release. No word on the monetization of these goods, yet. We’ll update here as more information is released in the days leading up to Valentine’s Day.
A list of the available Valentine’s Day gifts from Zynga is shown below:
· Diamond’s are a girl’s best friend: Never-wither diamond ring gift for your loved one
· Love themed, limited edition loot: Love Ewe – a pink sheep, Peking Ducks – two ducks kissing on a bench and Eiffel Tower
· Decorate your café to cater to love birds: Over 30 premium and non-premium Valentine themed assets that players can use to decorate their Café
· Valentine themed mystery gifts that can be opened starting February 9th
· A heart shaped chocolate box that fills up with gifted chocolates: releases Chocolate Surgeon fish when all the chocolate spaces are filled
· Valentine mystery crates that pay out limited edition V-day items: Kissing Fish Figurine and Kissing Fish
· Love-o-meter: Send and receive Valentine gifts – the more Valentines you receive, the higher your love-o-meter score rises
· Valentine’s Day Grand Prize: PetVille grand prize to be awards on Valentine’s day – a deluxe prize that gets awarded to anyone who reaches a certain level of gifts
· Valentine’s Day Massacre Featured Job – choose from 3 different jobs with different payouts to get to 100% mastery
· Special Valentine’s Day Collection – complete the collection by getting item drops on jobs, fights and the featured job. Drops happen only until February 15.