A picture speaks a thousand words, so it’s no surprise that Instagram came in through the back door into people’s everyday lives and took off like a rocket. When an app becomes a verb you know it’s going viral and it’s here to stay. So facebook didn’t like anyone selling juicier hot dogs on their corner, they were watching instagram take off. Journalists were whingeing, camera-obsessed photographers were complaining that instagram with its two-second filters and frames that the world could now send from their phones, was destroying photography. Yeah well, time marches on. People have a mini-computer in their pocket wherever they go now. So taking a photo and putting a caption on it takes a second, then you can intensify the colour and feel in another milli-second and then send it out on facebook, twitter, tumblr, and foresquare in another second. If you were old school you could email it too. Badda bing bada boom.
It’s so cool, the attention-seekers among us didn’t have to find the words, they instagramed their breakfast, the cat, the sunrise, the new apple mac, the newsports car, their muscles in the gym. Instant gratification.
Pictures are the future, Twitter played second fiddle too, instead of loading pictures directly up to twitter, it’s all on instagram now and tweeted out from there.
Now, you say, “Theoretically facebook still gets the picture sent onto it so why should it be getting snarky?”
Well, facebook had a photo app of its own, an i OS Facebook camera app, that Instagram upstaged like a bridesmaid in a see-through white lace dress at a wedding.
Facebook wanted their name to be that verb. Not instagram. So in a move as old as the pharma business they bought out Instagram.
Yes and paid a hefty slice for it. A reported 1 billion. The details emerged, 300 million, plus 23 million worth of facebook shares and a break-up fee of 200 million if the deal didn’t get past regulators. I would like to have been a fly on the wall at Instagram, who could have imagined this stratospheric rise, phew! So why did facebook have to buy out Instagram if it had its own photo app? Very simple, it didn’t want to be upstaged and to have to compete.
The old mergers and aquisitions of the eighties and nineties, M&A, is fast becoming just A. Acquire. BUY BUY BUY.
How did instagram manage to build such value in less than two years and hit 50 million downloads of the app? Simple, they were smart at branding and they developed with the users, made it easy, fast and, oh so addictive. You could be uploading pics on the run from your phone, while collecting followers and be sending out your own channel while connected to all your social accounts. Brilliant. It was better than Facebook posting and quicker. Facebook didn’t like that one bit.
So they bought it and continued on with their own photo app too. So now if you want to post a photo it’s all in-house. People who may not like Facebook that much anymore may think they have moved away from facebook to Instagram, (as so many did to Google plus, where things are getting off to a slow start as is always the case with anything the Googlites touch), but it’s all in the Facebook family now, Instagram or not.
Instagram showed them all that you could take a simple app and become indispensable to people in mere months. Tech pundits were once again gob-smacked as to the amount Facebook paid for Instagram. I wasn’t, they had the leverage and the people, and facebook’s camera app doesn’t compare on usuability as far as I’m concerned. I think they know it.
I still use Instagram and Pinterest and Bazaart every day, because I believe a picture speaks a thousand words, and in our time-starved world, time is money, we are visual creatures and the critics are eating humble pie.
Pinterest was for bored housewives. Yeah, right. The fashion, design, event and architectural industries have been revolutionized by it and these are not small industries, those are just a few. 32% of consumers that were surveyed said social-media sites like this led them to buy products and services.
These are exciting times. Who said the Tech bubble has burst? There’s a new bright star born every month.
Do you think we are changing the way we communicate and connect in business? Leave us a comment below, or tweet me at @wisequeen