An image-based social network is the hottest news these days! Instagram, an image-based website who were into providing online photo sharing facilities to its users has now been acquired by Facebook to integrate its photo sharing services for millions of Facebook users scattered around the globe.
Facebook spent a jaw dropping 1 billion USD in acquiring Instagram!
Two things before we move on:
1. Instagram was just a 17-month old app at the time of acquisition.
2. Founders of Instagram never earned even one penny through this app. It was available as a free download.
Without any revenue model and as a relatively new business, Instagram has struck gold. Won’t you say so? This goes to show online business is still a lucrative deal!
Let’s move on. Let’s see how this acquisition will help those online marketers who spend much of their time in promoting businesses on the social networking site.
Advantages Of The Instagram Acquisition
With this acquisition, Instagram will provide massive designs, engineering resources and advanced photo sharing facility to Facebook. Following are the expected outputs of this tie up:
1. Facebook Enables Photo Filtration:
Last year, Facebook was planning to launch a standard application supporting photo filter, photo browsing and photo posting facilities. Instagram will now work for the same with the Facebook team. This will initialize all the above suggested features in Facebook photos.
Facebook users will soon have access to Instagram photo filter facility on their wall and the facility will be available for Smart phones users as well.
2. Add-Ons To Facebook Photo Import Feature:
Earlier, Facebook followed standard photo import features for its users where they could import their choice of photo and create their own photo album. Facebook-Instagram combined platform will enable users to import Instagram Photos in the Facebook album. Also, users will be able to filter, publish and edit Facebook photos in a more customized format. Here is an example:
3. Integrated Log-in Facility:
Facebook and Instagram users will now access the same log-in for both platforms. Facebook-Instagram is enabling a combined log-in script which will enhance the on-boarding process to new users from now. Also, the present Instagram users can connect to their Facebook profile seamlessly after the acquisition.
4. Advance Geo-Tagged Feature:
Currently, Instagram is accessing the location database of Foursquare.com. Soon it will enable Geo-tagged facility for its users with the help of a location database managed by Facebook. Location database of social media sites helps in browsing nearby landmark and business points.
Instagram users will be able to tag their photo’s location with the help of the integrated Geo-tagging feature of Facebook. On the other hand, Facebook will notify friends for nearby meet up with their photos on Instagram. From the business point of view, the tie up will conclude into new marketing prospects for business brand managers.
5. Enabling Tagging Facility To Instagram users:
Presently, there is no provision to tag people on Instagram photos. One can easily estimate that the Facebook photo tagging feature will be soon installed on the Instagram platform. It might also be possible that Facebook will allow the mobile photo tagging feature for Instagram users as well.
Disadvantages Of The Instagram Acquisition
Some industry experts do not see this acquisition favorably. The common consensus is that Facebook bough Instagram just to increase their IPO value, likely to be released in June 2012. Some disadvantageous outcomes could be:
- Existing Instagram users will delete their accounts to escape allowing Facebook from accessing and recording their data and using it for Facebook advertisements.
- Instagram users will lose their photos if they delete the combined Facebook-Instagram profile. This can be too dangerous for corporate people who have uploaded their business photos on Instagram.
- After combined log-in facility, once the user deletes the account, the user cannot re-register with the same user name in the future.
Only time will tell the outcome from the acquisition.
Mark Zuckerberg believes that both platforms give different experiences to the user and the acquisition will bring both the platforms together and give unimaginable resources to users. At the same time, Facebook will try not to lose the purpose with which Instagram was originally created. Zuckerberg says in his statement;
“We believe these are different experiences that complement each other. But in order to do this well, we need to be mindful about keeping and building on Instagram’s strengths and features rather than just trying to integrate everything into Facebook.”
It is vital to note that Instagram will wilt away after this acquisition, which many industry experts think to be very likely. As general users and online marketers, we can only expect to get new features to enhance our mobile photo experiences. It is highly probable that Facebook – Instagram will change the way of photo sharing.