Facebook, Instagram & Pinterest - Oh my!
Posted: April 13, 2012 | 9:34 ET by Tessa Wegert
We've witnessed some bold online media acquisitions, and Facebook's recent purchase of Instagram for $1 billion USD is no exception. At first blush it seems like a lot of money to pay for a photo-sharing app used primarily to give their mobile images a vintage look. But there's more to the deal than meets the eye. Some are speculating that Facebook was attracted to the service because of its potential to compete with another social site, Pinterest (for an overview of the site and ideas on how to use it for online promotion, click here.)
Given that Pinterest is now the third most popular online social network behind Facebook and Twitter, you can understand Facebook's motivation. The Web-based behemoth sees in Pinterest a viable rival and is fighting back.
That Facebook now has its own superior mobile image app could prove to be a good thing for digital marketing. Instagram boasts over 30 million users and is currently the most popular social network for mobile applications after Facebook and Twitter. Now that it's under the Facebook umbrella, marketers can expect to see new advertising opportunities surrounding mobile images and photo sharing.
Facebook's tried-and-true approach of enlisting its users to incite interest in advertiser products among their peers meshes well with consumer behaviour as it relates to Instagram. Donít be surprised if you start to see the network's trademark sponsored filters applied to this service as well. As with Facebook and Pinterest, Instagram users can subscribe to view and receive content from consumer brands. The opportunity to engage with brands already exists, and Facebook's social media marketing expertise will only take it further.
It isn't easy keeping up with every social network and mobile app to land on your desk, but Instagram is one worth watching. For the moment, at least, everything Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg touches is still apt to turn to gold.
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Tessa Wegert is a veteran media strategist with a background in media planning and buying, content development, ad copywriting, and campaign management. As a prominent industry writer she has been covering digital marketing and technology for leading newspapers and trade publications for over a decade. Connect with her on Twitter (@tessawegert) and LinkedIn.