Thursday, April 12, 2012

Instagram and Facebook

This is a beautiful and brilliant fit for Facebook. One of Facebook’s most original insights was the ability to “tag” people in photos. In large part, Facebook grew on the strength of its photo repository—even early on, it boasted more pics than Flickr, which made users intensely loyal. So it’s only natural that Facebook’s first major acquisition is of a photo company whose users are equally passionate.

Another reason this acquisition makes sense is that Instagram dominates a space where Facebook lags behind: mobile. Indeed, in its filing with the SEC, Facebook admitted that it hasn’t figured out mobile. By contrast, Instagram was built on the back of smartphones, namely, the iPhone.

As for clients, we’re increasingly advising both current clients and prospective ones to approach mobile at the outset of their planning, rather than during a campaign when the boss asks, “Why aren’t we doing anything for my daughter’s iPad?” Whether it’s a full-blown app or a simple icon, or something in-between, like a mobile-friendly skin, we believe that a mobile strategy is critical to staying ahead of the curve. Just yesterday, we were brainstorming about a potential partnership with Foursquare for one client, and a geotargeted contest or coupon for another.

Finally, one of the best ways we come up with ideas is through our own experiences. So for the iPhone and, now, Android users among us, the more we use Instagram in our personal lives, the more we’ll think of the site in our professional lives.

Addendum (4/16/2012): Success!

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