Perhaps it was only a matter of time.
Today, Facebook announced it will purchase the incredibly popular (and frequently heralded by yours truly) photo sharing application Instagram for about $1 billion in cash and stock options. Clearly the app’s ever-increasing popularity (more than 30 million users gained in less than two years) was a threat to Facebook’s role as the leader in online photo sharing, a trend the company initiated nearly 10 years ago.
What might this purchase mean for marketers using Instagram and other photo-sharing sites?
Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg says nothing, yet. “…we’re committed to building and growing Instagram independently. Millions of people around the world love the Instagram app and the brand associated with it, and our goal is to help spread this app and brand to even more people.”
So, Facebook does not plan to roll Instagram into its own platform and hinder its transactions with competing sites like Twitter.
This is good news for marketers, who can continue to take advantage of the niche market Instagram caters to, including creative types such as musicians, artists and photographers, not to mention 30-something hipsters (though they would never admit liking a site that the general public is invited to use).
What do you think? Will Facebook’s ownership change Instagram for the better?