If you’re like me, you may have suddenly found yourself on Instagram – this well established advanced social media platform – with the impression that it was only for people to share what food they were eating! I’m joking of course, but seriously, this platform has taken the world by storm with over 1 Billion active monthly users, of which half of them are opening the app daily! This is when I wondered, “Where did Instagram even come from?”.
What is Instagram?
Originally a Social Media Platform designed for users to share photos and videos from their life events with functions for the public or private community to like and comment. Now it is a favorable “tool” used by businesses to connect with their target audiences.
From Burbn to Instagram
Stanford University Graduates, Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger are the two masterminds behind this beautiful app – which was once known as ‘Burbn’. Majority of creations aren’t always an immediate hit with the public, as we understand was the case for Systrom’s protype app, Burbn. With the name being inspired by his love for Kentucky whisky, in early 2010, Systrom built the multi-faceted app for people to check-in their locations, share plans, share photos and earn points for hanging out with friends. It was a great idea, great enough that he managed to grab himself $500,000 in funding from both Baseline Ventures and Andreessen Horowitz – two venture capital investment firms. And so the team building began. Mike Krieger was one of the first to join Kevin Systrom on his journey with Burbn.
With the feedback from users, Systrom and Krieger noted that the app was too complex and ugly. Over the course of 8 weeks they managed to methodically strip the interface to a simplistic version, leaving just photo sharing, commenting, liking and simplistic photo filter functions for a beta app – everyone loved it. With the new simple app, Snstrom decided to change the name to something easy to spell, pronounce and follow the “right here, right now” concept. Instagram is a port-manteau of “instant camera” and “telegram”. In October 2010, Instagram was launched. By December 2010 it had collected over 1 Million users! From here the app soared higher and higher.
Facebook and the $1 Billion deal
It wasn’t long until Instagram’s success caught attention from investors around the globe. The co-founders, Systrom and Krieger were offered multiple offers on multiple occasions to sell their hit app but chose to remain independent. Until the ultimate offer came through from Mark Zuckerburg and his team. It was for a substantial $1 Billion (that’s 9 zeros by the way) in cash and stock with the opportunity to continue independently managing the app.
Instagram for business
With over 1 Billion monthly active users, including only 25 million business profiles (2.5% of total users). If you have a well established business or a start-up, I would highly recommend taking advantage of everything Instagram has to offer. In a new technology age with advancements happening every year, social media should definitely be in your marketing strategy. Platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Snapchat all offer different target audiences – make sure you select the right one. If you need any help with it, we are always happy to offer our services. Check them out here.