How Instagram Got So Big
“Hey Instagram, why is your mouth so big and your design so beautiful?”
– So I can eat my competition faster and faster! Ho Ho Ho!
🙂 Right, I’m mixing my tales but who cares. Here’s what’s going on.
15 million users… yeah, whatever. Point is, they’re doing great and people love to use their app. So…
Why exactly did InstaGram blow up in the first place?
You’d think that the 800 pound gorilla of photo sharing, Flickr (still love ’em to death), would have snagged the self-evident crown of the King of Mobile Photo Sharing long ago?
Instead, a four-person startup (yes, still just four with the 15 million users) overtook and then lapped the Yahoo-owned behemoth, all the while singing neener-neener in their faces.
Or something like that…
Now, if we look at things from the perspective of a marketer slash product designer.. things look a little different:
- Instagram appeals to emotion – quick atmospheric touch-up to your mobile phone photos that tend to not look so professional anyway… makes all the difference. It makes you look good, it makes you feel good, it makes you want to share that feeling you had taking that snap. Folks, emotion sells – and I don’t care what it is you’re selling; personal status, attractiveness to the opposite sex, whatever the reason you share photos in the first place.
- It’s done for you sharing – you get a quick value add that you can share without tweaking and editing and all those things that are possible with more professional software… but you never spend the time figuring it out anyway. People want a service that hands it to them on a silver platter.
- There are no extra steps to take. It’s all very quick and in the moment – so you don’t lose that emotion – just take that snap, maybe apply a filter and a couple of words and buzz… out it goes. You get it now, hence the name. Instant gratification.
- Great name that sticks AND tells you what it does. With a name like instagram, it makes it sound like something you want to at least try once. And once you have, you probably won’t want to use anything else because of the other reasons counted above.
There it is. Go figure.
All based on principles well known by marketers, and mastered by those who actually use them to create and sell product like crazy.
The remaining question is…
Why indeed are marketers so rarely involved in the design of a product, since they know how to sell the final product the best, anyway? Something to think about for the holidays. 🙂