Facebook Buys Instagram – Should Your Brand Get On Board?

April 13, 2012


Image courtesy of cbsnews.com

Earlier this week, Facebook announced its groundbreaking purchase of the popular photo-sharing app, Instagram, for $1 billion. Our Fleishman-Hillard Canada colleagues wrote a great post about the announcement as well as a recap of how some brands are successfully using Pinterest.

The acquisition by Facebook serves as yet another proof point of the importance of visual storytelling in social media. And while social media pundits were quick to give their predictions about the future of Instagram, in reality it's far too early to tell how the Facebook acquisition will impact the platform or its base of 30 million plus users.

With all of the attention on Instagram right now, brands and marketers are scurrying to jump on the bandwagon of the newest social media darling. Before you drop everything to set up your presence on Instagram, ask yourself these three basic questions:

  1.  How can Instagram help you accomplish your business and/or communications goals? Far too often, marketers succumb to “BSOS” (bright shiny object syndrome), pouring all of their attention onto the latest trend, and in some cases losing site of their core strategy. If there's no strategy at the foundation, it all ladders up to nothing.
  2. Do you have the right resources in place? Whether you're a Fortune 100 business or a dotcom startup, no company has completely unlimited resources at their disposal. Make sure you aren't sacrificing your commitment to your existing communities and channels in order to explore new ones.
  3. How will you measure success? Keep in mind that Instagram is a mobile platform, and it currently doesn't have the detailed analytics like web-based social networks (although that's almost sure to change, thanks to Facebook). Be sure to set clearly defined and measurable goals so you can report results back to senior management.

Once you've decided that Instagram is a good fit for your brand strategy, check out the tips from FH's Lisa Weser on how to activate your brand on Instagram. Snap to it!