Category Archives: InstaInfo
So what lies ahead for the future of one of the hottest apps on the planet. Well before we look into where the app is heading, we need to look at part of what makes it so hot right now. And to find that out, look no further than Hotstagram. Well at least if your looking for hot people, you won’t find anything about cars, food, or electronics, but yes, plenty of attractive faces. They have a page for girls and a page for guys. You get to vote for your favorite and check up on the leaderboard to see who has the most votes, and it looks like it updates pretty frequently, about every 2 minutes or so. It automatically defaulted to voting for the girls for my computer, but upon checking out the voting stats the females have about 8 times as many votes as the
guys. Pretty exciting, especially if someone you know is up there, but I’m pretty sure most are professional models, at least the top ranked ones. You can see that the photos that are appearing are those that are tagged with examples of the following: #hotstagram #sexy #girl #girls #shoutouts #instamood #instahub #instago #instagramers #instagramhotgirls #pretty #hot.
So if that is what is hot currently, what is hot for the future. Well, what if people start to get tired of the retro looking photo filters. What if people want something brighter, sharper, or even want to create their own filters. An author for the Atlantic blogged about a photo that uses every Instagram filter. Check it out through this link. Is this part of what we will look for in the future. Is there a great market potential to be combining previous filters, or like we said before, really customizing the filter so that it fits your exact needs. I wouldn’t doubt it, and if it is not Instagram to move first on the app front, it would be expected to see apps moving in this direction as this type of move would really energize users.
What do you think the future of Instagram will be? What do you think the future of photo sharing applications are? How will you be involved?
Just found another new business opportunity that has been fulfilled! Actually learned about this through one of my Instagrammers who posted a picture about the new site Casetagram. Decided to check it out and I cannot wait to get my order in! Basically what Casetagram does it allow you to customize an iPhone (sorry Androiders) case made entirely from your Instagram photos! Looking at the gallery of designed cases, they look amazing – who wouldn’t want an iPhone case that shows all the beautiful Instagram photos you have taken? You guys can be sure that mine will be filled with Puggle photos!
As Diana previously discussed, there are many businesses jumping on the Instagram money train. It’s not surprising to find people wanting a tangible form of their über artistic photos via stickers, magnets, bracelets, canvases etc. What was surprising to find was that even the Instagram logo has taken on a life of its own. The logo is indicative of the photos Instagram takes with its old retro look, but who would have thought people would want to carry over the logo into other forms.
Here are a few we found on Etsy:
1. Handmade Felt Instagram Key Pouch, $17.90
Perfect for your keys & loose change.
2. Instagram Pins, $5 CAD
Only $5! We should buy some for our final presentation.
3. Flannel Instagram Pillow, $45
Cute. But not sure how comfortable it is.
4. Instagram iPhone iPod Crochet Handmade Case, $15
This one’s a steal, handmade and only 15 bucks.
5. Instachain – instagram keychain, $18
Using Instagram to sell their Instagram keychain.
These type of products really speaks to the adoption of Instagram into people’s day to day lives, even outside of the application. Individuals are now identifying themselves as Instagrammers by sporting these crafty accessories. It’s sort of like a club where if others recognize the logo on your iPod case, they’ll know you are an Instagrammer, and if people don’t recognize the logo, they’ll just think it’s a cute case.
Despite the growing number of Instagram competitors, certain applications manage to stand out. An app I have recently started using (and have been enjoying) is Streamzoo. “Create and share beautiful photos. Streamzoo your moment!”
The app won the ‘Best Android Photo Sharing App’ on 2011 Best App Ever Awards, and boasts extrememly high ratings in the Google Play market and the Apple iStore. A recent review on the app in the Google Play store states:
“One size doesn’t fit all…
Of course this is going to be compared to Instagram. In my opinion, the bigger variety of effects and most of all the ability to choose the size and dimensions of your picture, makes Streamzoo a winner over Instagram hands down.” (May 27th, 2012)
This reviewer is right, the app is constantly being compared to Instagram. So let’s take a look at some of the differences…
Instagram restricts users to a square shaped photo, and Streamzoo does not. Both apps feature filters and borders, but Streamzoo separates them, allowing borders to be added to any picture. Streamzoo also offers “tilt shift” options that allow users to blur a certain part of the photo (apparently something that is offered to iOS users of Instagram, but I wouldn’t know because I have an Android). In addition, Streamzoo offers color editing options like adjusting hue, contrast, saturation and brightness.
Streamzoo also offers the opportunity for users to share videos, combining the features of Viddy and Instagram.
The social network of Streamzoo also integrates the idea of reputation, allowing users to gain badges such as “cat lover” or “newbie.” Users also gain points for number of photos, followers, etc. This provides a stronger psychic income incentive to use the service.
Also, when you upload a photo on Streamzoo, there is a separate area to enter your hashtags or descriptions, making steams and hashtags an easier and more natural feature to use.
The application also offers online use, without a mobile device. Though Instagram has released their API and allowed others to create websites to view photos through, Streamzoo has done it themselves. Their website provides users the opportunity to view, upload, follow, comment, etc. This increases awareness, and more importantly for consumers, the usability and versatility of the application.
Right now, though Instagram boasts an insane amount of users, after posting only a few photos on Streamzoo, I have gotten more likes than ever before on Instagram. Also, many more people other than just your immediate friends comment or like the photo, providing for a richer and more social experience. Streamzoo provides motivation through points and badges to encourage users to post photos, follow streams, and tag.
Though more of your friends may be on Instagram, Streamzoo is growing fast. A look at Google Insights for Search reveals Breakouts (a positive change in growth more than 5000%) for the searches “streamzoo android” and “streamzoo instagram” in the last 12 months. Obviously, interest in the app is growing, and I hope that more users migrate to this application. See you there? I’m on Instagram too, but I’m slowly growing to love Streamzoo more.
Find me @Jelli004.
Stats on Streamzoo:
Google Play Market
4.6/5 Stars based on 10,169 Reviews
100,000-500,000 Installs in the Past 30 Days
4.5/5 Stars based on 480 Reviews
From AppData.com = use through FB
Streamzoo – 3,000 DAU – 30,000 MAU
Instagram – 2,200,000 DUA – 17,100,000 MAU
Even though the name Extragram sounds very similar to Instagram, don’t mistake it for the same company. Extragram is a third party web-based application that uses Instagram’s API (Application Programing Interface) to access your own Instagram photos once you log onto the Extragram website. This site is so new that my virus software hasn’t completed a review of it yet so click at your own risk, but my computer did not seem to have any apparent issues upon visiting the site.
Extragram is not the only website to bring you your Instagram photos on your desktop. There are many other sites that use the same API of Instagram such as Instagrid, Webstagram, and Gramfeed. I would highly encourage you to check out these other websites and compare them to the mobile device. All of these web-based viewers allow the user to view photos of the people they follow as well as the ability to like or comment on a photo, with the ease of the desktop and desktop keyboard. For those of us that are in an office for the majority of the day and want to see some fancier photos than the ones on Facebook, this can provide an excellent alternative as a web-based application.
The interesting part of this though, is really the strategy behind the release of the API to any public developer. One would initially think that Instagram would want to be the company to develop a desktop based web application, but this has not been the case. A solid revenue model could have been created through the already frequently visited Instagram website and utilizing small ads off to the side of the website. These would not have disturbed the users and they would have brought substantial revenue to the company as it has done for Facebook. Instead, Instagram has released the API. These API’s are available through the development portion of the Instagram site. After cruising through the pages of hypertext codes, I could not find anywhere that showed a charge for getting their API. It appears that Instagram is currently operating under the philosophy that the increased word of mouth will help the brand, and allowing other companies to take the risk of a successful desktop model, which allows them to maintain their brand integrity as Instagram being solidly for the mobile devices. Instagram is really taking additional steps to encourage the creative aspect of the application with allowing access to others within their photo databases.
So we have yet to really see a full revenue model come forward from this company and its parent company of Facebook. Although Facebook has recently released a beta test to only limited users where they can pay for comments to show longer on friends home pages and have priority in the listings . This ability is activated with what is called a highlight button and they are testing consumer price points right now. The payment can be made through paypal or credit card. It will be interesting to see if Instagram utilizes this type of technology to have your photos show up on the top of your friends walls, all for the right price.
So take some time to browse how great your own pictures look on a 13 inch screen rather than a 3.5 inch one. We encourage you to experiment with your creativity on the larger scale. 🙂
As buzz around Instagram and social sharing networks continues to build, competitors become increasingly relevant. Here we’ll take a look at the competitors in an in-depth extension of an earlier post.
Hipster –Camera and filters like Instagram, but rectangular. To these, users can add locations and comments, creating postcards. The app will also add the location automatically through GPS. Some reviews mention issues with glitches when certain filters are chosen. The concept of the application is very cool, and I personally enjoy using it. I haven’t had any issues yet, but hopefully the app can get the issues worked out.
- As of Jan 19th, 2012 the app had 100,000 users (1).
- From GooglePlay site: Rated 3.7/5 (203 ratings).
- 10,000-50,000 downloads from the Android market in the last 30 days.
Picplz – an app much like Instagram, with camera filters and a built in social network. The meme creator function is a nice feature. Many people love the app, but have been experiencing problems with updates.
- 40,000 Monthly Active Users through Facebook (2)
- From GooglePlay site: Rated 4.0/5 (8,346 ratings)
- 1M-5M installs from the Android market in the last 30 days
EyeEm – Groups photos based on categories – locations, what you are doing, a certain type of food, etc. – much like hashtags. This idea makes it easier to find new friends or followers. Many reviewers are requesting Google + integration, which could say something about user demographics. Some comments about glitches, but overall the app seems to perform smoothly.
- 20,000 MAU through Facebook (3)
- From GooglePlay site: Rated 4.0/5 (388 ratings)
- 10,000-50,000 downloads from Android market in the last 30 days.
PicYou – an Instagram-like app that boasts itself as exclusively for the iPhone. However, the reviews displayed on the App store site are negative. Someone actually recommends Instagram over the app, and another calls the app “really lame.” With 100,00 monthly active users through Facebook vs. 17 million on Instagram, I believe much of this negative sentiment comes from the fact that the social network is so much smaller than Instagram’s.
Overall, it seems that PicYou doesn’t really offer any additional services compared to Instagram.
Path – a “smart journal that lets you share your life with the ones you love.” (5)The app is designed for use between close friends, and it limits the number of friends to 150. However, you can still upload photos through Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare and Tumblr. An interesting feature – users can respond to moments with one of five emotions: smile, frown, gasp, laugh and love. The reviews for the app are extremely positive, with a larger fan base than most that is actively growing. The application offers an interface that is described as “beautiful” and “snazzy and sleek” in most recent reviews.
- 570,000 Monthly Active Users through Facebook alone (6)
- From GooglePlay site: Rated 4.2/5 (11,467 ratings)
- 500,000-1M installs from Android market in the last 30 days
To put it all in perspective, here is a quick summary on Instagram. The comments in the Apple store state that the app is “better than Facebook” and “this is the best app ever I LOVE THIS APP.” The reviews on GooglePlay are just as good. I suppose there is something to be said for a streamlined experience and a massive social network.
- 17 million Monthly Active Users through Facebook alone, and 40 million overall (App data, reference old post)
- From GooglePlay site, Rated 4.6/5 (601,428 ratings)
- 10M-50M Android installs in the last 30 days
- From the Apple store site, Rated 5/5 (537,624 ratings)
Have you ever used these competitor apps?
2. Do words look awkward if there is no #hashtag in front of them?
3. Speaking of hashtags, do you already know all the rules Diana covered in her post?
4. Do you know all the filter names by heart?
5. Who even says Instagram, it’s IG, duh.
6. Are you an iPhone user? How could you have used the app for so long, if it only just came out for Android ?
7. Is your goal for the day to make the Popular page?
If you answered yes to the majority of the questions above, congrats, you are a diehard Instagrammer. So who exactly are your fellow Instagrammers? Well, we took to the streets to find out (more like Yahoo! Answers)! Here’s what we found:
- Typically the person is connected to some other type of social media (e.g. Twitter or Facebook)
- User of Apple or Android (only platforms available to-date)
- Celebrities are a draw. Either you follow them or you are one.
These results aren’t surprising, but in reality, with over 40 million users now snapping pics with Instagram, there really is no ‘typical’ Instagrammer. Even with this limited information, marketers can still narrow down their applications of Instagram in their campaign efforts. Celebrities can not only tweet their fav products/paid to endorse products, they can now ‘Instagram them’ to their loyal followers.
There is definitely a culture that emerges as an application gains popularity where people know the do’s and don’ts, the special IG lingo and how to get the most from the application (which filters to use, how to make the popular page). If you are really interested in finding out more about your fellow Instagrammers, check out an Instagram MeetUp.
Have you noticed any common themes among your fellow Instagrammers?
After the recent Instablogger presentation we gave last week, we wanted to dig further on one of the issues we briefly touched upon. It is the marketing implications of the spread of Instagram worldwide. While it’s extremely popular in the U.S., it’s success is just beginning across the pond.
In comparing the stats of users in the U.S. for those in the U.K., we can see that the gender usage rates are completely opposite, see slide 10. From a marketing perspective, this is important to note, because as we discussed earlier, Instagram campaigns will soon be mainstream. In order for a campaign to be successful, it’s important to consider the brand’s target audience. Not only that, but how does that audience use the Instagram application.
A quick survey done at an Instagram Art Show in London found that people used Instagram for six key functions: “sharing, documentation, seeing, community, creativity and therapy. People wanted more than anything to exchange images with others throughout the network, find people with whom they had common interests, document the world around them and see provide ‘visual status updates’ to their friends.”
Another survey conducted in the UK doesn’t dispute the results above, but gives a little more detail on why some people use the popular application. 89% of males and 80% of females admitted they use the app to increase their attractiveness.The survey also resulted in some other interesting conclusions. You’ll have to check them out.
While the reasons in the U.S. overlap with some of the main reasons found at the London Art Show survey, based on a few articles, these themes seemed to dominate: self-expression, record memories, boredom, as a hobby, revenge (show ex you are doing great), looking at others pics, for fun, and boosts self-esteem for taking nice pics.
It appears that the uses of Instagram in the U.S. and the U.K. have similarities. Maybe there is a difference in what these people like to take photos of, how/words they hashtag, when they are likely to use it etc. This type of information would be extremely valuable to marketers.
What’s your reason for using the app?
If you haven’t heard yet, there is an app for Android and iPhone that has been released that is getting quite a bit of attention recently. This is not a new app, as instructional videos have existed since 2009 and it won Disruptive Innovator at the 2010 Deloitte Fast 50 awards. The app is called Layar.
A large part of the reason that this application is getting more attention recently is the integration feature that they have installed with Instagram. Before we can go into specific details on these features a description of the Layar app needs to be discussed. The Layar app works by showing you a video imaging of what you show through your phone’s camera lense. It then works to produce a layer of text and pictures of information outlining the different stores, restaurants, real estate, etc that are around you. This way you can directly look at a building and see the restaurants inside. The visual effects are exciting and have worked to develop a concept called Augmented Reality, which means the changing or modifying of what your phone shows as the camera images by inserting the database information on top of the view. So how does this relate to Instagram?
Recently, this application has allowed you to complete these same actions, but rather than see images and texts about restaurants or stores, you can see Instagram images that have been uploaded around you. So if you are at your home and you hold your phones camera up to show your neighbor’s house, you should be able to see any Instagram photos that have been uploaded from that location. Screen shots have been attached below that show the search that came up when pointing my phone at a wall and facing another persons house. This is really incredible technology as it allows you to connect in new ways with those neighbors or people close by. It also can help to identify trends in certain areas, for example if one was to do this same search near a dog park, there should be a lot of cute dog pictures that would be uploaded and viewable. It is almost like locational hashtags.
And here are the Instagram photo capability displayed largely:
Lets just run a quick Groundswell check of the integration of this Layar application with Instagram to see how much potential it has:
1. Does it allow people to connect? – Yes, through seeing other people’s photos who are nearby.
2. Is it effortless to sign up for? -Yes, with a simple download you can be viewing the photos uploaded near you.
3. Does it shift power from the institution to people? -Not really as there is not much of a marketing relation with this type of product, other than choosing a restaurant or store that is purely close by rather than based on advertising dollars.
4. Does the community generate enough content to sustain itself? -Yes, as the photos uploaded alone by people close by would continue to provide a large amount of content.
5. Is it an open platform that invites partnership? -Absolutely, we just saw it with Instagram.
Passing 4 out of the 5 isn’t too bad and could lead to a promising future. Check it out and I encourage you to give this cool application a try, again, it’s available for both iPhone and Android users. If you’ve already tried it, what do you think?