The well reported acquisition of Instagram by social media giant Facebook highlights just how important photography is to the firm’s business model, and the wider search community.
Whilst the focus in the general media has been on the $1bn sum Facebook have shelled out for a company that is less than two years old, the bigger picture has not been widely reported.
What urged the company to pay such a high fee was essentially the threat it apparently posed to them losing market share of all things social. Instagram was starting to perform very well in the SERPs for example, with their users inadvertently mastering SEO through their captioning of images.
Exactly what Facebook will do with the new toy is still unclear though. Essentially, it has no business model in place, with no advertising structure.
That there are somewhere in the region of 27 million users shows its potential though. However, there are reports that a significant number of users have deactivated their accounts following news of the acquisition.
Many industry commentators have suggested that the move is company’s final hurrah before they go public in a few weeks time.
The flotation is already expected to be the biggest the world has ever seen, but taking this course of action now puts focus back on the event. It will also show potential investors that the firm is far from a has-been and has ambitious plans for future growth.
On a wider scale though, it shows that written content whilst still important, now also shares its platform with other forms of communication.