When Facebook acquired Instagram for $1 billion this week, the immediate reaction – beyond a collective gasp at the price tag – was to question why the largest social network would invest so heavily in a simple, yet beloved, mobile photo sharing application. But as our David Berkowitz writes in MediaPost today, there should be no question why Facebook made this deal.
“Beyond any numbers and superlatives, what Facebook’s executives must have realized is that Instagram should never have existed. This should have been Facebook’s photo application all along. Facebook has more than 400 million mobile users, and any of them using a smartphone has to grapple with subpar photo sharing. Once Instagram fully integrated with Facebook, it became even more obvious that Facebook was far behind. As Business Insider put it, ‘Without photos, Facebook is toast.’”
The column continues to explain that Facebook’s acquisition of Instagram was really an acquisition of itself – or, rather, an acquisition of a functionality that Facebook could have very easily built into its service, but didn’t. “This acquisition once again reminds marketers how visual consumers are. Pinterest, Tumblr, and Instagram aren’t flukes; people enjoy expressing themselves via images,” writes Berkowitz.
You can read the full post over on MediaPost’s Social Media Insider blog. For more insight, check out some of our favorite quotes on the acquisition below.