As Instagram has chosen to capitalize on its offering they have decided to let the user base personally take the burden. It continues to surprise me that service based companies still retreat to this simplest of simple business models, the ad-driven one. And by that ignore the trust they as a service have built over the years with loyal ambassadors, promoters and marketers. These companies fail to see the human/crowd component of their product, and that people not only own the brand in their stomach, but also has a majority stake in the continued success of the offering itself.
Why do companies like Instagram fail to see their users man-hours, imagination and creativity that has been spent here? Millions of hours into a product than now chooses to alienate them by using such an rude form of capitalization? Destroying a part of the service in order to let irrelevant outsiders push their sales pitches into the face and in between the friends, families and followers.
Instagram, you built the technology – we created the product
I completely understand the need for capitalization, it is the unimaginative and painful strategy they chose that bothers me.
Dear Instagram, how to make money as a service in the digital economy
1. Sell your product to the people, don’t sell the people as the product
2. Premium – allow people to buy an ad-free version or choose the free ad-supported one
3. Charge a minimal subscription fee
4. Design and sell tools for businesses to help them deserve a place in peoples feed
5. Sell something else: your data and insights, extra filters, digital merchandise, your software and tools etc.
6. Design and sell new functionality, services, physical or digital
7. Sell deeper partnerships with other content creators and media companies
8. Offer Corporations additional tools within the framework of what Instagram promises
People have showed you their imagination for years – now please show us yours!