1. 300 million usersworldwide and still counting. This is 10% of all Internet users worldwide that are active Instagram users. In less than 5 years, Instagram has managed to become one the leaders of the social media stratosphere. And the company is not about to slow down. After an exceptional growth of 900% between 2012 and 2013 (Statista, 2015), Instagram grew by 50% over the last 3 quarters of 2014 (Wagner, 2015). How did 2 Stanford graduates generate a $1 billion idea? And what makes Instagram so successful? Some figures: >300 million active users: this is the entire USpopulation 75 million daily users (Smith, 2014): this is equivalent to the Turkish population >30 billion photos shared on Instagram since its launch (Moth, 2015) >70 million photos are posted everyday (Moth, 2015) 23% of teens consider Instagram as their favorite social platform The Instagram success story Instagram: areal giant Know your customers If there is one thing that Instagram has proved the world, it?s that success comes only if you match with what your target wants. I know this sounds logical and you probably think you already do it. However, you would be surprised to know that this is one of the main flaws for both starting entrepreneurs and multinational corporates. When you develop a product, you want it to be the best product with the best features. You want it to be so complete that your customers won?t have to use competitors? offers to fulfill specific needs. Well guess what, you?re all wrong! Make it and keep it simple. This is the main secret of Instagram success. The photo-sharing app has very few features, but these features are the ones that fulfill the Instagrammers?needs the best. People wanted to take and share artistic photographs instantly, this is all that Instagram is about and they stick to it, keeping only what is relevant to their users. Kevin Systrom (Instagram founder) explains it all: ?Over time what you do is you simply take in data about what your users are doing and you focus on the stuff that people love the most. The second we focused on the photos with the filters, it became a phenomenon.?They spotted what the customers wanted and developed a product that gathers all the features needed while keeping it ridiculously simple and playful. Engage -Am plify-Convert Pictawall 2. Redefinesocial: Though Instagram is a social platform, it isn?t a social network in the Facebook or Twitter way. It allows people to follow each other and it doesn?t matter whether they know each other or not. We all have 1 or 2 Facebook friends that we have never actually met and we all think it is weird. But on Instagram we can follow dozens of people we don?t know anything about and that?s perfectly fine. The reason is that the social platform doesn?t allow much interaction among Instagrammers. All we can do is post pictures or videos and comment on them. Plus, people use it to display an ideal vision of their life. Liking or commenting on Instagram pictures is thus less intrusive than on Facebook (Moss, 2014). Createyour universe: The last advantage of Instagram I want to highlight is actually my favorite: creativity. As I have already said, its founders spotted the will from people to add an artistic side to their pictures. By allowing that, they also let people create their ideal world. That is the reason why I signed up. You are probably like me, always disappointed with the pictures you have taken in incredible places you have been. You have the shot but you lack the atmosphere. The shot is what you saw but not in the way you felt it. Filters do not only give an artistic value your pictures, they make them live and convey emotions through inanimate pictures. With Instagram you can make any moment of your life a masterpiece.