February 2012 –Pinterest becomes not only the fastest growing social networking site ever, but the fastest standalone site in the history of the internet to hit 10M unique visits
March 2012 –Facebook rolls out Timeline for all brand pages, placing greater emphasis on visual storytelling
April 2012 -Facebook buys Instagram for $1bn
April 2012 –Instagram user base grows by more than 10M in 10 days as it launches its Android app
I could bombard you with mountains of stats, but from the four milestones above, it’s apparent that image-led communication is the breakthrough social trend of 2012. A recent study by ROI Research found that when users engage with friends on social media sites, it's the pictures that they enjoy the most. Forty-four per cent of respondents are more likely to engage with brands if they post pictures, rather than any other media.
The old cliché ‘a picture tells a thousand words’ has never been more apt, as new social networks are formed and the old heavyweights such as Facebook and Twitter adopt strategies that highlight that visual communication is here to stay. Both sites have changed their design and implemented new features to place greater emphasis on visual storytelling. Facebook last week tested one such feature which is testament to the success smart marketers are having with visual content.
A key influencer of this trend has been the shifting habits of technology users, with mobile now becoming one of the main ways that we consume media and access social networks. This proliferation of visual content, when coupled with the content already out there, has led to data overload, and has created a gap in the market for innovators to come up with ways to curate this mountain of content.
Here at Yomego, we are always on the lookout for innovation, and I just came across a new site that is tackling both of the above trends. Worldcam, which launched in September, aggregates Instagram photos based on specific locations around the world.
It gets better. Worldcam aggregates at an extremely granular level, so you can actually search for the locations of buildings or public addresses in any city, and it will show you a list of all the Instagram photos tagged there. People take Instagram photos everywhere, and we all love a nosey, so this kind of platform seems natural to me (if with a fairly high stalker potential). Let’s test it out. I wonder what it’s like inside the Edinburgh Dungeon…..
Hmm, I wonder if they have started putting up the Christmas decorations in George Square…..
We're looking to pimp our boardroom, I wonder how one of our competitors has kitted out theirs…?
All in all – a nice tool for aggregating visual content. At present, only Instagram photos are pulled into the site. It will be interesting to see whether photos posted directly to sites such as Facebook and Twitter will be implemented as the site matures.
While there are already images of some public locations within the Google Maps/Panoramio link up, these tend to be of public places; outdoors; linked only to Panaramio profiles, and not regularly updated. Worldcam provides a constantly updating, location-based personal/private view of the world through images.
By client insight manager John Paul @johnpaulfox @yomegosocial