Ever since Facebook acquired Instagram, there has been speculation about how the image-sharing site intends to generate revenue. Instagram COO Emily White told The Wall Street Journal earlier this month that users can expect to see advertisements popping up on their feeds within the next year.
So Instagram is no longer to be ad-free. Pinterest also announced last week that it will soon begin testing out a new ad strategy. This can mean only one thing: Where advertisers go, data analytics firms will follow, especially where there is an endless stream of data from the masses to attempt to monetize.
Posting has become a gigantic lab experiment for Madison Avenue and the social media companies eager to prove their relevance to big corporations, specifically, in terms of return on investment for ad dollars, and sentiment analysis and engagement are quickly becoming cottage industries for Twitter and Facebook content.
Instagram's incorporation of advertisements is intended to entice brands to spend money sponsoring content, using the app's 150 million habitual users as bait. So it's no surprise that at least one social media data analysis company has already entered the nonexistent—at least before this week—realm of Instagram engagement analysis: Crowdbabble.
The Toronto-based start-up just launched its Instagram Analytics solution to provide brands with insights on user activity, which it claims is the first of its kind. Since Crowdbabble's launch in June, it's been limited to Facebook analytics, and it's just getting off the ground—the company's accounts range from freelancers to Samsung's Middle East division's Facebook page, totaling about 400 clients in all.
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But Crowdbabble CEO Abbas Alidina sees the expansion to Instagram as a strategic move to capitalize on a surge in spending on Instagram analytics when advertisements begin appearing.
"People have been requesting it actually," Alidina said. "We feel as though there will be a lot of brands investing a lot of money in this area."