2014: The Year Instagram Trumps Facebook

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INSTAbodPhoto: Courtesy of Instagram.
Instagram has seen itself go from your standard photo-editing app to a full-fledged, social media dominatrix in just a matter of...what, mere months?! These days, photos aren't just photos anymore — they're Instagrams. One does not photograph something; they Instagram it. Lest one forgets, the Oxford Dictionary welcomed "selfie" into its lexicon this year, and we're betting "Instagram" — as both a noun and a verb — will likely join the club in 2014.

Ross Simmonds of Social Media Today penned a thoughtful article on three reasons why Instagram will usurp the social media throne from the likes of Facebook and Twitter next year. "Storytelling is the glue to building stronger relationships with your audience and being unforgettable," he writes. And, to build off of that, it's images that yield the most power (hey, they are worth a thousand words, right?). We've already seen social media companies leverage more visuals than text these days, i.e. Twitter's TwitPics showing up beneath a tweet rather than a link out. While Instagrams don't fall into that mix, Simmonds is positive the two platforms will find a happy medium to allow for both image types to seamlessly appear on a user's feed.

Simmonds continues to hype the growing use of mega-brands and distributers using the social media platform. "There are thousands of power users on Instagram who influence culture and the buying behaviours of their networks," he explains. "Identifying these people and paying to have them post about your brand is something that will become very common place in the upcoming year." Example A: Michael Kors extremely successful ad debut. Additionally, he believes that Instagram has yet to peak. Watch this space, he's essentially urging: With markerters beginning to really hone the potential of the service, we could be seeing a huge upsurge of brand-user interaction.

Frankly, Facebook hasn't been the same since it buried its photo album and wall video features. We've all gravitated to Instagram to hold on to the image nostalgia/envy we lost when those Facebook services were eschewed for fancy layouts and MySpace-like sharing abilities. Now, we're not social media oracles over here, but Simmonds brings up some pretty solid points. We're not going to completely ditch our Facebook profiles in 2014 (hey, we need a hub for all our Instagrams to live on), but there's just something more valid about sharing our lives via images than there is with text. A picture is worth a thousand words, right? (Social Media Today)