In an effort to become a sustainable business, Instagram is the latest social network to enter the advertising game with an announcement that US users will begin seeing ads in their feeds. The company said it plans to make the ads part of the normal user experience and “start slow” with ads from brands already using the platform.
There are 123 Fortune 500 companies using Instagram, according to AllFacebook. So far, Nike is the most popular with 2.3 million followers. With 39 videos and counting, Target was the biggest users of Instagram video and Footlocker had posted more than 1,000 videos.
According to BusinessWeek, the adoption of the ad-based business model shouldn’t come as a surprise and anyone upset about these developments need to get over it. “Needless to say, this is the end of Instagram,” wrote author Joshua Brunstein. “Just the way the acquisition by Facebook was the end of Instagram…” Except it wasn’t, he continued, pointing out that Instagram has more than doubled in size since the Facebook acquisition.
Unlike other networks, Instagram says it will also allow users to filter out ads they don’t like. “We’ll also make sure you have control. If you see an ad you don’t like, you’ll be able to hide it and provide feedback about what didn’t feel right,” the company said in its blog announcement. “We’re relying on your input to help us continually improve the Instagram experience.”