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Facebook Confirms it will Monetize Instagram, But How?

by Todd Haselton | December 12, 2012December 12, 2012 1:00 pm EST


Facebook has plans to monetize Instagram. We’re not surprised by that, not in the least because it needs to somehow turn its $1 billion Instagram purchase into a profitable buy. But how will it monetize the service? A recent Business Insider article suggests that Facebook is going to add advertisements to Instagram.

Ugh, that would be awful. I’d probably leave the service, considering how much I hate the advertisements Facebook is already implementing into its news feedBusiness Insider learned about the monetization from Facebook’s Carolyn Everson, the social network’s vice president of global marketing. She never and said that ads were going to be implemented outright, though. Here’s exactly what Everson told Business Insider:

Eventually we’ll figure out a way to monetize Instagram.

That’s it. So I’m not reading this specifically as a promise to add advertisements. In-app purchases are huge right now, and drive tons of revenue. What if Instagram added something less intrusive, like an option to buy additional features or filters? Or, as our own Brandon Russell suggests, what if there’s a free version with ads and a paid version that costs 99 cents? That would make more sense, and certainly wouldn’t drive me away. I’d cough up a buck, no problem.

We’ll see, though. Everson didn’t provide an exact time frame for when Facebook plans to monetize Instagram.

Todd Haselton

Todd Haselton has been writing professionally since 2006 during his undergraduate days at Lehigh University. He started out as an intern with...