How Instagram managed to gather 100 million users in the last 6 months of 2016 and what this growth means in Social Media terms

December 23, 2016

The total number of active Social Media users exceeded 2.5 billion which means a rate of over 30% of the world population.

Plus, we must take into account the fact that 2 billion users are accessing SM via mobile.

If 41% of Western Europe’s population accesses social networks from mobile, the numbers are somewhat lower in Eastern Europe (32%) but higher in North America (52%).

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  • World’s map with Social Media users via mobile

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  • World’s map with Social Media users [source]

The most famous Social Media platforms in 2016

2016 was a good year for the SM platforms in terms of gathering new users. Facebook continues to be the preferred platform: there are over 1.7 billion users worldwide. [source]

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  • WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger have also surpassed one billion users
  • Twitter and Skype have passed the threshold of 300 million
  • Snapchat reached 200 million users and LinkedIn have +100 active users as wel

But the largest increase was recorded by Instagram: though in June there were about 500 million accounts, now the figure pass 600 million.

About Instagram community

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The Facebook-owned company was founded 6 years ago, on October 6th and by the end of that year already reached 1 million users. February 26th 2013 marked o new milestone: 100 million active users.

  • March 25th, 2014: 200 million users
  • December 10th, 2014: 300 million users
  • September 22th, 2015: 400 million users
  • June 21st, 2016: 500 million users

Today we’re proud to announce our community has grown to more than 600 million Instagrammers. And the last 100 million of you joined in just the past six months” [Instagram blog, on December 15th]

What makes Instagram to be a fashionable platform?

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Although there are no studies to show what led to this spectacular growth, Instagram is a platform totally changed today from what it offered a year ago.

Maybe the most important moment was the launched of the Instagram Stories: “a feature that lets you share all the moments of your day, not just the ones you want to keep on your profile. As you share multiple photos and videos, they appear together in a slideshow format: your story“. [Instagram blog]

  • since December, Instagram began allowing all users to stream Live Video for as long as an hour via Stories
  • last week Instagram added a feature to let users secretly save other users’ posts to a private folder on their profile.

All of these, plus the fact that now users can hide inappropriate comments based on certain key words and phrases placed Instagram in an increasingly close competition with Snapchat.

It is certain, Instagram vs Snapchat is one of the major competitions that should be followed up in 2017, especially because there are important voices that say that “Instagram will kill Snapchat“.

2017 is just around the corner so, let the competition begin!

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