Step one: obtain a ton of users. Step two: get brands to leverage your service. Step three: get celebrities to use your service and promote it. Step four: mainstream. While these steps obviously aren’t a one-size-fits-all thing, they have been a pretty standard set of rules for a number of popular startups in recent years. Twitter and Foursquare immediately jump to mind. And now it looks like Instagram just hit step three.
Hip hop artist Snoop Dogg has begun using Instagram. Earlier this afternoon, he tweeted out his first picture to his nearly 2.5 million followers. It’s Snoop in a suit “bossin it up”. And yes, he used a filter.
Snoop’s arrival on Instagram follows the service quickly getting one million users to sign up in less than three months. And it follows a wave of brands coming on board to try it out. Again, step one and two.
But Snoop’s usage of Instagram is particularly interesting because it appears that he’s also promoting a brand. His tweet reads “Bossin up wit dat Blast” — and is appears Snoop is holding some sort of Blast drink that he’s likely endorsing (it looks like this may even be a photoshoot for it). So it’s almost as if he’s crossing step two and three. But I’m sure Instagram loves that. They’ve been thinking about the best ways to get brands to interact with and use their service. This is a potentially great way.
The next question is if Snoop will persuade some of his fellow celebrities to join him on Instagram. Snoop seems to be the rare celeb early-adopter type. Back in August of last year, we noted that he was using Foursquare.
Regardless, Snoop’s Instagram tweets to his millions of followers can only help the young startup. I suspect Snoop will have a lot more than 19 followers there soon.
Instagram is a free photo sharing application that allows users to take photos, apply a filter, and share it on the service or a variety of other social networking services, including Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare, Tumblr, Flickr, and Posterous. The application is compatible with any iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch running iOS 3.1.2 or above or any Android device running Android 2.2 or above. In an homage to both the Kodak Instamatic and Polaroid cameras, Instagram confines photos into a square...