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Instagram Follows In Reddit's Footsteps

GM, and happy November... aka the beginning of Christmas.

Today's Story

What's up Minters? Today's story is about a relatively small company adopting NFT technology.

Just kidding. It's about Instagram, the social media platform with over 500 million daily active users, adding a fully-fledged NFT marketplace to their app.

This news comes in light of our story last week, where we predicted that Reddit's collectible avatar success would lead to other social media giants adopting NFT wallets and marketplaces.

Well, what are we waiting for; let's dive in! 🧜‍♀️

The Timeline

This ain't Instagram's first rodeo with NFTs. They have been carefully expanding NFT integrations since early last year.

May 2022 - Instagram gives certain users the ability to connect wallets to their profiles.

“The more different tools that creators have to be able to make money, the more they’re going to be able to do their work and hire people to join their team, to build out even more use cases. And that will propel all these platforms forward,”

Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Meta, in May 2022

August 2022 - Instagram expands the above testing to over 100 countries worldwide.

"There is a massive opportunity to make hundreds of billions of dollars, or even trillions, over time as the sector matures... I’m confident that we’re going to be glad that we played an important role in building this,”

Mark Zuckerberg, after Q2 losses of $2.8 billion

November 2022 (this week) - Instagram says "screw it" and announces the infrastructure that will allow users to create and sell NFTs in the Instagram app and begins testing with a select group of users

“Blockchain has a role in this because it can enable entirely new business models for creators that give them more control over their work and audiences, and how they monetize... we believe Web3 tech, like blockchain, will positively enhance the economic model for creators by giving them the ability to create new types of digital assets to monetize,”

Stephane Kasriel, Meta’s Head of Commerce and Fintech

Why This News Is Mega Important

As you've probably guessed already, this is big-time news. Reddit and now Instagram have started the process of bringing NFTs and blockchain technology to the world's biggest audiences.

Public adoption will help with a couple of things.

#1 Ease of use

One common qualm with NFTs is how hard they are to buy and sell. Although this is a false narrative, there is definitely a slight learning curve with the blockchain infrastructure. The engineers at Instagram and Reddit will make this technology easier to use so that the everyday person can do it, regardless of age or experience with NFTs.

#2 Accessibility

"With great power comes great...accessibility?"

Typically, celebrities and crypto enthusiasts hold the predominant, blue-chip NFT collections. This will change soon. As we saw with Reddit's digital collectibles, the everyday person will become a holder of some kind of NFT sooner than later. It could be a profile picture NFT, an NFT given to fans of professional sports teams, members of a fraternity or sorority, etc.

Accessibility is going to shoot through the roof very soon.

What It Means For Consumers

The number one complaint we hear when people go to buy their first NFT is that it's too hard. You first have to setup a wallet. Then you need to fund your wallet with ETH. Then you need to connect your wallet to OpenSea and make sure you buy the right NFT without getting scammed.

We believe Instagram can solve this.

Today you swipe through your Insta stories and decide to tap the buy button because you can't live without that 1992 USA Dream Team crew neck sweatshirt (hypothetically-speaking), could work for NFTs.

Instagram will set you up with a wallet (they may or may not call it that) and you'll probably buy a "digital collectible (aka an NFT) and voila! You have your first NFT.

Platforms like Reddit and now Instagram will onboard millions to their first NFT. And we just described the scenario of BUYING an NFT. On Insta consumers will also be able to create, mint, and sell them too. Here is an example of what selling an NFT on Insta could look like...

What It Means For Businesses

Instagram is a major hub for businesses (there are over 200 million businesses on the platform), so this news will completely change how they interact with consumers.

For those that don't know, Facebook and Meta have a subscription service for creators to monetize themselves. Subscribers can see exclusive content from their favorite content creators for a monthly fee. Subscription services and NFTs are two peas in a pod, so we wouldn't be shocked to see platforms combine the two (Facebook Stars is a good example of this).

Who's Next?

Elon Musk's side project (AKA Twitter) is probably the next domino to fall. Honestly, we're pretty surprised Twitter is so far behind the ball on this. The NFT/crypto/web3 community has deep roots on Twitter. It has been, and always will be, the home of its most active, influential members.

Twitter has allowed users to use NFTs as profile pictures for quite a while, and it looks like it's beginning to roll out a new feature called "NFT Tweet Tiles."

With Elon at the helm, a known crypto enthusiast, it's only a matter of time before the platform opens its own wallet and marketplace as well.

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That concludes this week's version of The Mint! Thanks for reading, and make sure to share your freshly-minted knowledge with your friends and coworkers.