Showcasing the growth of the so-called visual web, Comscore (vla All Things D) today came out with figures to show that, in the US at least, Instagram had 7.3 million daily active users (DAUs) beating Twitter’s 6.9 million.
That’s very significant. Remember that as recently as last Christmas Instagram only had 16 million users, while at SXSW in March, it passed the 25 million total.
Looking at it over the course of the whole month, Twitter beat Instagram with 29 vs 22 million DAUs. However, Twitter is of course still 5x the size of Instagram, with c.500 million accounts.
On Twitter , RAAK’s Wessel van Rensburg commented that Twitter has a problem if Instagram is approaching it in size on mobile devices, as they share a lot of similarities from hashtags to loose connections. On that point, the real story isn’t even so much the user numbers. It is the fact that while only c.30% of Twitter’s user base is truly active, Instagram has managed to keep users engaged as the network has grown.
Back in March at SXSW, Instagram boss Kevin Systrom claimed that 2/3 of users had logged in the previous day. I assumed that those numbers would change for the worse.
However, Comscore tells us that the average Instagram user spent 257 minutes on the network over August, compared to 170 minutes for the average Twitter user who accessed it via a mobile.
Or to put it another way, Instagram users spend 51% more time with the service than (mobile) Twitter users. A big difference in engagement. Certainly these stats imply something that I’ve picked up from personal experience and observation: That when it comes to people who aren’t otherwise heavy users of social media, Instagram is doing a lot better at reeling them in.