A last minute change of heart paid off big for these two entrepreneurs.
In the business world, it’s called a pivot: You recognize an unseen strength or weakness in your business, and you shift focus.
For Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger their big pivot actually came pre-launch.
Burbn was a mobile website the two had developed that was very similar to the popular check-in app Foursquare.
Systrom and Krieger were in the process of testing Burbn with friends. All the feedback they were getting was extremely positive. But… something didn’t quite feel right.
On the verge of launching their service to the world, the two men had a change of heart.
Did they really want to launch yet another check-in service? Or did they want to do something unique?
Both photographers, the founders decided they were going to pursue the passion. It was a hard choice that meant overhauling Burbn, removing almost all of the site’s functionality.
And what they were left with was Instagram.
Instagram is a bare-bones photo sharing service for smartphone users.
One of the most popular features is the ability to apply digital filters that give otherwise low-quality cellphone photos the look of old film. Photos are confined to a square shape, in homage to Kodak Instamatic and Polaroid cameras. What fans love about the app is its simplicity. Open Instagram, take a picture, apply a quick visual filter, then share it with your friends, all with a few simple taps on the screen.
The product launched in Apple’s App Store in 2010 and was an instant hit.
Less than two years later, Facebook bought Instagram for one billion dollars.
Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger exemplify two of our Business Axioms For Entrepreneurs: Pursue Your Passion and Go With The Flow.
A mobile photo sharing service that gives your pictures a retro look and feel. Now Why Didn’t I Think of That?