An Idea for Instagram and Twitter

Writer’s Note: It’s late. I’ve been sick. But, I can’t sleep until I write what’s in my brain. Ever been there? That’s me at the moment. So, if this doesn’t make sense, you’ll know why. 



Photo via Karora (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

I’ve been thinking…

Dangerous, I know. 

I’ve been thinking about the world of constant change we experience in social media. Twitter came out with recent updates. Google+ has been doing upgrades of their own. Instagram made some well-publicized changes last year. Facebook? Seems like they’re always changing something, doesn’t it?

Each platform makes changes in order to either A) make more money OR B) improve user experience. More often than not, it doesn’t feel like the changes are what users really want or need. Let’s look at Instagram.

When Instagram announced that it would allow Direct Messaging (DM), initial reaction from many was GREAT! My initial reaction was, HUHA key ingredient was missing from the equation for Instagram. Lists.

For sports-related accounts, many have huge follower counts (as I documented here). How is a team or athlete supposed to choose a few people to DM out of hundreds of thousands of followers?

Yeah, not happening.

As of this date, they still haven’t made any type of change like this. In that same post, I suggested Twitter create a function to “tweet to” certain Twitter lists. This would be similar to posting to a specific Circle in Google+. Instead of listening to me, Twitter is working on what some are calling, becoming more like Facebook. 

I don’t know about that. Okay, maybe I do and I don’t want to admit it. But, if Instagram and Twitter won’t listen to me about the above ideas (which we all know they should), maybe they’ll listen to this idea.


For sports organizations, whether professional or college, they want to make money, right? Right. Who doesn’t? Since both Instagram and Twitter (Vine) have video capabilities, why not add an Annotation feature, similar to what YouTube (Google+) do? YouTube annotations on videos are explained here:

Annotations are clickable text overlays on YouTube videos. Annotations are used to boost engagement, give more information, and aid in navigation. Be inventive! Producers are consistently finding new, creative uses for annotations.

One of the most common uses, according to YouTube?

  • Highlight your dot com or merchandise store.

Annotations can drive your viewers, or followers in the case of Instagram/Vine, to a designated landing page, say a merchandise item in a team store.

If Instagram and/or Twitter (Vine) were to add this function to their videos, that would provide a way for sports organizations, teams, athletes and brands to monetize through social media. Actual ROI (return on investment) could be measured. ROI is something that, to me, is seemingly out of reach at this point in the life of social media.

It doesn’t have to be just merchandise or monetization. It could be a link to a story or another video on the team/athlete’s website.

Social media requires a great deal of time investment to be successful. Sports entities or brands want a return either through revenue or engagement. Instagram and Twitter can provide that through annotations in their videos. 

How? I don’t know. I’m just a thinker. It’s up to someone else to develop it. 

Provided they give me proper credit of course.


Writer’s note: Okay, my sleepy thought is finished. What do you think? Do you think this is something that would make Instagram and Vine videos more attractive than they already are? Will it take them to another level in usage? Or, do I just need to go to bed? 


CadChica Sports

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