Instagram Hits 300 Million Monthly Users, Surpasses Twitter

instagramOn Wednesday, Instagram CEO Kevin Systrom took to the company's blog to announce that the photo and video sharing platform has surpassed 300 million users. That means that Instagram now has more users than Twitter, which reports a total of 284 million users. Considering that Twitter is more than four years its senior, Instagram's growth is staggering, and it's a harbinger for where social is headed.

Instagram is a simple, easy-to-use way to reach an interested audience. For PR pros who are still weary about joining Instagram—that is, if there are any of you left out there—here are 5 reasons to get your brand or organization on the platform:

  1. Instagram beats Facebook and Twitter in engagement. An April Forrester study found that Instagram delivered brands 58 times more engagement per follower than Facebook and 120 times more engagement per follower than Twitter.
  2. Your peers are already on Instagram. According to Simply Measured, 86 percent of the top global brands are active on the Instagram, and 73 percent post at least one photo per week.
  3. Instagram is making it easier for brands to join. In addition to sponsored posts, which were recently boosted by a suite of measurement tools, Instagram announced Wednesday that it will begin to roll out verified badges for celebrities, athletes and brands in an effort to combat spam and impersonation accounts.
  4. People love pictures. We process images 60,000 times faster than text. Other platforms include photography and video, but Instagram is a wholly visual platform.
  5. The growth isn't going to stop. Instagram isn't done at 300 million. Jim Squires, Instagram's director of market operations, told Business Insider in May that the company is focused on getting 1 billion users. Considering the service added 100 million users in the last nine months alone, that hefty goal starts to sound pretty realistic.

Follow Brian Greene on Twitter: @bw_greene