Traffic surges as Bieber joins Instagram

If you have Bieber Fever like me, you’ll be happy to know that Justin Bieber just sent out his first photo using the popular Instagram photo service. FOLLOWED.

Instagram is a photo sharing service that lets users add filters or effects to their iPhone photos and share them.

Although the the majority of Instagram members currently share photos via Twitter, users can also collect friends and followers on Instagram’s own photo-powered network, liking and commenting on friend’s photos.

So who cares if Bieber sent out a photo on Instagram? Two parties: Bieber’s 11 million plus followers, and of course, the folks at Instagram.

After the Biebs sent out the instragram photo late Thursday night, the service experienced an influx of traffic as 50 new followers per minute added Bieber on Instagram. Currently the Biebs boasts 5,260 users after tweeting only one photo.

The photo? A picture of infamous L.A. traffic.

Last month, Instagram reported over 5 million users. Sill, it has yet to be adopted into the mainstream like TwitPic or YFrog. With Bieber’s forray into Instagram-land, perhaps the service will pick up the necessary celebrity clout to make it mainstream. Bieber is arguably the most popular celebrity on the service, with Snoop Dogg in a close second place.

The power of celebrity users is important for services like Instagram, who get a lot of exposure through celebrity use. For example, when Charlie Sheen posted his first TwitPic, the photo got so much attention, analysts valued the CPM (cost per thousand impressions) at around $6, which means Sheen’s pics are worth $1600 each.

Enter Bieber into the equation and we’re talking about numbers astronomically more than what Sheen and TwitPic could have ever imagined mainly because everything the Canadian pop star touches clearly turns to gold.