Keepsy Brings Instagram to Your Bookshelf

Keepsy, the Menlo Park, Calif.-based scrapbook startup, has launched its first product, “Instant Album,” a way to order physical scrapbooks made from Instagram photo albums.

Keepsy is just the latest in a spate of new startups, like Sincerely and Memolane, focused on preserving and organizing the updates people publish online. But the concept of providing tools for users to create printed albums from their digital photos is nothing new: Products like Mixbook, Blurb and Apple’s iPhoto, to name just a few, do the same thing. Keepsy co-founder Blake Williams told me his company isn’t looking to compete with the existing players in the space, as Instant Album is targeted at consumers who are intimidated by the industry’s current offerings.

“The products that are out there right now allow you to do high-end stuff, coffee-table quality books that take hours and hours to build. We don’t want to compete on that level,” Williams said in an interview. “If you can’t build a great-looking album in less than two minutes with Instant Album, we’ve failed.” The company is also differentiated, for the moment at least, by being the only provider of printed Instagram photo albums, Williams pointed out.

Instant Album automatically selects what it deems the 35 most “interesting” photos from a user’s current Instagram account, based on an algorithm that takes into account, among other things, how many times a photo has been “liked” by other Instagram users. It then uses those photos to create an album within a selected template, like “Wedding” or “College.” Users can then further customize the album by adding, moving or deleting photos; changing the accompanying colors, text and fonts; and inserting clip art. Keepsy then prints the album in hardcover book form and ships it anywhere in the United States via FedEx. The company promises its 11-by-8.5 inch books, which start at $29.99, will arrive within 10 business days.

To date, Keepsy has raised about $1 million in venture capital; its investors include Dave McClure’s 500 Startups fund, James Hong, and Tim Connors. The company will likely look to raise another $3 million in the coming months to support its growth and bring on more staff, Williams said.