Opinion 5 minute read
In terms of popularity, Instagram has been climbing the ladder quite quickly - its 1 billion monthly active users would vouch for that.
However, the social media platform does not want to stop there! It aims to double this number within a span of the next few years. Hence, it has been searching for new ways to help businesses reach their audience and for users to create popular content.
When it comes to social media marketing, video is one of the most useful and effective content formats. For instance, since the launch of Instagram Stories in August 2018, they have become a huge part of what makes social media so popular. However, there has been one frustrating aspect of this feature – it has a limited video length of 15 seconds. Hence, Instagram users have had to be creative about how to get across complete stories by either uploading a series of images or using video splicer tools and uploading a bunch of 15-second video segments.
However, with the launch of IGTV, in short for Instagram TV, users can now share videos in the long-form vertical format for up to one hour.
IGTV, brings the feeling of “flipping channels on a TV” to life, without even having to deal with advertisements, but also without having the variety and versatility of YouTube.
Ways To Use IGTV Effectively
Of all of the social media networks, Instagram is the only one that is truly listening to the navigation of its users. It is currently the most engaging and popular social channel. Therefore, since Instagram debuted its stand-alone app for long-form video, IGTV, there has been a lot of fanfare and excitement around it among marketers. It offers a different way to reach people in the place where they are already spending most of their time.
Building a library of videos formatted specifically for IGTV opens a wide door to get more viewership, go deeper with an audience, and provide more value. With this comparatively new feature, it also means that your brand will stand out. In addition to previews in the main feed, IGTV content is showcased in the Discover section, as notifications on Instagram, and presented as recommended video on related videos.
Below are six ways in which you can effectively use this feature for social media marketing:
1. Include calls to action
You can include any necessary links in your descriptions, which is a nice opportunity to use a strong call to action. Tell your users what they should do after watching your video. Hence, do not forget to use a strong call to action in your video. This call to action may lead your followers to other relevant content, website, or a product.
2. Mind your bio
When you create your IGTV channel, the first two sentences of your bio will appear as a description of this channel. Thus, you can use your bio to attract more viewers to your IGTV channel. Besides, you may want to change your Instagram “name” — the bold text below your profile picture.
3. Invest in quality
First, you do not need to make your videos perfect. IGTV is not Netflix. However, if you want to make your audience watch a full 10-minute video, this video must look good. People have shorter attention span than a goldfish, which is why the shorter the video, the more engaging it is. Ten minutes is a lot of time for the average Instagram user, so make sure to use various editing tools that will help you create a nice video with no long pauses or meaningless action.
Even though this app is oriented towards vertical videos, it allows people to watch IGTV on their desktops as well as on phones. Thus, your video should look good even on a desktop monitor.
4. Be consistent
The best way to keep your audience engaged is to be consistent in your posts. Imagine a TV producer who plans the whole season of a show in advance. Think of your videos as of episodes, which are logically connected and provide links so that your viewers can navigate among all your episodes.
5. Adjust your existing content for IGTV
If you already have some videos that became popular on YouTube, you can repurpose them for your IGTV channel. Although this app is intended for vertical videos, you can turn your videos vertically or resize them so that they can fit the vertical screen. Get creative and use editing software.
6. Stick with your brand
Finally, the most important thing is to be authentic. If a polished look is not what your brand is known for, do not try to reconsider your approach just to make a beautiful IGTV video. This app is a perfect place to share ‘behind-the-scenes’ videos and to show how your team creates products or content.
IGTV has a lot to offer for business, bloggers, and creators of any kind, and many brands and influencers are already tapping into this easy-to-use long-form video channel with plenty of success. For instance, Vogue US shared a series called “Beauty Secrets," which features well-known influencers testing makeup products which gained millions of views.
Netflix is another company that has used the platform to feature oddball humor such as the strange-yet-hilarious footage of Cole Sprouse, star of the studio's hit show Riverdale, eating a burger. The video has garnered a lot of popularity among the users and has been shared widely on the social media platform.
Sandhya Sutodia is co-founder, Turiya Communications LLP