Like the parent company Facebook, Inc. did with Messenger in 2011, Instagram set up IGTV (that is, Instagram TV) as a separate but related application in 2018. It was launched by Kevin Systrom, Instagram’s co-founder and CEO, at a special event in San Francisco. Videos are by far the most popular and preferred form of content on Instagram, and once can tell the service sought to consolidate on that, beyond its firmly established confines.
The arrival of IGTV was met with skepticism concerning its long-term success, but current trends seem to indicate that the application would keep increasing in popularity and usage. As a result of the popularity of IGTV, which can also be accessed from the Instagram application and website to an extent, social media influencers, celebrities, and businesses have swarmed into the mix. An increased commercial outlook has made it fertile for businesses.
THE ESSENCE OF IGTV
Primarily, IGTV permits users to upload both vertical and horizontal videos as short as fifteen seconds and as long as ten minutes. However, verified accounts are allowed to upload videos that are an hour long. The extended length of videos permitted is the primary distinguishing feature of IGTV. Videos can take the form of reviews, interviews, and demonstrations. These can always be boosted by an additional resource.
IGTV also permits users to share the first fifteen seconds of their videos on their regular Instagram stories. It also posts the first minute of videos uploaded on the platform to the channel’s linked Instagram profile.
WHY THE INCLUSION OF IGTV FORMAT IN BUSINESS PROMOTION STRATEGY IS IMPORTANT
1. Increased Visibility and Interaction
IGTV offers businesses increased user visibility and interaction. Given the rapidly increasing number of active IGTV users, businesses are encouraged to consolidate on their regular Instagram following to build their IGTV presence.
The most fundamental step for businesses in this regard is to focus on creating more informal and interactive promotional content that would be fully available only on IGTV. In the process, businesses must also ensure that their videos’ opening parts are catchy and inciting enough, especially the first half-minute. As stated earlier, the first fifteen seconds and minute can be posted on the businesses’ regular Instagram stories and feeds respectively as a teaser. The end result is additional traffic and greater brand awareness, especially when location tags and the right hashtags are used, and when links to the businesses’ websites are made available in the captions.
2. Opportunity for Streamlined, Effective Promotion
When businesses create IGTV content and engage with their audience over a period of time, there is an opportunity for these businesses to assess the effectiveness of their promotion strategies from their analytics. This assessment enables businesses to know what should be leveraged on, what should be altered and what should be scrapped entirely.
For greater context, IGTV’s post analytics has a feature that shows the average length to which users held up. Businesses, as channel owners, which upload videos that are six minutes long on average, might observe that most viewers exit their content halfway. Armed with this information, businesses can restrategize ways of passing across the essence of their messages within a shorter time frame, which would likely guarantee more engagement.
3. Reduced Advertising Cost
When viewed in line with conventional advertising practices, a business’s inclusion of IGTV in its promotional strategy is disruptive. It is relatively cheaper than traditional advertising media, like television and radio advertisements, billboard placements, and features on multiple websites. With a smartphone and a strong internet connection, a business is up and running on IGTV.
4. Younger Demographic Appeal
This is a no-brainer, but it is, in fact, something conservative businesses and brands can easily ignore. At the same time, it is virtually atrocious not to key into a platform widely accessed and used by the younger population. IGTV, like virtually every other social network, has a global reach. Many countries have a teeming population. Thus, businesses must strive to take advantage of this and connect with their younger audience.
5. Imminent Remuneration Scheme
While this development is not entirely shocking, given that its biggest competitors have practiced a similar scheme for years, plans are currently taking shape for content creators on IGTV to earn money from their posts.
It is highly likely that the payment scheme would be based on ad revenue. Notwithstanding the fact that the yields might not be so encouraging in the short term, it offers a win-win situation for businesses in the long term such that they could earn both from the platform and through the platform. This is a solid reason why businesses should include getting a solid footing on IGTV.
IGTV’s growth in popularity is yet another testament to the fact that business promotion is becoming radically different from what it has been and how it has been understood for many years. If indeed businesses ever had a choice to be selective about the platforms on which to showcase their brands, that choice has ceased to exist.