Since its launch in April 2012, Instagram has steadily established itself as one of the most popular social media platforms. The fact that it is a visual medium encouraging photos and videos over text is one of the main reasons for its popularity. Over the years, Instagram has evolved as per the needs of its users and is one of the most engaging social media platforms today.
In its constant pursuit to come up with something new, the Instagram Television (IGTV) was launched in 2018 to do away with Instagram’s restrictions on video length. Today, the IGTV platform allows brands to share their content on Instagram. That way, videos created in IGTV automatically reach your Instagram followers, thereby increasing its reach.
In recent years, Instagram has improved its investment in IGTV, and newer features are being added to it to improve its effectiveness. Instagram now has a Discover section wherein content from IGTV is directly played based on a user’s past views. Thus the content that you post in the IGTV app can be viewed in the standalone app as well is from Instagram.
It is expected that in the coming years, IGTV will have an even wider reach. This makes it the perfect time for brands to incorporate IGTV as a part of their marketing strategies. The earlier a brand jumps into the IGTV marketing bandwagon, the better headstart it will get in the competitive marketing world. For brands that are keen to introduce IGTV in their digital marketing strategies but are unsure of how to leap, we have formulated a list of 6 tips to help you.
Understand the Platform Norms
Every social media platform has its norms, and what works well in one platform may not click in another. Before you embark on your Instagram marketing journey, you need to familiarize yourself with the rules and standards of IGTV.
For business accounts that have more than 10,000 followers, the IGTV platform allows the broadcast of videos that are up to 60 minutes long. For standard accounts, this limit stands at 10 minutes. Statistically, it is seen that videos that are 3 to 5 minutes long have maximum engagement.
Create a Suitable Thumbnail
The thumbnail of a video helps a user decide whether they want to watch a particular video. Since this is a deciding factor in your video’s popularity, you need to work on creating one that is visually appealing. IGTV allows a user to create a thumbnail while uploading a video. Since there is no provision of editing or uploading a new thumbnail at a later stage, you must be cautious at this step.
As of now, thumbnails for IGTV are vertical and align with the content, but they appear as squares on an Instagram grid. Thus, if you have textual content in the thumbnail and the same is not aligned well, there are chances of it being cropped inappropriately. This is something that you need to keep in mind while designing a thumbnail as a thumbnail designed for YouTube or some other channel may not work well here.
Film the video for IGTV
The IGTV platform is one that is created for mobile viewing, and if you want to strike a chord with your target group, you need to film your video accordingly. Ideally, shoot a video in portrait mode or have it filmed in a way that can be cropped to vertical format.
Having a 16:9 ratio video is an ideal situation as that will take up the entire screen space for the viewer resulting in lesser distractions. You can also use the B-roll to create visually appealing, immersive videos to boost engagement among your viewers.
Make the most of Instagram Stories
Instagram Stories are an excellent platform for you to promote your IGTV content as the two apps are fully integrated. When you create a video for IGTV, try to prepare a short 30 – 45 – second teaser for the same. This can then be broken into three or four 15 second segments, which can then be uploaded in your Instagram stories. The swipe up feature of the Story can directly lead to your IGTV page, thereby increasing the views.
Repurpose your Instagram Live Videos
For many brands, Instagram Live is already an integral part of marketing strategies. As an unscripted and spontaneous medium, this has been effective in capturing the attention of the audience. You can leverage the power of Live videos to boost your IGTV popularity.
Start by screen recording your live session and then going about with it like you normally would. Feel free to invite other broadcasters to join you for a conversation on-camera. Just make sure that their internet connectivity is stable and that there is no audio or video lag from their end.
Realize that poor quality of video When you record your screen, all the comments and reactions that you see are also recorded. This adds an element of uncurated fun to your IGTV videos. If you want, you can also edit your recorded live session before posting it on IGTV.
Encourage Engagement on Your Video
The Instagram algorithm is such that videos with higher likes and comments find their way into the feed of more people. Encourage your viewers to engage with your IGTV video. Unlike Facebook, where there is no Facebook ad template that you need to stick to, and this gives you the creative freedom to ask questions that will prompt viewers to comment and advertise your brand on your behalf.
You can also organize contests and giveaways wherein the person who tags the maximum number of friends or whose comment on your IGTV video gathers maximum likes is rewarded. This type of incentivizing will go a long way in establishing your online digital popularity.
As IGTV is a relatively new platform, it will be fair to except changes in its interface in the days to come. However, the basic rules remain unhindered, and it is for you to explore and find out which cross-promoting tricks work the best for you. As you embark on this journey, here’s wishing you the very best of luck for the same.