IGTV for businesses

5 Reasons Your Business Should Use IGTV in 2020

IGTV for businesses

On June 20th, 2018, Instagram launched IGTV, its long-form video platform. Available on the original Instagram app as well as its own standalone app, IGTV was ambitiously called “the next generation’s TV” and was expected to compete with YouTube for mobile user’s attention.

Fast forward almost two years later, and IGTV has not made the giant waves it set out to make–however, that doesn’t mean it hasn’t made a sizable splash.

If you’re a marketer or business owner wondering if it’s still worth it to download the IGTV app in 2020, it depends. We aren’t going to beat around the bush–it’s not for every type of business, but you should definitely consider it if:

  • You already receive a lot of engagement on your Instagram Stories
  • You’re interested in influencer marketing
  • You are a B2C brand that sells products that are visually appealing or easy to show off, like clothing, food, or a fitness class
  • You want to reach a Gen Z and Millennial audience

If you think IGTV might be a good fit for you, here are 5 ways your business can benefit from Instagram’s long-form video platform in 2020 and beyond.

1. No Money & No Equipment Necessary

Perhaps the biggest advantage of IGTV for small businesses is its low barrier to entry. All you really need is a smartphone with a decent camera.

Yes, researching your audience and coming up with engaging content takes time–no one is downplaying that! But posting a few IGTV videos over the course of a month and seeing what happens

2. The Future of Video is Mobile

According to Cisco’s Annual Internet Report, video is expected to make up 82% of internet traffic by 2021. And year after year, a greater percentage of those video plays are on mobile devices.

There’s no denying that the future is mobile, and so businesses need to stop seeing phones as a second screen and start taking a mobile-first approach to video content.

IGTV provides a great way for businesses to test out mobile video strategies and get used to creating more smartphone-friendly content. While IGTV has added support for horizontal videos, it’s intended to be a vertical video environment similar to Snapchat or TikTok. And odds are, the next big video-sharing app will be vertical, too, so you may as well get used to it now.

3. It’s an Easy Way to Expand Your Reach

You don’t have to create new content for IGTV to benefit from it–you can re-upload content from your brand’s YouTube or Facebook page to IGTV to gain additional viewership.

Any original content you create for IGTV can be cross-promoted on Twitter, an email newsletter, or whatever other marketing platform you use.

And thanks to a February 2019 update, you can also share a 1-minute preview of your IGTV videos on your feed. From there, viewers can tap “Keep Watching” to go to the full video, allowing you to reach an audience that would never watch IGTV videos otherwise.

4. IGTV Viewers are More Engaged

People scroll past Facebook videos and play YouTube videos in the background while they do something else all the time, but IGTV watchers are a much more engaged audience.

It’s true that only a small percentage of Instagram users have downloaded the separate IGTV app, but that smaller audience is highly interested and hungry for content.

Bottom line? You might get a higher view count on YouTube, but you’ll probably get more likes, comments, and shares on Instagram.

5. Promote Your Brand to Gen Z and Millennials

The millennial generation is in their prime spending years, and is estimated to spend around $1.4 trillion (yes, trillion with a “T”) in 2020.

Gen Z isn’t just a bunch of teenagers without income anymore, either. This up and coming generation is expected to spend roughly $140 billion in 2020, which is nothing to sneeze at!

How do you court these generations? By fishing where the fish are, so to speak. More than half of Instagram users are under the age of 34, so it’s safe to assume that IGTV’s audience has a similar demographic makeup, if not younger.

Tips for Getting the Most out of IGTV for Businesses

Be consistent! Series are the most popular videos on IGTV. Whether you update that series every week or every month, it helps to give your audience something to look forward to regularly. Your series can be as simple as a monthly how-to video, interview, or success story, but don’t be afraid to push boundaries and get creative!

  • A Professional Touch Helps. Yes, one of IGTV’s most appealing features is it’s low barrier to entry, but a professional touch can go a long way. If your business already has a strong presence on Instagram and you want to make a good first impression with them on IGTV, partnering with a local video production company will give you content that extra polish.
  • Include a Call to Action. Always make sure viewers have somewhere to go after they watch your videos by including a strong call to action. IGTV makes that easier by allowing you to include links to products in your video descriptions (something you can’t do on a normal Instagram post).
  • Keep Silent Viewers in Mind. That is, the growing number of people who prefer to watch mobile videos without sound. Consider optimizing your IGTV videos for soundless viewing by adding subtitles that are clear and easy to read.

The Takeaway

  • IGTV is a great video marketing platform for brands with a low barrier to entry.
  • If you don’t already have a strong presence on Instagram or receive a lot of engagement, you may have trouble getting traction with IGTV.
  • As smartphones continue to take over the world, learning how to create great mobile-friendly, vertical video content will give you a competitive edge when the next big mobile video platform comes along.
  • Take IGTV for a test drive before you go all out. Create 2 to 4 videos and analyze the results.
  • IGTV is not a “must-have” in your digital marketing toolkit, but it’s worth considering, especially if your business is B2C.

Have questions about setting up IGTV or creating killer mobile video content? Reach out to us!

How to Create Successful Holiday Social Media Posts

how to create successful holiday social media posts

The holidays can be a stressful time. Between shopping, traffic, and family drama, there is very little bandwidth left to plan, create, and post holiday content that’s witty and engaging - that’s why it’s so crucial to plan ahead. 

The sooner the better, but you should at least have your content scheduled before Thanksgiving. Because once turkey day comes and goes, it’s a landslide into the December holidays.

In this blog, you’ll find tips for planning and creating holiday social media posts that generate buzz and boost your brand.

Examples of Successful Holiday Social Media Campaigns

Remember those “Elf Yourself” videos that went viral a few years ago? Office Depot’s interactive app has been downloaded more than 92 million times, and the company doesn’t have to create a single one of these videos. The Office Depot brand isn’t as easily shareable compared with something like Starbucks, but with a fun idea, anything is possible. If you’re worried that your product or service isn’t “exciting” enough, use Office Depot as inspiration to think outside the box! 

The Giving Machine is another classic feel-good holiday idea. Someone approaches the vending machine and instead of buying something for themselves, chooses to give items like shoes or books to those in need. 

The promotional video doesn’t feel like an ad, making it the perfect example of a highly shareable holiday video. Your company may not have the budget for your own Giving Machine, but a local production company can help you create a polished video that your followers will want to share.

4 Easy Holiday Social Media Post Ideas

Here are a few ideas for companies that companies of all sizes and budgets can use to engage with their followers during the most wonderful time of the year.

1. Host a Giveaway

The old saying “you have to give to get” rings true in the world of social media. Retail stores are offering BOGO’s and gifts with purchases all season long, so why not host a holiday giveaway on your social accounts? 

A simple and popular way to host a giveaway is to have your followers like, share, or tag a friend on your post. This strategy is an easy way to gain followers and boost engagement.

2. Run a Branded Contest

Another way to host a giveaway is to have your followers create content to enter a contest. This helps a social media manager tremendously not only in terms of having usable content they don’t need to create but also because user-generated content is a very high-performing type of free advertising. 

3. Spread a Little Good Will 

Is your business involved in a charitable cause? Now’s the perfect time to highlight that in your social posts. Promoting your values is an easy way to build trust with your audience while giving back to the community. 

4. Be Yourself 

You don’t always have to be promoting something - sometimes, the most effective branded social content has nothing to do with your brand. Posting your employees’ favorite recipes or holiday crafts adds a human element to your social media marketing that your followers can connect with. 

How to Plan & Implement Your Campaign

Ideas are great, but you’re going to need a solid strategy to bring your holiday social media posts to life. Follow these steps to get your campaign rolling: 

Step 1: Do Your Homework

Conduct industry-relevant research before adding holiday posts to your content calendar. Pick a few competitors to investigate and scan their previous holiday posts. Then, ask yourself a few questions:

  • What type of messaging were they using? (Was it sentimental? Funny? Look at what worked and what didn’t)
  • What type of content were they posting? (Videos, images, content from users? See what resonated and what didn’t)
  • What can you create that your audience hasn’t seen before? (The holidays are the time to get creative and test unconventional content) 

Step 2: Pick Products or Services You Want to Highlight

When planning content, whether it’s a photo, video, or blog post, there are a few things to consider regarding your products and services.

  • Is there a product or service you offer that would make a great gift?
  • Is there a popular item you would like to promote with a special holiday deal? 

Along these lines, you might want to consider creating a unique landing page showcasing your holiday promotions on your website - you can link to it on all of your social media bios and holiday posts! 

taking photo of christmas decor on smart phone

Step 3: Get Creative

And now the fun part - the creative! 

Use the holiday post ideas above to create sentimental stories and videos, and to encourage user-generated content. According to Psychology Today, consumers are 39 percent more likely to share your content if it’s shown in a video format. It’s also 56 percent more likely to receive a “like” and 36 percent more likely to be commented on.

Tip: appeal to emotions, not just wallets. As consumers, we’re bombarded with aggressive ads to purchase things during the holidays, and you don’t want to present your company to your audience in that manner. Appeal to their emotions and interests, as opposed to sounding like an infomercial. 

One final thing - it almost goes without saying, but whatever content you choose to create should be high quality. If you can not produce this type of content yourself, that’s where a production agency comes in. At Slice, we specialize in creating engaging photo and video content for your brand - contact us today to learn how.


Step 4: Add The (Jingle) Bells and Whistles

Think about incorporating a hashtag or tagline into your campaign idea. A hashtag is an easy way for people to piggyback off a campaign and post their own content. 

In addition to creating a unique hashtag, you can improve your reach by adding some of the most popular holiday hashtags to your posts - so when people want to #shoplocalthischristmas or find a #christmasgiveaway, they’ll know exactly where to find you!

Step 5: Create a Content Calendar

A content calendar is an easy way to organize your social posts year-round. Here are some tips to keep yours organized and up to date this holiday season:

  • For some people, Christmas starts the day after Halloween - try to start your holiday campaign ASAP! 
  • What channels and what aspects of those channels are you posting on? For example, don’t just jot down “Instagram” - make sure you specify whether you’ll be using posts, stories, IGTV, or all three.
  • How often are you posting on each platform, and what is the best time to post? 
  • What hashtags are you going to use? Including these in your content calendar helps give you a big-picture view of your campaign.

If you don’t already have a social content calendar in place, check out these content and tracking calendars to help you save time. 

Step 6: Schedule & Post!

Once you have your calendar ready, it’s time to import your content into a system that will post for you. That way, you can focus on other holiday happenings! Some popular scheduled posting services include Buffer, Hootsuite, and Latergramme. 

Feeling inspired by the ideas above? Get the high-quality photo and video content you need for your holiday social media posts from a professional production and post-production company in Tampa, FL. Give us a call at 727-267-0650 or email william@slice.company to see how we can help you create some holiday magic on your social channels!