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Beyond posting the usual photos and videos, Instagram has added Stories and Instagram TV (IGTV). Both additions take different approaches to Instagram’s visual content. Stories allow people to share short-form content, which is viewable for a limited time, and IGTV centres around longer-form video content. Tech Crunch has credited Stories for Instagram’s usage time increasing from 24 minutes to 32 minutes per day, in the year after its release. Meanwhile, IGTV has had a slower start than Stories, but since Instagram has made some improvements to IGTV, it’s growing. Let’s have a look at each Instagram extension and why you should be using them.

Instagram Stories:

Instagram stories, as we just touched on, are like Instagram posts for a limited-time-only. Stories can be pictures or videos, and can be a maximum of 15 seconds long. You can split the videos into 15 seconds using external apps, and upload them one after another, but the default setting is 15 seconds. Also, Stories expire after 24 hours. Once this time is up, they’re no longer viewable. So, why use Instagram Stories?

Reasons Your Business Should Use Instagram Stories:

1 – Stories Drive Engagement and Gather Public Opinion

Instagram Stories, despite their temporary nature, have a range of tools for driving engagements. When you upload content to Stories, you can place stickers and decorations for the audience to interact with. You can ask questions, upload polls, use emoji slider stickers, and more. These stickers not only get people interacting with your brand, but they can also be used to gather public opinion. For example, you can ask customers about products they’d like to see. Customer opinion can help you guide future product decisions or innovations. Stories are also great for getting people talking to your brand. Tech Crunch reported that one in five viewers of a business’s Story directly messages the business. Overall, Stories provide a platform for engaging two-way communication.

2 – More Ways To Reach Your Audience

Much like regular Instagram posts, Stories can help a business grow its audience by using hashtags and location tags. Adding hashtags to you Stories allows your brand to reach anyone searching for that hashtag. You can have up to 10 hashtags in a story, and one clickable hashtag sticker. Also, when you post your story, you can tag the location. Tagging the location will allow you to reach people who search for businesses in a certain area. It’s like an extra hashtag, but for a location. Using these tags will help you reach more potential audiences. 

3 – Stories Build A More Genuine Connection

Instagram Stories’ more casual nature, and its engagement tools, make brands more human to interact with. Stories are often used for spur of the moment content, like behind the scenes, which lets customers see the human side of a brand. Plus, the engagement tools, mentioned above, get customers talking to a brand. By being more authentic and human, people will think more positively about a brand. So, having Stories is a great way to connect with an audience. 

4 – You Can Place Ads In Stories

One of the benefits of using Stories on Instagram is the ability to get people seeing your ads. Whether you’re promoting an organic Story or making an ad specifically for Stories, you can place ads in Instagram Stories. Story Ads appear between Instagram Stories, so people will be able to see your ads while they browse stories. So, uploading organic Stories, while running Story ads, gives you a high chance of being seen by the audience. 

5 – Nearly Anything Can Be Story Content

Instagram Stories are an easy way to engage your audience because it takes less effort to create. Stories are in the moment content, such as something currently happening behind the scenes. So, making Stories is a simple as point, shoot, add stickers, and post. The more your posting, the better chance you will have to engage your audience. Overall, the simplicity of Instagram Stories can help your brand reach your audience. 

Instagram TV:

Unlike Stories, IGTV focuses on longer-form video content. IGTV videos can be be viewed in the regular Instagram app or the dedicated IGTV app. IGTV videos are between 15 seconds and 10 minutes in length but can be an hour for larger, verified accounts. Also, unlike Stories, IGTV videos don’t expire and offer the options of vertical or horizontal video. Stories, on the other hand, are optimised for vertical content. You can also create a series for people to follow, on IGTV, just like a regular television show. So, why use IGTV?

Reasons Your Business Should Use IGTV:

1 – Video content is the way of the future

IGTV will keep your brand relevant, moving into the future, because the consumption of video content on mobile is increasing. Mobile video viewership is expected to account for 78% of mobile data usage, by 2021. Plus, as we discussed in a recent blog, 54% of people want more video content from brands. People want more video content, and you can give it to them on IGTV.

2 – Build Trust

By using IGTV videos, such as question and answer videos, behind the scenes, and ask me anything videos, your brand can build trust with your viewers. These types of content make your brand look open and transparent, which gives a human element to your brand. Connecting with your viewers on a human level leads to more consumer trust in your brand. So, IGTV can increase consumer trust in your brand.

3 – You Can Showcase Your Product

Whether you use tutorial videos or product placement, IGTV lets you show off your product. Thanks to the longer-form content, IGTV lets you get creative with showcasing your products. You can make tutorials that feature your product’s uses, such as recipes. Consumers are 85% more likely to purchase after seeing a product video. Alternatively, you can place your products in your IGTV series. However you do it, IGTV can be used to showcase your product. 

4 – More Time Allows For More Creativity

By having more time than regular Instagram posts or Stories, you can experiment more with content formats and lengths. With more time, there are several ways you can use your IGTV account: question and answer videos, tutorial videos, etc. For example, for a food product, you could create a cooking show without splitting it up over multiple Stories. IGTV gives you the freedom to experiment with video formats. Also, you can use analytics to see what works. Try different video lengths and see what performs best on analytics. Don’t make something longer than it needs to be, or shorter than it should be. Overall, you can use the extra time to be more creative

5 – IGTV Videos Get Seen More On The Explore Page

IGTV videos will help your brand get exposure by taking up more reservation on Instagram’s explore page. The Explore page is covered in thumbnails of content curated by Instagram, for the user. IGTV thumbnails are four times larger than normal posts on the Explore page. Thus, using IGTV is more likely to get your seen.

I Don’t Have Experience With Video Content Creation:

You may be daunted by the idea of producing video content for Instagram Stories and IGTV. However, smartphone camera’s are up to the task, and there are plenty of smartphone apps that make video editing simple. Download one you like, cut the pieces of the video you want to keep and add any stylisation you want.

Alternatively, if you want professional video production, you can always outsource. By outsourcing, you can let a video professional create a high-production quality ad for you. However, a lot of business owners are worried about not getting results, and how they’ll appear on camera. At SBIM, we’ve developed a proven video framework and our in-house video expert will guide you through our fun process to ensure you look amazing. To get more from your social media marketing and videos, contact SBIM today on 07 3325 0505 or at