Instagram has officially announced its intention of becoming a video platform that lies somewhere between Snapchat and Youtube. The video app and hub will be known as IGTV (Instagram TV) and will support long-form vertical videos.
The video platform will come in two forms: a standalone app in stores and as a section of the IG app. Unlike the current conditions where regular videos run for 60 seconds and stories span 30 seconds, IGTV will support longer and full-screen vertical videos that run for as long as an hour. The app is already up and running and anyone can start uploading their videos.
Why long form vertical videos?
For marketing brands, short stories limit them on how much they can cover. A longer concept had to be broken down into smaller portions and posted differently making everything unnecessarily complicated. Mignoni, Bacardi’s director of creative excellence admits that there is a need for both long and short form videos as they allow marketers to choose what works best for various narratives.
Snapchat has had unprecedented success with its long-form vertical videos, and it appears every celebrity wants to try it out. Maroon 5, Nav, Lil Uzi Vert, Taylor Swift and many other celebrities are resorting to vertical videos. This shows just how viral the vertical format has gone. If you check the screenshot below, you’ll realize that most of those videos are merely a few months old.
Instagram is capitalizing on its heavy user base to launch an assault against Snapchat as well as compete for Youtube’s massive population. Although the app is targeting celebrities and video bloggers, anyone can post videos via their channels- similar to Youtube.
The million dollar question is, will Instagram users watch videos that are longer than they are traditionally used to? Well, it’s been reported that Instagram is advising video makers to stick to videos that play for around 8 to 10 minutes. This will make the platform different from traditional TV fare and more like Youtube.
Currently, Snapchat’s 1-2 minutes videos receive roughly 20-30 million views per month. If Instagram TV gets something closer to that, then it might become the top platform for uploading and watching vertical videos.
Regular videos do not shine much on Instagram and Facebook
According to Eric Lam, the CEO of Revfluence-an influencer marketing platform, IGTV is not a radical invention but rather a more natural evolution that sticks to the needs of the users. He went on to say that “people use Facebook for a variety of reasons and not to watch long videos. Introducing such a feature won’t be a natural fit on such social platforms.”
Revfluence research also pointed out that the performance of regular videos (not stories) on Instagram was dimming. The total posts with these videos only makes up for 4% of all branded IG posts.
Vertically oriented videos (mostly stories), on the other hand, continue to witness a steady level of growth. Therefore, it makes sense for Instagram to want to offer more of these videos rather than the conventional horizontal or square formats.
How Instagram TV can transform Business
IGTV will give businesses a chance to express themselves in detail regarding the launch of a new product or service. E-commerce stores, beauty parlors and other companies will be able to create tutorials showing customers how to use a particular product. This will make them an authority in their niche leading to a good bottom line.
Having said all that, we can all agree that Instagram’s IGTV, being an open platform, has the power to tap into the revenue that has been going to YouTube. However, it could be extremely hard for it to outshine Youtube as this platform is home to almost every media.
Do you think Instagram’s IGTV can outshine Youtube? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below.
6 Surefire Ways to Grow Your Email Subscribers List Using Social Media
Unless your visitors are utterly enchanted with your content, it usually proves to be quite hard to keep a steady influx of email subscribers list. Asking those that land on your site to subscribe as soon as they’re there also makes almost no impact, it’s just too aggressive. So, what do you really require in order to get going?
You need to nearly invisibly integrate your email subscription request into the one thing that the majority of internet users spend most of their time on – social networks. The procedure itself may sound arduous and complicated, but most of the actual strategies are in fact quite simple and easy to execute.
Place social network buttons in your emails
At first, this may seem like a regressive strategy, and yet it’s the best thing you can do to boost your email list. So let’s say your email contains Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest buttons that will take those who click them to your social page.
The ones that already are your subscribers are probably delighted with your posts, and they won’t be too shy to share them. This doesn’t only increase the traffic you get, it also means that the like-minded friends of your subscribers who trust their taste will click the link that they shared and probably subscribe as well.
Those friends will share with their friends, and if you’re lucky enough, you can enter the unstoppable loop of success.
Gate your best content
The ‘gate’ in this case represents the barrier between your new readers and the finest posts your site has to offer. If they’re already hooked on whatever you’re addressing, or even just curious, they’ll be on your email list in no time.
The content you ‘gated’ will be overlaid with a message saying that the visitors have to subscribe using their email address before they can proceed with reading. Everyone that enjoys your top content will feel rewarded for providing their email once the new post notifications start rushing in.
Offer rewards for subscribing
Another way to grow your email subscribers list is to create premium content that encompasses the ideas that your site or blog elaborates on, or guide your readers through a specific subject, then advertise it as a free subscription reward. It will do the trick, as long as the eBook can’t otherwise be accessed.
You can take this strategy a step further and upload new premium content every month, which will automatically get sent to your current subscribers. Not only will they be eager to expect another one, they will be hooked on one of the best ways of obtaining traffic.
Add a call-to-action (CTA) to every social network profile
This method doesn’t take much more than an introductory 3-liner and a quick link to your site/blog, but it does wonders to your traffic. If your call to action also has proper SEO, meaning that it contains the keywords that best describe your content, you will be much easier to find by those looking for you or seeking anything you can provide.
You take this strategy to a whole new level and create landing pages for each of the links separately, which will address in detail whatever it is you emphasised on in your short description.
Add sign-up links to your social network profiles
Interweave the constant content link sharing on social networks with short and quick reminders for all followers and fans that they can get notified by email if they click the link. Being up to date with your content is relatively easy, depending on how much you actually share on social networks and how clever you are at doing it, but email notifications are still way more official.
With proper wording in the same style as your content, even the most persistent non-subscribers will eventually change their mind you will achieve your goal to grow your email subscribers list. Make sure that you point out just how conveniently they will be able to keep up with your posts if only they click that subscribe link.
Create YouTube tutorials and advertise in your videos
YouTube is the second largest search engine, and the first is owned by the same company. Google loves a good SEO plan, and that means more visitors and more subscribers. Pick any matter you address on your blog, make the title how to + something your target audience would search to locate the video.
After you connect your website to your YouTube account, you can add another subscription option to your channel, which will offer the sign-up button right at the end of the educational video.
Did social media giant, Facebook copy Snapchat? As it seems Facebook is becoming a little envious? Over the past four years, it appears that Mark Zuckerberg’s main business tactic has been to copy the best ideas from all of his competitors. The most successful of these being Instagram stories which launched in August of 2016. To date, Facebook has attempted to copy Snapchat features more than 15 times.
What is Facebook up to this time?
The latest development in this saga is Facebook’s release of its new camera filters and stories feature. Released on Tuesday, 28 March, these new features will afford Facebook users the opportunity to share photos and videos with cool new frames, masks, and filters and share them with their family and friends.
Additionally, Facebook users will be able to create their own stories, as with Instagram and Snapchat. These stories can consist of photos or videos that will appear at the top of your news feed and ultimately disappear after 24 hours, just like Snapchat. After experimenting with the feature on both Instagram and WhatsApp, stories are now available on the largest social network in the world.
Why Facebook has introduced new features
Product Manager at Facebook, Connor Hayes, explains that they want to make sharing creative photos and videos with friends and family, fast, fun and easy as well as to share them for however long they choose. He further explains that the more content users share, the more open and connected the community becomes.
The new filters can transform you into a wide array of characters from Wonder Woman to one of the Power Rangers, letting you create endless goofy pictures to share with your Facebook friends.
The Snapchat Stories feature was released in 2013 and follows the same premise- you can apply fun and quirky filters, share them with your friends and family and let them disappear from the internet community after 24 hours. Instagram released its version of stories last year to its 150 million users. This amazing application is gaining popularity among many users throughout the world.
Snapchat CEO, Evan Spiegel has refrained from commenting on the situation. However, his fiancé, Miranda Kerr has expressed her disapproval on the matter in an interview with The Times asking why they cannot be innovative on their own, and stated that copying someone else’s ideas is in no sense being innovative.
In defense of Facebook, Hayes said in a statement that the stories feature was really pioneered by Snapchat. He continues to explain that Facebook’s take on Stories was to provide a way for people to share and view photos and videos across all their social apps.
Has Facebook copied Snapchat?
Hayes continues to explain that for the last 10 years the Facebook interface has been very focused in the text element as well as the changing way that people create the content and share it. Hayes concludes by explaining that Facebook is trying to upgrade the app to cater for this change in behavior.
Despite ‘borrowing’ Snapchat’s idea, Facebook still has a number of creases to iron out for a seamless feature across all their apps. At present, Facebook stories only allow users to respond to friend’s stories within the stories feature and not in Messenger, which also has its own stories feature called Messenger Day.
Facebook now has almost identical stories features across all four of its major social media platforms, although users are not able to cross-post their stories between Facebook-owned apps. After all it is obvious that Facebook copied Snapchat.
Try it for yourself
Open your Facebook app and take a look at these new features and decide for yourself whether you like it or not. Or do you prefer the good old original Snapchat? Regardless of where your preference lies, Facebook will continue to upgrade in an attempt to be on top, whether it is based on their originality or Snapchat’s genius ideas.
Since we’re all familiar and comfortable with Google’s immaculate quality standard, we’re always anxious to try out its next product. This time, that product just so happens to be THE product for every website owner out there! No matter who you are and what you do, if you’re in any way involved in the website industry, you must know what Google Optimize 360 and Google Analytics are. Google Optimize puts those two in one, free of charge!
Although one might say this tactic is used to stimulate the purchase of Google Optimize 360, one doesn’t really need to, next to all the features that Google Optimize offers. Out of everything you can find on the internet, websites are the single most important pillar of the web world, and Google has finally released their most important and finest tool yet.
We’ve been waiting for something like this ever since the first traffic-generating website was made, and even though it took a long time, we don’t mind. We are all simply exalted that we can now live in the future fuelled by free and amazing tools that can help us achieve our dreams. With Google Optimize, this has never been more possible than now.
What Makes Google Optimize Revolutionary
The reason why this isn’t another great Google tool, but instead THE tool is because it puts hours upon hours of hard work and cash draining into minutes of free testing and optimisation. Every website owner constantly aims to find better ways to improve the number of visitors and thus their revenue, but this is often tedious business.
There are so many factors involved, a lot of which tend to be overlooked by those seeking to optimise them and even by the optimisation tools. This is why it’s generally hard to make the right decision when trying to bring a positive change to your website. Google Optimize perfects this endeavour by fusing the most useful analytic and site editing software to date.
Every website owner uses Google Analytics to constantly monitor how their ideas are working out and see in what sphere their website could improve, but people are not computers that can fully calculate this. Thankfully, we now have Google Optimize, which does all the dirty work in no time and allows for perfect transitions once changes are made on a website. Most optimisation software doesn’t incorporate Google Analytics’ statistics into its calculations, but Google Optimize was built on top of it.
What Makes You Revolutionary
Every product that Google releases isn’t made for its glory, but yours. What makes Google Optimize so incredibly good is the wide range of possibilities that it offers you, such as:
1. Single source
Whereas most website optimisation tools rely on various sources of information that help it offer you the best possible service, Google Optimize uses only Google Analytics in order to bypass any confusion or bad data.
It’s safe to say that Google Analytics is the only thing you need to track all the statistics of your website, and now there’s a tool that relies on it solely like you do. This ensures the pinpoint accuracy of Google Optimize suggestions and relieves the user of any potential errors that may take more money than they give.
2. Easy testing
Testing your website using Google Optimize takes a few minutes while doing that in any other way takes hours and a lot of money. You need your techies to create and upload the various variations only to be tested out, but Google Optimise shows them to you right away. If you are satisfied with how your optimised website looks, it can officially look like that to every visitor within another few minutes instead of hours or even days.
Bask in the Future
Google has had a reputation for quite a while as a company that constantly seeks to increase our life quality. It’s safe to say that Google Optimize is the epitome of that idea because, for the first time in forever, we can now actually edit a website as we would a simple video.
Looking back at 2016, I am sure that 2017 will be very eventful for social media marketers. Here are my top predictions and social media trends that businesses should keep an eye on in 2017:
Live Video & Video content to take a key position in marketing strategies
Live video literally blew everyone away in 2016, and it doesn’t look like it will be slowing down any time soon. As of today, almost all major social networks offer live video and people are loving it.
All social networks are constantly working on ways to push live video and video posts on people’s Newsfeeds, and they also work on expanding the opportunities for advertisers. Many brands found ways to incorporate video in their social media strategy and this is the one trend that for sure we will see growing more and more in 2017.
Snapchat to continue setting the trend
With over 300 million monthly active users this young network is setting the trend in the industry.
Snapchat is the social network that knows their users and gives them exactly what they need and dream of. In 2017 Snapchat is expected to make its network more business-friendly and open advertising opportunities for smaller businesses as well. This is the network that every marketer should keep an eye on in 2017.
Facebook organic reach to continue to drop, while Facebook ads will start getting pricey
Organic reach on Facebook has been dropping year on year, and it looks like it will continue. To compensate for the drop in organic reach, tons of marketer invest more and more in paid reach. The more marketers invest in Facebook ads, the more organic reach will keep dropping.
And since competition between Facebook advertisers is growing, at one point very soon we will start seeing an increase in the cost per results and conversion rates. In 2017, marketers should take into consideration these particular trends and adapt their budgets accordingly to the goals they want to achieve.
Instagram to offer more opportunities for advertisers in 2017
Instagram underwent some big changes in their NewsFeed algorithm in 2016. Now that organic reach on Instagram has dropped, brands are going to have to put their hands in their pockets and pay for more advertising. And if brands will be willing to spend more on Instagram advertising, then for sure Instagram will come up with more advertising opportunities for marketers in 2017!