Not sure if this means IGTV is going really good or really bad. Either way, Instagram is testing a new option that will highlight IGTV channels in the main Instagram feed, helping to boost awareness of the option and get more users clicking across.
Spotted by social media analyst Jane Manchun Wong (and shared by Matt Navarra), the new panel, if you happen to come across it, will appear below your Instagram Stories bar, and above the first image in your feed.
That’s fairly significant placement for the option – up till now, IGTV has been kept behind the new TV icon at the top of the screen, or within the separate IGTV app. This new test will enable Instagram to promote IGTV to its billion plus users, boosting its exposure and usage.
Really, it may not say much about the performance of the month-old IGTV at all – it makes perfect sense for Instagram to utilize its main app to promote the new offering. Over time, Instagram could learn which users are actually clicking over to IGTV, and only show the IGTV panel to them, or to people who match a similar profile, avoiding interruption for those who don’t care.
And definitely, you would expect that this promotion of IGTV will result in more usage. While those who are highly active on social, or stay up to date on the latest trends, are aware of IGTV and what’s on offer, many people won’t be as familiar, and may not even have considered what that orange TV icon is.
It could also help to encourage creators to be more active on IGTV – if IGTV is promoted more heavily, that means their content will also be promoted to a wider audience, boosting view counts and encouraging more usage. Of course, the next step then is monetization, which Instagram is working on, but the first pillar is building an audience, so maximizing their opportunities – especially if those matches are targeted based on past user behavior – will likely prove beneficial.
There’s still a way to go on IGTV, but with Instagram growing and growing, there’s definitely a lot of potential. For brands, it’s worth considering how IGTV might fit into your overall strategy – even if you don’t get a heap of traction early, this test shows that Instagram will be working to push the option, it is likely to become more significant over time.
Getting in now, and learning the ins and outs, could prove highly beneficial as adoption builds.