If a picture is worth a thousand words, how many is a video worth?
But, why is this?
Videos feel more real than other forms of media, which makes them the ultimate tool for telling your business’ story. Uploading videos to your socials allows prospective clients to get to know you, and fast. People appreciate honesty. Everyone loves the thrill of casting their eyes over some behind-the-scenes content. Video marketing, particularly on Instagram, allows you to give prospective clients this insight.
Yes, videos may seem like hard work compared to a still image. But let me tell you, a little bit of extra effort pays off. With apps like Instagram, you have so many different video options. Instagram Stories, for example, are quick and casual, off the cuff. No need for bulky camera equipment now we have smartphones. It couldn’t be easier to engage with your audience and make memorable content.
In this article, we will take you through your Instagram video marketing possibilities. From Instagram Live to IGTV, this is the definitive guide to getting your business moving. We’ve included some quick-fire information about each type of video, as well as how-to guides and original content ideas.
It’s time to tell your story through video.
Length: Between 3 seconds and 1 minute.
Longevity: Will stay on your profile’s feed permanently.
Standard feed videos are one of Instagram’s earlier features. They’re the most versatile tool we will discuss in this article – anything goes!
Look at them as a chance to showcase your business in 60 seconds. This could be anything from a tutorial to an advert created for your website. Or, what about a video showing the benefits of your service? Feed videos should grab the attention of your prospective clients and make them stop scrolling to watch. Therefore, make sure the first few seconds are especially eye-catching and intriguing.
To upload a video to your feed, click on the + button at the bottom of the Instagram home screen. You then have two options. Either;
- Upload a video straight from your phone’s library,
- Or record footage from within the app by clicking on the ‘video’ option.
Using the app to record footage means your video will be square. Most people opt to import footage from their own library for increased flexibility. You can then edit the footage and add a filter if you please. Also, make sure to pick a great cover photo for your video. This is what will show up on your feed, so make it something aesthetically pleasing which sums up the post.
And voilà! Your video will show on follower’s feeds and will stay on your profile forever. Give your followers a reason to stop scrolling and learn more about your business.
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Length: Up to 15 seconds per story. Longer videos will be chopped up into 15 second snippets.
Longevity: Only accessible for 24 hours, unless you use the ‘Highlights’ feature.
Instagram Stories was first introduced in August 2016 and quickly became a huge deal.
The feature allows users to upload short clips to their ‘story’ which are visible for 24 hours. They’re easy to create in-app, so feel more casual than feed videos. You should reflect this in the content you put on your business’ story.
Think of them as a chance to capture the everyday activities going-on in your business. They are great for sharing behind the scenes content; setting up for a special event or staff having a bit of fun in the office. You could even upload a video of your team celebrating a business achievement! In general, keep it casual, keep it light, and most importantly – make sure it’s on brand.
Stories also have so many features that help you engage with prospective clients. To name a few;
- Add your location. This allows users to find your story if they search that location, increasing your discoverability.
- Give your followers the option to ask you a question. Encourage followers to think carefully about your business. You can respond to the questions through your Story and put a human face to your business.
- Add a poll. Ask your followers what they want to see from your business. This will make prospective clients feel like you value their opinion.
- Link to a URL. Once you have over 10 thousand followers, you can even get followers to ‘swipe up’ and follow a URL. This gives you the option to take followers straight to your website.
To add to your story, click the ‘Your story’ button in the top left corner of the Instagram home page. From there, take footage by holding down the circular record button. To zoom in and out, just slide your finger up and down the screen. You can also import video from your phone’s library.
Once you have the footage, your options are endless! Add text by tapping your screen and typing. You can easily change the font, colour and size to match your aesthetic. If your business has an artistic edge, add drawings to videos, using your finger to trace out designs. Add locations, polls, hashtags, and countdowns. Press ‘next’ then ‘share’ and your story will be visible for the next 24 hours. Don’t be afraid to add more than one at a time. They will auto-play after one another.
Don’t forget about Story Highlights. This feature allows you to save Stories so they are always visible on your profile. They can be great for giving an overview of what your business has to offer.
Stories are video marketing in its most casual form, so they help followers feel truly connected to you. For even more information, we already have an article dedicated to the benefits of Instagram Stories. Go and have a read!
Length: Up to 60 minutes per live stream.
Longevity: Users can watch live. You also have the option to share it like a Story for 24 hours.
Instagram Live allows you to broadcast live video footage to your followers. This is a great feature for getting your prospective client’s attention. Once you start recording, some followers receive a notification, inviting them to watch. This sort of video marketing shows you have nothing to hide. Interactions with your following are real and completely up-to-date.
There are so many occasions to live stream. If you are hosting a special event or celebration for your business, you could live stream important speeches or information about new services. On a more casual level, ‘Going Live’ is a great format for a Q&A. People watching can send comments that everyone can read. Replying to people’s questions in real time shows you’re honest and know your stuff about your business.
To start a live stream, click the ‘Your Story’ button in the left-top corner of the home screen. This time, swipe across to the left so it reads ‘LIVE’ at the bottom of the screen. Then, simply click ‘Go Live’.
Once you’ve finished the stream, you can replay and share the footage if you choose, much like an Instagram story. They too will disappear after 24 hours.
Length: Between 15 seconds and 10 minutes. Larger accounts can upload videos of up to 60 minutes.
Longevity: A one minute ‘trailer’ version of the video is posted on your feed like a normal feed video.
IGTV is Instagram’s newest video marketing tool. It lets you upload longer videos which can be easily discovered by users not yet following you. When users click on the ‘IGTV’ icon, they are directed to a series of videos related to the content they’ve previously engaged with. These videos play back to back and are easy to comment on or flick through.
This means IGTV gives you the chance to make an impression on new prospective clients. So, make sure you showcase your business. You could promote a new service of yours or upload a related tutorial. Just make sure it’s obvious what your business offers so that users know what they’re watching. It’s easy to adopt content from other channels for IGTV, such as if your business has a YouTube channel. Always remember to alter the videos, making them portrait. This way, they fill a user’s screen and are therefore more engaging.
IGTV also contributes to your feed. Once you have uploaded the video, a minute-long ‘trailer’ version will appear on your profile. Followers will therefore also be able to find the footage on their home feeds. After they have watched the minute of footage, they will be directed to the full version on IGTV.
To upload content to your IGTV, click on the TV icon in the top right corner of your home screen. Then click on the + button, again the top right corner. You can then upload content straight from your library. It’s as easy as that.
As this is a newer form of video marketing, getting on board now means you will be ahead of the wave.
We hope you enjoyed our definitive guide to video marketing on Instagram. You can always refer back to this article for information on any of Instagram’s video features.
Do you know we offer videography as part of our full-service social media services packages? If you do need help creating stunning videos for your social media, then take a look at our ‘Services’ page on our website. We will be waiting to help you.