Instagram has always been one of the underdogs when it comes to social media. Ever since it was launched, Instagram has grown exponentially, with potentially a billion active users monthly! In fact, Instagram has gunned down SnapChat by beating in its own game! Yes, I’m talking about Instagram Stories, which is a blatant copy of SnapChat’s “Story” concept. And now, Instagram has placed a large bet against YouTube by launching its IGTV app.
YouTube has been the biggest platform for content creators, in all verticals! I mean, the sheer size of YouTube itself cannot be compared to any other video platform. But, why is IGTV a potential threat to YouTube? It all comes down to those one billion plus active users in Instagram!
There are some key things to keep in mind. Unlike YouTube, on IGTV, videos are vertical and not horizontal, so you do not have to tilt your smartphone’s display. The ‘vertical’ video format went mainstream thanks to Snapchat, but Instagram with its 1 billion followers is now clearly dominating this, and plans to go further.
IGTV videos can be an hour long, and are no longer have time limits like regular Stories or users’ video posts. Longer videos means more time spent on Instagram, and from a revenue perspective that’s exactly what any app wants to achieve. For Instagram, the longer video format will mean targeting more premium advertising.Thus, IGTV will perhaps be the biggest threat to YouTube in recent times.
What I feel is that, Instagram is definitely going to challenge YouTube’s influencer community. Yes, you read it right. Almost all the content creators and influencers grew on YouTube, but here is the catch. They now have dedicated Instagram pages with millions of followers. Most have also switched to Insta Stories for more views despite the terrible filters, especially after Snapchat’s disastrous redesign which did not go down well with users and influencers alike.
So for most of these influencers, longer videos in IGTV is a great opportunity for higher revenues, be it through paid partnerships or traditional ads in videos. However, it is not clear whether Instagram will be paying the content creators for what they create on IGTV.
YouTube pays content creators via a revenue share and the company claims there are many earning $10,000 per month, while some of the biggest YouTubers are earning $100,000 per month. It also claims the number of content creators with growing incomes is increasing. I’m very sure IGTV won’t be able to replicate this kind of revenue status immediately. I guess YouTube is still on the lead because many of them won’t be keen to abandon YouTube, solely based on the revenue factor!
So is IGTV a potential threat? Will it replace YouTube completely? Well, its a Yes and a No! Instagram and IGTV has to come up with something lucrative to lure the content creators. There is no doubt, Google owned YouTube simply can not be overthrown, and it will always be a content creator’s top priority!