Instagram made headlines on June 20, 2018 when it launched Instagram TV or IGTV. Designed for longer formats, brands and content creators can now stream videos up to an hour in length. This is a big change from the previous 1 minute limitation on regular Instagram profiles. As companies and brands consider their content strategies, social influencers and fashion, like Versace, Gucci and Louis Vuitton are already making their mark on the new service. For marketers, IGTV represents a great new channel to promote brands, products and services, and to increase Instagram followers and engagement.
A technical roadblock exists, however, when promoting these new Instagram TV URLs on other social networks like Facebook and Twitter. Most Instagram users are not logged in to the stripped down browser that is embedded inside the Facebook app and the Twitter app. So when they click to view the IGTV content, there is no link or button to help them get into the Instagram app to like or comment or to begin following the brand. This limits the social engagement potential of Instagram TV content.
Consider this Versace video on IGTV when shared on Facebook. There are multiple prompts on this page to login and to signup to Instagram, however, what if you are one of the millions of Instagram users who are already signed up and logged into the app? Rather than login to the Instagram website, most users will abandon at this point.
Promoting typical web URLs for IGTV videos could lead to a lot of clicks but very little social engagement. Opening the IGTV video in the app will result in more views, likes, sharing, and more followers for your brand. The solution is to use deep linking when promoting IGTV videos in other marketing channels.
App deep linking platform designed for marketers like URLgenius support deep linking into Instagram TV content even when linking from other social networks like Facebook, Snapchat, TikTok and Twitter. Marketers can insert URLgenius IGTV deep links into emails, websites, display advertising and any other channel to more directly promote specific IGTV content.
How to Create IGTV Deep Links
IGTV video content can be played from a desktop computer and are listed at the top of a profile when you are logged into Instagram. To create an IGTV deep link, navigate to the video you want to link to and notice the link has “tv” in the path. Copy the link for pasting into URLGenius:
Here is the link for this video:
Once you copy the link, paste it into the deep linking platform which will return an updated link. URLgenius users can paste the link in the box provided on the home page. You’ll see the IGTV icon which lets you know URLgenius understood the link type you pasted.
Customize the end of the link to help you find it in the dashboard and then select “Compose”.
The next screen brings you to the settings page where you can copy the IGTV deep link and paste into other marketing channels. You can also create a QR code as a way to link to your IGTV content from printed and other offline materials. URLgenius also lets you create a QR codes to Instagram profiles, pictures and hashtags.
Here’s the URLgenius link for this video – try it on a mobile device:
When clicking from an Apple device, iOS will always confirm if if the user wants to leave the Facebook app to go to another app while Android will just open the Instagram app and play the IGTV video without confirming.
Need help creating deep links or QR codes to IGTV videos? Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
See these “how-to” articles for more deep linking and QR code best practices: