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Why can’t Instagram get anybody to care about IGTV?
Instagram pulled out all the stops when it announced IGTV to the world in June.
Though the platform's hub for longform video content — think YouTube, but with intentionally vertically-oriented video — was anything but a surprise given all the leaks leading up to its launch, Instagram threw celebrations around the world to introduce people to its newest feature. In New York, this translated to sitting in the company's new Manhattan HQ and waiting several hours for a glitchy livestream of Kevin Systrom, Instagram's co-founder and then-CEO, onstage in San Francisco. Cotton candy was served in Champagne flutes. This was all a little over three months ago and chances are good, if you'd even heard anything at all about IGTV, that was the last time you heard about it. And, if you're Instagram, that's a problem.
The company launched IGTV with the help of a handful of creators who already boasted significant followings on the platform, hoping that their fans would follow them: LaurDIY with 4.6 million followers, KingBach with 16.4 million, and JiffPom, a dog with 8.9 million followers. In addition to their Instagram followings, many are, first and foremost, YouTubers. Instagram is stepping on YouTube's turf with IGTV, so working with creators popular on both platforms makes sense. (It's a turf that YouTube has proven is rife with ad money, the reason why getting IGTV right is so important to Instagram and, even more important to its parent company, Facebook.) Those creators, ideally, would be able to bring their fans from both YouTube, and traditional Instagram, over to IGTV. Scott Fisher, founder of Select — the digital talent management agency that represents, among others, LaurDIY — said that while some die-hard fans are watching, the audience for IGTV "isn't fully there yet … even huge celebrities and influencers are struggling to get the same types of views [on IGTV] they get on YouTube or their feed."