IGTV and the Evolving Instagram Ecosystem

If you haven’t noticed, everything is coming up Instagram these days.

The platform has been rolling out updates faster than Lebron changes teams and there can be no doubt that Instagram is here to play. For many of us, we remember when Instagram launched on July 16, 2010 (happy 8th birthday soon, btw) when it was just a photo app.

If I remember correctly, there wasn’t much you could do except scroll through the photos. I don’t think there was a like or comment feature to let your friends know that their bathroom selfie was “on fleek,” you know, without actually having to say that. Out loud. To their face. 

Nowadays, it’s the EVERYTHING app. In Instagram alone, users can post to their feed, tag locations, search hashtags, comment, reply, reply to comments, shoot video, post video or photo stories, go live, run a poll, group video chat, attach music from Spotify, and upload edited, long-form video with IGTV.

Which got me thinking…what are they trying to do?

Instagram is Creating an Ecosystem

Just like Facebook and my couch with a USB charger, cupholders, and a recliner is set up in such a way that I never have to leave it, Instagram is creating an ecosystem that competes with every single social media option out there. They don’t want you to have to ever leave Instagram. They are even competing with their own parent company, which makes me love this scrappy lil’ app even more! 

Try this for your face:

You want short little bursts of text like Twitter? We’ve got the text option in stories. Go crazy.

You want live video like Facebook? We’ve got the longest selfies ever.

You want stories and DMs? Awwww, Snap! Stole it, admitted it, and dares you to tell on us.

You want a wall to post stuff to for dialogue and conversation? Boom! Showing off my dinner since 2010!

You want YouTube? IGTV, ever heard of it?

Instagram is asking the users “What do any of your other social media platforms got that I don’t got?” (which I clearly wrote in a New York accent)

And there’s really only one answer: the ability to share other people’s content. However, that’s being beta tested right now.

The App that Can’t Stop, Won’t Stop

The reality is, Instagram is creating an ecosystem that can meet all of your social media needs and you never have to leave the app. All on mobile. Oh yeah, and it can also run ads. Cha-ching.

So, churches. Are you getting on board with this platform yet? It’s growing like crazy, especially since Snapchat has decided to corner the red-light district of the internet as its own and Facebook is struggling with high-profile info-laundering and stoic avoidance of accountability. (translation: Pornchat and Zuckerbots)

What are your thoughts? Do you think Instagram is going to ever pass up Facebook? Can it be the one platform to rule them all? Will the Riddler ever be played on screen again in a Batman film?

I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments. You can also follow me on Instagram or join The Seminary of Hard Knocks Facebook group to continue the conversation!

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