How Small Businesses can use Instagram Video for Marketing [Podcast]


Instagram continues to grow rapidly in terms of users and activity. With the addition of 15 second videos to the existing mobile app and other new features, Instagram offers a valuable way for business marketings to create, produce, and socially distribute rich media videos.

This Halftime Mike Podcast by host Mike Gingerich gives a quick 20 minute overview of Instagram's video tool and ways it can be used by businesses in online and social media marketing.

Play podcast now:   [powerpress]

Subscribe on iTunes: Halftime Mike on iTunes   |     Subscribe via RSS   | Listen on Stitcher.


Halftime Mike Podcast Background:

You can find my podcast episodes easily by bookmarking this page or going to

 What’s with the “Halftime” theme?

I’m a Hoosier native from the state of Indiana where basketball is HUGE!  I love basketball and believe it has parallels to life that are relevant for those seeking an edge in business today. Social Media has transformed business.  Today’s business must be socially savvy, digitally relevant, and able to:

  • Respond quickly
  • Adapt each day
  • Understand the opportunities
  • Execute with excellence

All of these skills are also necessary in basketball.  So my podcasts reflect me.  No nonsense, straight, practical talk on social media and business marketing. I’m a student of the game of basketball from coaching my kids teams, to watching high school, college and pro basketball, I love to watch, learn, adapt, and coach others implementing the best strategies to help them improve.  I bring this over to social media marketing and business consulting for digital success.  I firmly believe that the “game” of social media marketing is in full swing and savvy marketers need to stop at “halftime” and take 20 minutes to reflect on the “first half”.  Then, based on the learning’s and insights gained in each “Halftime Mike Podcast“, go out and execute the things learned to achieve success!

This Podcast

Instagram unveiled a video feature for their mobile app that transforms their already-powerful photo sharing network into a multimedia dynamo!

Combine that with the fact that Instagram offers ease of sharing on Facebook, Twitter and Tumblr, and the future looks bright for marketers who take advantage of the new format to reach their online community.

In this podcast, I explore 6 ways that you can use the new video feature to create visually compelling stories and promote your brand and marketing message online.


What Instagram Has to Offer

The new Instagram video feature actually offers capabilities that social media marketers will want to note.  Here’s a look at what Instagram has to offer.

  • Length: Instagram Video offers up to 15 seconds of video recording. Vine offers a maximum of 6 seconds.
  • Editing: Instagram offers users the ability to delete a segment from their video. With Vine, users must delete the entire video and start over.
  • Filters: Instagram brings their unique set of custom photo filters to their video tool, enabling users to add a filter to their video. Vine offers no filters at this time.
  • Audience: Instagram is currently used by over 130 million people. Vine’s audience is counted at 13 million users.
  • Cover Image Selection: Instagram lets you scroll through stills from the video and easily select the best cover photo for your video. This is important because the first impression can entice your audience to click through to view the video. Vine does not offer this feature.
  • Facebook In-Line Viewing: One of the most important differences is that Instagram videos play in-line on Facebook for desktop users. Like YouTube and Facebook videos, a Facebook user can click and watch the clip right within Facebook. Vine videos must be viewed by clicking out of Facebook. Conversely, it’s worth noting that Instagram videos must be viewed on Twitter by clicking out of Twitter.


Six Ways Marketers Can Use Instagram’s New Video Tool

With its photo features, Instagram already had significant uses for digital marketers.  Now, with the addition of video, that value just grew exponentially!
Here’s an outline of ways you can capitalize on Instagram’s video feature for business.

#1 Create a Product Demo and Answer FAQs

Sometimes, a simple how-to video can answer your customers’ questions quickly and efficiently. Make a list of the most-asked questions your customer service department gets and use Instagram short videos to answer them.

For example, show how simple your product is to set up. Shoot step-by-step installation video segments and add narrations to give your viewers additional helpful information about your product.


Example of TabSite demo of Facebook Page App.


#2 Create a Visual Portfolio of Company Work

If a picture of your work is worth a thousand words, imagine what 15 seconds of video communicates to your community!

Shoot videos of the work you’ve done for recent clients to create a video portfolio of snippets for potential customers to browse through.

From a coffee shop showcasing the skill of their barista, to a manufacturer showcasing new producsts, the uses are unlimited!

Capturing creativity can inspire in-store visits.  view:


#3 Highlight Special Offers and Events

Fifteen seconds is a significant amount of time to promote your special offer or event with video. Flip the camera view mode to add a personal message to the footage of your product special.

Use the description field to emphasize and reinforce the video message and add a hashtag to track conversions or extend your reach.

A short video of what you have to offer might be just the type of content you need toreach certain audiences.


#4 Invite Fan and Follower Submissions via Hashtags

Invite your audience to submit Instagram video with a hashtag to enter a contest, submit a hiring pitch or promote your live event.

Comedian Louie Anderson asked people to compete for a spot as his opening act in Las Vegas by submitting an audition video with the hashtag #Open4Louie. Louie’s team tracked the hashtag to review each video and reach out to the creators of those they liked.

twitter_com_LouieAnderson_statuses_348178772027117569Louie Anderson audition invitation.

Is your audience on Instagram? If so, this might be a great way to engage with them.


#5 Humanize Your Brand, Share your Culture

We often hear about how brands “need to become human.” Social media has blurred the lines with real-time, real-life engagement between companies and customers, creating a need for companies to be transparent and more open.

Instagram videos offer an opportunity for brands to do this in bite-sized, easily digestible nuggets that showcase their culture and style. They can help differentiate your company from its competitors.

HubSpot sharing a video of their new office space. View:

#6 Increase Engagement on Facebook

Videos and photos inspire the most engagement (comments, likes and shares) on Facebook. With Facebook integrating Instagram videos from inception, this can be a tool smart marketers use to boost community interaction on Facebook.


You can use to copy the video URL and then easily include the Instagram video in a Facebook Page post.

Instagram videos provide another tool for savvy Facebook marketers to use to build engagement with their community.


Summing it up:

While the new Instagram video feature was only recently launched, the potential uses are vast! With Instagram already having an active user base of over 130 million users, this new tool offers some rich possibilities for marketers.

What do you think? Have you created any Instagram videos for your company? What results have you seen?

If you liked this podcast episode, your help would be appreciated!  Go to iTunes and give Halftime Mike on iTunes  a positive review.  This helps me increase my exposure and build my audience!

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