Instagram wants its users to watch more video, and the company has expanded its library to make that happen.
The photo and video sharing site has extended the number of topic-based video channels which make the "Explore" section of the app, well, explorable. The channels will come with the label "Picked for you" and will cater to the particular interests of every user.
Video channels first appeared in Instagram during the spring of 2015, but the recent update brings a welcome addition. The slew of topical channels are better targeted at what users want to see and are prone to increase the engagement of the app's users.
No less than 23 new channels are loaded into Instagram, ranging from niche topics such as makeup for special effects to hair braiding to broader areas such as ceramics and fishing. This means that if you are a sportive fisherman or someone who just took pottery as a hobby, Instagram has you covered.
The app curates and algorithmically generates the video channels. No specific details were released on how Instagram evaluates the preferences for each user, but we can make an educated guess. Just as with other Explore suggestions, the individually picked videos rely on the liked posts and account follows to make a pertinent recommendation.
Alongside Facebook, Instagram has a blooming interest to integrate video into its platform. In early April, Instagram introduced 60-second videos as well as a new video ad format. The company explained why it strayed from its 15-second clips. Instagram analysts noticed an increase in streaming time by 40 percent during the previous six months. This led to the conclusion that longer videos signify diverse stories from the accounts users love the most.
The company's new strategy seems to be paying off. Instagram points out in a blog post that users spent 150 percent more time streaming videos in the six months after the changes were implemented.
By adding the new 23 channels, video engagement throughout the platform can only go up.
Here is the full list of new topic-based channels: Oddly Satisfying, Cheerleaders, Dancers, Calligraphy, Special Effects Makeup, Comedians, Barbers, Cake Decorating, Ceramics, Comic Book Artists, Pitbulls, Gymnasts, Nail Artists, Hair Tutorials, Singers, Bakers, Makeup Tutorials, Ballet Dancers, Trickshots, Artists, Makers & Artisans, Baseball Players and Skateboarders.
Keep in mind that, at the moment, the Explore updates only work for the United States. Instagram promises to make them available globally as soon as possible.
What subjects would you like Instagram to cover when it releases even more topic-based video channels? We are eager to learn your opinion, so let us know in the comments section below.