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Instagram Broadcast Channels: Group Chats, but Better

Plixi Team

Jun 12, 2024 11 min read

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No, they are not exactly like group chats. Instagram broadcast channels are their more sophisticated older cousin. IG always keeps creators on their toes. This was no different in 2023 when this new feature hit our phones. One day, we looked down and we saw a notification to join a broadcast channel and were a little confused. Still, the prospect of exclusive content was intriguing.

If you need some clarity even now, this article should help. As a creator, you’ll find it helpful because we break it all down!

Instagram Broadcast Channels: Group Chats, but Better

What Is a Broadcast Channel on Instagram, and How Do I Use It for My Brand?

Your favorite social media channel has now come up with the Instagram broadcast channel. Instagram has done it again. They’ve created yet another tool for you to reach your followers. Around February 2023, you started to get invitations from some of the pages that you follow. They asked you to join their broadcast channel. It may have been kind of weird to you because you’ve never seen it before. But what is a broadcast channel on Instagram?

It will help if you understand this from the point of view of the creator. You get to send mass direct messages to your followers. This happens in private groups that your followers join by choice. There, they can vote in polls, share pictures and videos, and send voice notes.

It’s like having a big conversation with your followers, except only you can speak. Yes, the members can react with emojis and take part in your polls. However, it’s the creator that drives the group’s conversations.

It Gives a Sense of Exclusivity

Some creators use their Instagram broadcast channel to share content they don’t want everyone to see. Some creators like to tease what they will share on their feeds in their broadcast channels. The members get the first look at the content and feel special. You may see them pop up in the post comments, saying that the creator shared it with them first. People like exclusivity and these channels give them that.

It’s an Echo Chamber

To be in the channel, you have to choose to be there deliberately. Only genuine fans will likely go the extra mile to see the content. You can bet that the average person in that group is a genuine fan of the content. While Instagram comments can be treacherous, creators can likely find solace here. They can get support from their followers in an oasis away from the madness.

It’s Your Personal Focus Group

Are you indecisive about content? Ask your focus group what they want to see. Do you have too many good options? Let your focus group help you choose which photo to post as the cover. Let them choose what your next reel will be about. They can tell you where to try out next for your food blog. These should be the truest supporters so that they won’t lead you astray. Reward them by telling them first when you post. This sends a stream of likes and comments to the post, thus increasing engagement. If you get too annoying, members can mute broadcast channels. They could also leave altogether.

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How To Create a Broadcast Channel on Instagram: A New Tool for Creators Only 

Calling all Creators! IG has something special in store for you. Share with your core followers all that you have coming down the pipeline. Or overshare with the content you don’t want to put on your feed. Yes, you have stories, but you see engagement wavering there. Your broadcast is strictly for the super fans who do want to engage with you. Do you know how to create a broadcast channel on Instagram? We can break it down for you.

It’s for Creators Only

Yes, you’re a creator. You post your photo dumps and reels online. However, Instagram has to register that you’re a creator, too. This means that you have to have your account in “creator mode.” If this is unfamiliar to you, chances are, you haven’t done it yet. So, first things first, let’s fix that. This is how you switch your account to a creator account:

  1. Launch IG on your phone.
  2. Click your profile icon in the bottom right corner of the screen.
  3. In the top right-hand corner, you’ll see the three horizontal lines. Tap that and see a menu pop up.
  4. Select “Settings and Privacy” then “Account Type & Tools.”
  5. Switch to Professional and then Select Creator.

This is how you switch from a professional account to a creator account:

  1. Go to the hamburger menu in the top right corner of the profile page.
  2. Select “Settings and privacy” from the menu.
  3. Choose “Professional Tools & Controls” next.
  4. Next, you should select “Change account type.” Of course, you choose “Creator.”

Setting Up Your Instagram Broadcast Channel

Now you’re ready to broadcast! This isn’t your usual DM process, so follow these steps carefully:

  1. Go to the homepage of your Instagram app.
  2. Next, select the DM symbol in the top right-hand corner.
  3. Tap the icon that looks like a pencil and paper.
  4. Instead of writing a message there, select “Create a broadcast channel.”
  5. You get to choose your channel name, the end date if necessary, and the audience. 
  6. Select “Create broadcast channel” as the final step.

IG will send out a notification to your following. You can include a channel link in your bio just in case your followers miss this notification. If you don’t see the “Create broadcast channel” option, maybe it’s just not available to you yet. IG does release features in increments, maybe it’s not your time yet. Bookmark this page! When IG lets you open your broadcast group, you’ll be ready!

You Can Have Multiple Channels

If you like organization, you may have one topic in mind for your broadcast channel. As a fitness influencer, the general focus of the conversation may be obvious. However, what if you’re a lifestyle influencer? You may want to talk about fashion one day and cooking recipes another. There is nothing wrong with this, but some people prefer to keep things separate.

You can create multiple broadcast channels. They can each focus on a facet of your complex brand identity. If you’re interested in making money on Instagram, you can also have a private channel. Here, you facilitate the subscribers who pay to see your content.

Join Forces With Another Creator

You can even collaborate with another creator. How does it work? If you already have a broadcast channel, IG lets you invite up to 10 other IG creators. You and your collaborators can communicate with the members of the broadcast group. In effect, for your followers, it’s like watching other people talk in a group chat. Collaborating on Instagram can bring a lot of benefits to your brand. It’s worth a try while these channels are still new. Find out if a broadcast collaboration is a good idea for you.

Why Can’t I Create a Broadcast Channel on Instagram? I Have a Creator Account.

For some people, creating a channel won’t be as easy. While IG would have you think that it’s available to millions of creators, that could still exclude you. Yes, getting left out is no fun at all. However, there could be some good reasons you don’t have the privilege yet. If you’re asking, “Why can’t I create a broadcast channel on Instagram?” then keep reading.

Did You Violate Some Community Guidelines?

IG may have forgiven you but didn’t forget. While this is largely speculation, a previous violation could be why you can’t access this feature. If IG believes you won’t use the platform prudently, they may strip some features away from you. If you shared content that many users reported, they may not want you to share that content privately. Some may consider this censorship, while others believe that IG is a private entity that can do this. Either way, try your best to stay in IG’s good graces. Shadowbans aren’t a myth. They can be the death of a flourishing IG page.

You’re Using an Old Version of the App

If your app needs an update or two, you may be missing out on the best of IG. You won’t be able to access all the features of the app if it’s running on an old version. If your phone needs updating as well, this will only hurt what you can do on IG. Check for yourself to see if these issues could be the problem. Update both the app and the phone’s operating system to access the IG features.

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I Have a Small Page. Can Anyone Create a Broadcast Channel on Instagram?

It wouldn’t be unlike Instagram to release features to a certain group first. While the prospect is intriguing, ask, “Can anyone create a broadcast channel on Instagram?” If it seems too good to be true, it might be. Having a creator account may not be the sole requirement to join in on this trend.

While this may not be a fact, these channels seem to only belong to creators with a large following. Take Halle Bailey and Raven Ross from Love is Blind, for example. They’ve created broadcast channels and have significant followings.  IG may think that smaller creators can just use the group chat method. Some people speculate that you need at least 10,000 followers to access this feature.

The only solution is to increase your following. We know, we know. You’ve been trying to all this time. Well, this is yet another reason to try your luck. That’s easier said than done, of course. Still, we have some useful pointers for the creators interested in growth.

Keep Consistent

You don’t have to post every day, but it could help. Let the algorithm know that you want to keep people on this app. Post as often as you can with quality content. If you think you are getting too repetitive, switch up the content. Let your current followers expect to see your content. Let potential new ones have a better chance of seeing you.

Use Those Hashtags

Choosing the right hashtags will get you in the right people’s search results. Use hashtags that describe the content in your photo or reel. Incorporate some general ones, but don’t focus on them. You don’t want your post to get lost in a sea of content. Use a few niche ones as well. They will increase your chance of people seeing you. Feel free to see what other influencers in your field are using for hashtags. Also, consider the IG hashtags that popular posts use. Don’t copy and paste slavishly, but use them as inspiration.

Engage With Other IG Users

You have to engage with other users for your engagement rate to go up. They’ll want to comment more when they see you talking in the comments. Take time out to like and reply to the comments people leave you. Remember: they could have scrolled and just liked the photo in their head. Their small act helped to boost their page, and you should show it some recognition. 

Practice for when you get that broadcast channel. Respond to DMs now! This may seem onerous, but remember that you can now react to DMs with emojis. You don’t need to have a full-blown conversation!

With these tips, you’re on your way to that 10,000-follower mark. In fact, you could surpass it!

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Start Your Instagram Broadcast Channels When You Grow Your Page With Plixi

Following our tips will make a huge difference for you. Your page will flourish to new heights, and big opportunities will come to you. Still, you could benefit from some tailored advice. Your page is unique and deserves growth tactics that recognize that. You may need help to expedite this growth. This is where Plixi comes in.

The team at Plixi dedicates itself to the growth of their clients’ pages. We have invested time in the tools and resources we have used over the last ten years to guarantee you results. We have a platform of Instagram influencers who understand the culture on Instagram. When you match that with excellent AI targeting technology, you can reach your goals. There’s no reason to be stagnant anymore. Instagram broadcast channels are propelling pages. If you need to increase your following to benefit, too, we can help. Start growing your IG page with Plixi today!

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