This week, Instagram has rolled out it’s latest major update: IGTV.
After playing around with the new platform after I got access, I’m here to share all I know so far about IGTV, and to give you seven IGTV ideas that you can steal for your brand or business.
What is IGTV?
IGTV is Instagram's own video content hub, focused on longer-form video content, with videos of up to a maximum of 60 minutes.
This is a potential game-changer for content creators who specialize in longer form videos. IGTV gives everyone the ability to leverage videos in a totally different way than before – and all in vertical format. We’ll talk a little about why this is so important later on in this post.
IGTV: Everything You Need To Know in a Nutshell (So Far)
As you may have noticed (if you've updated to the latest version of the app), there's now a small TV icon next to your share airplane at the top right of your Instagram feed home screen. This is where IGTV channels live, and where you’ll be able to watch content from people you follow, discover new videos, see your channel and upload you own IGTV videos.
There's also a new, standalone IGTV app, and web uploads as well. Here are some details on the functionality of IGTV:
- Your IGTV Channel sits next to your Instagram Stories Highlights on your Instagram profile or they can be accessed from the news feed home screen.
- The screenshot below (left) is what the IGTV screen looks like, while the shot on the right is the view from your own channel.
- You're able to add a description and title to each video before you upload it, while you'll also be able to upload your own thumbnail, or choose a thumbnail from your video for the video’s cover.
- You can share IGTV videos to Instagram Direct Messages (so much opportunities for added reach)
- You can link directly to an IGTV video from your Instagram Stories (drive traffic to your IGTV videos with a swipe up)
- Video uploads must be in vertical format
- Videos need to be between 15 seconds and 1 hour long.
- You’ll be able to follow “channels” and viewers will be able to leave comments and likes on your videos. You will get like and comment notifications in the same screen you get your regular account like, comment and follow notifications.
- There are insights available for you IGTV video. So far IGTV insights include: Views, Likes, Comments, and Average percentage watched. There's even a handy chart to show you the points at which video viewership increases and drops.
- There is a “copy link” option on the videos. I tested this and was not able to watch the video, but I’m sure that later on you’ll be able to link directly to your IGTV video from outside sources, and perhaps even embed these videos onto blog or landing pages.
The Instagram blog announcement states IGTV is:
Mobile first: IGTV is built for how you actually use your phone: vertical and full screen.
Simple and intuitive: It starts playing as soon as you open the app. You don’t have to search or browse to get started, and it’s easy to multitask.
Curated: IGTV is focused on the creators you love most and already follow on Instagram.
As noted, this new addition to Instagram could be a total game changer in the way we consume videos online – and it’s so exciting. IGTV is giving people, brands and business an opportunity to lead and be the first to create long-form vertical videos in your space.
The IG blog highlights that “by 2021, mobile video will account for 78% of total mobile data traffic" and that they’ve “learned that younger audiences are spending more time with amateur content creators and less time with professionals”. So if you’ve been thinking about creating longer form videos but haven’t jumped in yet, or if you’ve created longer videos and haven’t seen much traction, here's your chance to get in at ground level and build.
And to kick things up that extra notch, Instagram also announced that it's now hit one billion monthly active users.
7 IGTV Ideas You Can Steal For Your Brand Or Business
Creating content for IGTV doesn’t have to be fancy - the low-fi focus of the platform means that there's a lower barrier of entry.
Here are some easy IGTV ideas you can steal for your brand or business:
Interviews and Q&A’s with industry leaders, or others within your organization, can provide great value to your audience. This is a simple way to get started with IGTV, free of time constraints or fear of bad connections and interruptions of live videos.
2. Video greetings/Introductions
These are extremely popular on YouTube and a good intro video introduction can let visitors know who you are, what you do and what they can expect from you on your channel or Instagram profile.
3. Product Demos/Tutorials/How To’s
Product demos, tutorials, and how to’s are the best way to teach your audience how to use your product or service. Creating a library of useful, instructional information can be so beneficial to establishing your credibility and authority on your particular subject.
4. Recurring Segments
Do you share tips or create other forms of content on a regular basis? Why not create a video version of your recurring efforts?
This can be an awesome way to turn blog posts into more easily digestible videos with IGTV. If used consistently, you can give your audience something to look forward to week after week - and keep them coming back, boosting engagement.
5. IGTV Exclusives
Another great way to use Intstagram’s latest video feature is to create videos that are shared exclusively on IGTV. Any of the ideas here can be turned into IGTV exclusives, giving your fans an extra reason to follow you.
If you already go live on a regular basis, or create educational videos, turn them into IGTV content.
This is an opportunity to provide value, and potentially reach even more people through Instagram. It's a great way to add value to your Instagram presence, and a big opportunity to establish credibility.
This can also be an excellent way to create a resource library for your followers.
7. Repurpose Content
The last idea you can steal for your brand or business is to repurpose other videos or recorded live steams and put them on your IGTV channel.
This may require some editing if your video was originally shot horizontally, but what a great way to extend the life of your Instagram Live Story videos past 24 hours (I know I’m going to do this with my #CoffeeWithDhari Instagram Live Stories).
Well, that’s it for now - the more I think about this new Instagram update the more ideas start swirling in my head. I hope that everyone reading this knows that they can create really great video content that attracts followers, and turns them into customers – all with just a cell phone.
Please take advantage of IGTV, and the opportunities it’s opening for creators all over the world.
A version of this post was first published on Dhariana Lozano's blog.