How-To Guide To IGTV

How to Use IGTV

A Comprehensive Guide

On 20th of June 2018 Instagram launched its brand new app IGTV which the CEO, Kevin Systrom calls one of their most exciting new features to date. A new app with long-form vertical video content, here’s all you need to know about IGTV.

What is IGTV?

Instagram had first launched videos on Instagram on 20th of June 2013. Now, everyone knows that you can upload short videos to Instagram in the form of posts and stories. So what makes this app any different from your normal Instagram app? Lets dive in and find out all about how to use IGTV and what this new feature means for marketers, content creators and viewers.

What Makes IGTV Unique?

  • Long Form Video Content – The main aspect of this app is that it features long form video content. Previously, Instagram has expanded its video feature to upto 1 minute. However, this app allows you to upload content between 15 seconds- 60 minutes long. Currently only some users have the ability to upload 60 minute videos whilst the rest of us can upload upto 10 minutes. This is due to change soon following which everyone will be able to upload upto 60 minute long videos.  Additionally, all videos are full screen and vertical making it perfect for mobile viewing on the go. This also makes the viewing experience much more different than how videos appear in your Instagram feed.
  • Dual Access – Instagram not only introduced IGTV as an application in its own right, but they also added the ability to watch IGTV videos within the existing Instagram app. The IGTV app is available for free for both iOS and Android. Having a separate app means that those looking for such content can have it all in one place away from all the other features of the normal Instagram app. CEO Systrom said that they figured out that people didn’t want longer videos in their feed as it would slow it down and make it feel clunky which led to them creating a new app as well as a separate section in the existing one.
  • Open for All Creators – Signing up for IGTV is extremely simple. All you need is an Instagram account. That’s it. Instagram also has no barriers when it comes to who gets to be a creator. Once you have an account you can create a channel and start uploading content using the app. At the launch Instagram featured a lot of prominent creators like Lauren Riihimaki also known as LaurDIY on YouTube, Tyler Blevins also known as Ninja on Twitch, Manny Gutierrez  also known as MannyMUA on Youtube, Katie Austin and Lele Pons. For many creators who already have content on other platforms, IGTV is a way to make content already created reach new audiences with many choosing to upload edited vertical versions of content they’d previously posted on sites like Youtube. For some creators it’s a chance to create something completely new catering to their Instagram followers.

IGTV

I GTV is a standalone vertical video application launched by Instagram. Unlike Instagram, it allows users to upload videos of up to an hour and each user page are named “channels”

Current Features

Channels

The process of uploading content to IGTV starts with creating a channel. And as mentioned above, all you need to do is click on the “Create Channel” option and Instagram will guide you through the rest. Once you have a channel all the videos you upload will be visible there. All the videos uploaded to your channel are static, which means that unlike your Instagram Stories these don’t disappear after 24 hours. They stay visible on your channel until you decide to delete them yourself.

Browse

Browsing through videos and finding what you want to watch is also very easy. Whether you open the IGTV app or the in-Instagram option you see videos divided into categories you can swipe through. The categories are “For You”, “Following”, “Popular” and “Continue Watching”. Each category has videos underneath them which you can swipe through to find what you like. There is also a search bar right above these categories which you can use if you’re looking for something else in particular. The “For You” tab has a mix of videos from people you follow and videos that Instagram thinks you would enjoy based on Instagram’s machine learning. The “Following” tab has videos from accounts you follow and the “Popular” tab has videos that are trending on IGTV.

Interaction

Just like with Instagram posts you can like and comment on IGTV videos. This helps creators interact with their audience and understand how their content is being received.  You can even reply to comments people leave on your videos as well as leave likes on comments. When you’re uploading videos to IGTV you can add a title as well as a relevant description. This description can also contain a clickable link which can take them out of the Instagram or IGTV app. You can also click on the view Insights option after clicking on the “…” option. This will lead you to your IGTV analytics where you can see your like, comments and even information on audience retention.

What’s next?

Monetization

When IGTV launched many saw it as a direct competitor for Youtube as it is the biggest video sharing platform at the moment. However, one of the biggest differences at the moment is monetization i.e., the ability to earn money based on the views received. This is something that Youtube already has which has made it the preferred platform amongst creators. At the launch of IGTV the CEO Kevin Systrom said that while IGTV doesn’t support ads at the moment, it will eventually and they will also begin sharing revenue with its creators. This is something that is sure to bring in a lot of creators.

Editing & in-app Camera Access

Currently you can’t directly shoot and upload videos on IGTV. You can only upload videos you’ve already shot and saved in your phone. IGTV also doesn’t have options to edit videos within its app which means you’ll have to edit it using other apps/softwares like iMovie, OpenShot and VideoPad. And while IGTV hasn’t made any official announcements on these features, most analysts online say that such features may eventually be rolled out to make uploading content to IGTV even easier. For more tips on how to upload IGTV videos click here.

IGTV as a Marketing Tool

Most brands and companies already use Instagram extensively as a marketing and advertising tool. With the introduction of IGTV, brands can upload longer content showcasing their products and services. Previously many brands created Youtube channels or uploaded videos to their website if they were looking to make longer videos. With IGTV, brands can now reach all of their Instagram followers without having to link to another platform.

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