If you’re like the rest of us, you follow a number of influencers on Instagram and have been intrigued by the concept of Instagram TV (IGTV). You think it’s cool, but you’re not entirely sure what the deal is with it. Is it a TV station? What does it do? What does it mean for you? What does it mean for marketing? If you’re still in the phase of uncertainty, questions and curiosity, you’ve come to the right place. Here are the IGTV basics that you need to know.
What Is IGTV?
IGTV is an application through Instagram. It allows users to shoot vertical, full screen mobile-friendly videos onto a channel. To find IGTV, all you have to do is open your Instagram app, go to the home button and click to red/orange icon with the TV on it on the top right.
When you click this, you will be able to search IGTV or pick one of the categories below which include For You, Following, Popular and Continue Watching. However, if you want to step it up and create your own channel, all you have to do is hit the gear icon in the middle of the TV screen, click Create Channel and follow the instructions.
It’s really quite simple! Enjoy watching the various vloggers you follow creating videos and content, or suggested videos of people you might follow. Also, the cool part about channels on IGTV, is that the individual influencers and creators are the actual channels. It’s a unique spin on the “TV” idea.
Who Can Use It?
Anyone can use the IGTV application, but it comes with restrictions for certain people. If you’re an influencer with a certain amount of followers, you can use the app to its full capabilities by uploading a video that’s up to an hour long. If you’re a regular user, your videos need to be between 15 seconds to 10 minutes long, so as you can see, it’s much shorter than influencers. Similar to Instagram stories, influencers can add a “Swipe Up” link on their stories with a link to a certain blog or landing page, but regular users cannot. With that being said, there are some similarities (and differences) with IGTV and Instagram. The good news is that it’s very easy to learn and incredibly user friendly.
What Does It Mean For Marketing?
IGTV means a lot for marketing and brings a lot of creative opportunities to the table. It’s a whole new ballpark for social media marketing. Instagram stories have been great, but now marketers have the opportunity to shoot videos on their channels and leave them there for all their users to see. They can do Q&A’s about their brand or company, offer tips and insights on social media and marketing, provide information on various topics such as SEO and have interview with various people. There are so many opportunities with IGTV that marketers need to seize. There is no time like the present to utilize new marketing tools and opportunities.
IGTV VS YOUTUBE
IGTV versus YouTube. Should we worry? I’d say yes (a little bit). IGTV is now in direct competition with YouTube. It sure won’t replace it, but it’s going to give it a run for its money. According to Business Insider, YouTube has been offering some of its biggest influencers six figure checks so they don’t move to IGTV. I think they’re a little worried, wouldn’t you say? Personally, I would much rather create videos on IGTV than YouTube. For one, I already have my followers established. Two, I don’t have to go through the process of creating a YouTube station. Finally, I’m already comfortable with Instagram, so I’d feel a lot less nervous making videos on IGTV instead of YouTube. People have many different opinions about these two. Some think IGTV will significantly hurt YouTube while others think it will compliment it. My opinion is that it will hurt it. We’ll just have to wait and see.
At first, I wasn’t sure how I felt about it. Whenever a new app comes out, there’s always a learning curve and time spent adjusting to the change. For the few first weeks of it being out, I didn’t really watch any channels. However, after a few weeks, I started to watch IGTV with some of my favorite bloggers and vloggers, and I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t hooked. What I like about it is that it’s one step easier than YouTube. Although YouTube is vastly different than IGTV and lets you make longer videos, I feel like it’s a nice step for people who many want to start vlogging, but aren’t ready to take the full plunge. Also, for marketing purposes, not everyone wants a YouTube channel, and this allows people to still make videos with less steps. They can use their already established Instagram audience to create different content on the same platform. I see this as a major win. One thing to note here though, is that YouTube is owned by Google. So in terms of SEO, they definitely have an edge over IGTV. So we'll just have to wait and see how this pans out!
There you have it! All you need to know about IGTV! Now you’re ready to try it for yourself…or at least watch some channels. Enjoy and let your creative mind have some fun!
Owner & CEO
Kiley Peters is the Owner and CEO of Brainchild Studios, a boutique digital content marketing and website creation agency primarily serving brands targeting millennial moms and nonprofits supporting women and children. She is also the Founder of the Work From Home Playbook, a series of online courses guiding aspiring entrepreneurial moms through the steps of starting a virtual business. She also launched the Brainchild Fund, a nonprofit initiative to support women and girls in business and entrepreneurship Follow her on Instagram.more posts by Kiley →