How To Use Instagram’s IGTV For Business
Instagram recently announced the launch of IGTV, which is Instagram’s new video platform and a competitor to YouTube. Users can now upload vertical, long form videos directly in the native Instagram app or using the new standalone IGTV app.
With this new announcement, this give us more opportunities to connect with our audience and reach new audience. So how does IGTV work and what does it mean for online entrepreneurs?
What is IGTV?
Just like how Instagram Stories is a competitor to Snapchat, think of IGTV as a competitor to YouTube. Instagram has said that by 2021, mobile video will account for 78% of total mobile data traffic, and Instagram is betting that mobile video is going to get even bigger with the launch of IGTV.
Here’s what Instagram’s Co-Founder & CEO, Kevin Systrom, had to say about it:
“IGTV is different in a few ways. First, it’s built for how you actually use your phone, so videos are full screen and vertical. Also, unlike on Instagram, videos aren’t limited to one minute. Instead, each video can be up to an hour long.
We’ve made it simple, too. Just like turning on the TV, IGTV starts playing as soon as you open the app. You don’t have to search to start watching content from people you already follow on Instagram and others you might like based on your interests. You can swipe up to discover more — switch between ‘For You’, ‘Following’, ‘Popular’ and ‘Continue Watching’. You can also like, comment and send videos to friends in Direct.
Also like TV, IGTV has channels. But, in IGTV, the creators are the channels. When you follow a creator on Instagram, their IGTV channel will show up for you to watch. Anyone can be a creator — you can upload your own IGTV videos in the app or on the web to start your own channel.”
With the introduction of IGTV, anyone and any brand can become a creator using just one platform. Anyone on Instagram can now create long-form videos on IGTV and start their own IGTV channel. Currently, videos are restricted to 10 minutes for most accounts, and up to one hour for larger accounts, but Instagram has said that eventually they will remove the time limit.
And unlike YouTube, all of the long-form videos on IGTV will be vertical, since it is a mobile-only platform. IGTV’s videos can be watched directly in the Instagram app or by clicking the IGTV button on someone’s Instagram profile, plus you’ll also get a notification in the native Instagram app when someone you follow posts a new video to IGTV.
And just like Facebook live videos, viewers can like or comment on IGTV videos while they’re watching them. When you open the IGTV app, a video will automatically start playing, very similar to a traditional TV. To change to a different video, all you need to do is to swipe to the side to watch the next video.
Instagram also curates videos that they think you’ll enjoy, plus you can also watch the trending videos. Like a video that you’re watching? You’ll be able to share IGTV videos through Instagram Direct.
At the moment, Instagram is not including ads yet in their IGTV videos, but I’m confident that this will change in no time. Instagram did say that there are plans to allow creators to monetize the videos, probably similar to what creators are currently doing on YouTube.
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How to use IGTV for business
So what can online entrepreneurs do with IGTV?
Well, the fact that IGTV videos are vertical only means that there is less pressure to create professional videos. Instead, Instagram is encouraging creators to use their mobile phones to record the videos.
Now, this also means that you probably won’t be able to repurpose existing videos for IGTV, or if you really want to, you’ll need to vertically crop those videos. But maybe that’s the thing… you don’t want to be serving the same content across different channels or the same content on YouTube and on IGTV anyway.
Some videos that will work great for IGTV include: tutorials, unboxing of your products, product demos, office tours, behind-the-scenes, educational videos, and so much more.
How to get started on IGTV
You would first need to create your IGTV channel, which you can do so through the IGTV app. That would take you less than a minute and then you can start uploading your videos.
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Just like on YouTube, you wanna make sure that your videos have an appropriate title and description so that people can find your video on IGTV.
You can also add links in your descriptions which will allow your viewers to click on any call to action and be taken to your website or a landing page.
I hope this helped explain how Instagram’s IGTV works and how you can use IGTV for your business.
Will you start creating content on IGTV? If so, what type of content will you be creating? Let me know by leaving a comment below.
Chrys was bitten by the entrepreneurial bug at an early age. By age 27, Chrys has started and ran two online businesses. Chrys now runs Chrys Media, a company that runs online conferences for online entrepreneurs.