IGTV is the underrated and underused video streaming service created by Instagram, for Instagram. It released in June 2018 but unfortunately, hasn’t taken off like Instagram expected.
The main reason for this is because not a lot of people use it! So we’ll give you the ultimate guide to IGTV so that you will want to start using it. Therefore, more people will use it, and so on, and so forth!
What Is IGTV?
IGTV stands for Instagram TV. It’s a bit like YouTube, in that creators upload longer videos to share with their followers and audience.
You can find it within the Instagram app. However, there is a separate app for IGTV available which you can download here for free.
IGTV is the home for longer, mostly vertical, in-depth videos. They are usually vertical, since that’s the only way the app is designed. They can also be up to one hour long! That’s 59 minutes longer than an Instagram feed video can be.
This is a great feature for people who might post long Instagram stories. Now you can put them all into an IGTV video which will remain on your feed forever (as long as you don’t delete it, of course).
You don’t have to create your own IGTV account either. IGTV is accessible to any Instagram user and will show up as part of your Instagram feed. This makes it super easy for new or old followers to find your IGTV videos.
IGTV was created to educate, entertain and inspire.
Some IGTV videos might include unboxings, tutorials, reviews, tours, interviews and more.
How To Make An IGTV Video?
This is the most asked question, of course! In fact, it took me a long while to figure out how to edit an IGTV video. Since most editing apps didn’t allow you to edit in 9:16, you probably had to go looking elsewhere for a place to edit your vertical IGTV video. Of course, you don’t need to edit it but it makes for an easier watch if you cut the bits where you hesitate and add a nice filter to stand out.
Apps like iMovie still don’t allow 9:16 editing so that is ruled out when creating a vertical IGTV.
We’ll walk you through the steps of creating an IGTV so by the end of this read, you’re ready to go.
Come Up With An Idea
Of course, step one is to have an idea of what you’re going to film. Our top tip would be to make sure it’s relevant to your account. For example, if you are a home decor account, try filming an IGTV video on how to decorate your living room for Christmas!
Perhaps you post about fashion. Try filming an IGTV post about basic poses for showing off a grand outfit!
After all, there are definitely lots of ideas when it comes to creating your first Instagram video.
Now it’s time to film. However, before you start, make sure you’re preparing for a high-quality video. If your IGTV is low quality, it’s not going to get a lot of views.
What to remember:
- Natural lighting is key. If you can’t get natural lighting, use a ring light for evenly distributed light.
- Angles. Make sure your angles are flattering and easy to look at. Don’t film a speaking video from the chin up. It just looks odd! Experiment with angles and look at other people’s videos to find a great angle for you.
- Sound quality is so important. If you can, use professional recording equipment but if not, make sure the surrounding area is quiet and that you speak loud and clear.
- Use a tripod. For stable videos, using a tripod is an awesome idea. You don’t want your phone to fall over three times when filming. It’s not professional.
- Be approachable. If you’re awkward in your video, viewers will also feel awkward. Make sure you’re confident, friendly and relaxed when filming an IGTV. If you’re nervous, try again later!
- Have a plan. It might even be a good idea to script your IGTV video. If not, maybe have bullet points to help keep you on track.
Editing Your IGTV
As mentioned, it took a while for editing apps to adjust to the 9:16 ratio. But now there are a few awesome apps that make editing your IGTV video super easy (and free!).
The first one is the Filmm app. This app was designed for Instagram stories which are also in the 9:16 ratio. This makes the app perfect for editing your IGTV. You can combine lots of clips together for your video and cut stuff where necessary. Plus, you can also speed up or slow down your clips! Then, to top it off, you can edit the colors of your video. There are dozens of lovely filters as well as specific editing tools for exposure, saturation, clarity and more.
The next app we recommend is InShot. This app is super easy to use and makes it really easy to split your footage and edit specific sections. You can speed up, slow down, add music, choose filters and much more. I like this app for more specific editing. It’s user-friendly and again, free!
The final app we recommend is Bolt. It’s a minimal editing app and great for beginners. You can combine clips here, too. It’s mess-free and easy to use. Plus, it has its own music library with songs broken down into genres. It’s super easy to find the exact song you need with this app!
To edit the filters and colors of your final video, you can use the VSCO Premium app to edit your video. There are over 100 filters to choose from.
Now that your video is edited, it’s time to go.
Upload, Caption, Hashtag, Post
You can upload your IGTV video via the Instagram or IGTV app. Simply click the plus button and add your edited video.
Choose the photo you want to be the cover art. We recommend making a photo for this and uploading it from your camera roll. This will entice more people to click on your video! If you use a picture that fits your Instagram feed then you can also add the video to your feed which will increase your views.
Click next. Title the video, add a description, and choose the rest of the settings.
Titling your video is fun! It needs to be snappy, engaging and relevant to the video. For the description, be clear on what the video is about so viewers know exactly what to expect. Don’t reveal all but do be clear.
If you want, you can add the video to an IGTV series. If you post a lot of tutorials, make a tutorial series so that viewers can find all your tutorials in one place.
Click post a preview if you want it to appear on your Instagram feed. This is the best way to get IGTV views. It could multiply your reach by 10x as many views.
The other options are to share on Facebook or to add a business partner. Do these if relevant.
When ready, click post and wait for it to upload. Make sure you engage with commenters quickly to increase engagement.
Post hashtags in the comment section of the IGTV video to get even more reach!
Of course, there are many IGTV FAQ which we will answer here to better your understanding of this awesome feature.
Q: Can IGTV videos be horizontal?
A: Yes, they can. In May 2019, Instagram came out with the ability to create horizontal IGTV. Most creators will still utlise the vertical option as it’s what we’re used to but it’s also great to have the horizontal option.
Q: Is IGTV popular?
A: You might be wondering if IGTV is the best platform for your videos, or if YouTube or even Instagram stories might be a better choice. While IGTV didn’t start off well, it definitely is growing. However, there are still some issues. One of the main drawbacks is that there is no monetization. It doesn’t make sense for a frequent content creator to use IGTV over YouTube when they can monetize their YouTube videos and get money.
Q: What are some IGTV issues?
Besides monetization, there is also the issue of the search function. There is no way to search for specific videos on the IGTV app, only profiles. So if you type in hair tutorials, you’ll be directed to users with “hair tutorials” in their Instagram name. Another issue is the disconnection from the Instagram app. While it’s now easier to reach viewers by posting your IGTV into your feed, there is still not a lot of ways to promote your video outside of that. Only time will tell how IGTV will really fare in the big bad world of mobile video viewing.
Q: Is IGTV free?
Q: Can I see my IGTV insights?
Not really. At least not to the same specs as your other photos if you have a business account. You can see how many people viewed your video, the comments, and the likes, but you cannot see the overall reach or where that reach came from.
We hope that answered all your IGTV questions and that you feel ready to start your own IGTV series!