Not to get confused with HGTV, IGTV stands for Instagram Television. It is the newest feature on Instagram, as well as having its own stand-alone app, that allows users to post long-form, vertical videos. IGTV is a new way to show people a laid-back style of content. Much like Instagram stories where you can post “behind the scenes” action, IGTV will be an outlet for those who want to show their artistic side in a brief way.
Why would Instagram need to do this if it already has the stories feature? How do I use it? Here are some answers to the questions on IGTV you might be thinking:
Why Was IGTV Created?
IGTV was launched on June 20th, 2018, and is intended for people who are video content creators. In order to first promote IGTV, Instagram contacted celebrities who got their social media following more organically.
This means, instead of asking famous television and movie celebrities, Instagram reached out to many well-known Youtube content creators, whose viewers most likely stumbled across their channels after following related channels. There are some television celebrities who use IGTV, such as the Kardashian and Jenner family; however, they tend to use social media more frequently and understand this audience better than someone who specifically works in the television industry.
However, this does not mean IGTV is exclusive to celebrities or well-known videographers. As long as you have the Instagram app, anyone can create their own IGTV channel!
How do I Use IGTV?
Although you can watch IGTV from the Instagram app, that does not mean Instagram videos you see on your feed will be any longer. On the Instagram app at the very top right corner is an icon of a retro-type television next to the paper plane icon, which is where you will click to view IGTV videos.
When the television icon is a sunset color (much like Instagram’s gradient color scheme of yellow, orange, pink and purple), that means Instagram is alerting you that someone you follow has posted a video on IGTV. When you first click on the Instagram app and the TV icon is that color, there is usually a banner that drops down to tell you who has recently posted, and which disappears after a couple of seconds so you can read it.
When you first click on the app, you will see the first video already playing on the top half of the screen. On the bottom half, you will see a slideshow of other content creators’ videos. You can scroll through to watch the ones that interest you.
Each video shows the title, the user’s Instagram handle, and the length of the video. As you can see, these videos can be up to ten minutes long!
Above the video there is a search bar and a variety of topics to chose from. The “For You” section is the first section that will automatically play and show when you first log into the app, because Instagram knows you engage with these users’ profiles the most. Also, if you click out of a video, there is a section called “Continue Watching” that pulls up videos you started and haven’t yet finished.
How do I Create My Own IGTV Channel?
If you are interested in creating your own channel, all you have to do is click on the Tool icon on the right side of the screen, and click “Create Channel.” From there, it is pretty simple to continue on. If you have more than one Instagram account, confirm which Instagram account you would like to use. You will then see your profile next to that tool icon on the main screen. Now to upload your video onto IGTV. You cannot create a video using the IGTV app, so you will have to upload from videos saved on your smartphone.
When you view your channel, there is a “plus” (+) button on the right side of the screen where you can add your content. If you do not have a thumbnail already created, Instagram allows you to create your own thumbnail from the video you posted. Just click which screenshot image you want viewers to see.
For a more detailed explanation on how to create Instagram videos, check out this Youtube video by Veena V, creator of Mum to Millionaire, a Youtube channel supporting working mothers in the business world.
IGTV has the potential to grow into a very popular method of using social media. Instagram has already reached out to a wide variety of famous content creators, creating a buzz for the new feature. Although Youtube and Facebook are most likely not going anywhere, IGTV could become the next big way to view video, and the use of video content is a growing marketing tactic.