Instagram TV – Is It Time For You To Start?

Now that there are more than 1 billion people using Instagram, On June 20th CEO Kevin Systrom announced that Instagram would be starting IGTV to add even more opportunity for streaming video content on its growing platform. You should remember that for many months now Hyperchat Social has been suggesting to you that all platforms are converging in the center with streaming video being the epicenter of the universe for the near term.

What brands need to know about IGTV

  • Videos are full screen and vertical
  • Video length is 15 seconds to 60 minutes (The full 60 minutes is currently only available to larger accounts or verified accounts. Everyone else has a limit of 10 minutes.)
  • Users can watch inside the Instagram app or on the IGTV app
  • Videos play automatically for users upon opening the IGTV app
  • Creators can add "swipe up" calls-to-action on videos
  • Within the IGTV app, users have the option to browse between "For You," "Following," "Popular," and "Continue Watching" tabs
  • Engagement: users can like or comment on videos, or send videos to friends in Direct
  • Creators have their own channels, like YouTube (and anyone can be a creator)
  • Videos can be uploaded to the IGTV app or the web
  • Videos on IGTV can also be uploaded to Facebook Watch
  • File size: up to 3.6GB
  • File type: .MP4
  • Video size: 9:16
  • Video thumbnail / cover image: .JPG
  • As of launch, no advertising options are available, but Instagram says it eventually plans to make sure popular video creators are able to make money from their efforts

What should you do as you think about how Instagram TV can help your business?

  1. Consider your user/handle name- As you think about how you are building your brand long term, you want something that is memorable and shareable as a brand name that relates to the video content you are going to put out on IGTV. If you are a do it yourself type person and your videos are going to be how to instructional, then you might want to consider having a DIY somewhere in your overall username.
  2. Behind The Scenes- People love to know what is happening behind the scenes because it draws on this idea of being aspirational. By that comment, I mean you feel like you are part of an exclusive club getting the "in the know" information which makes you want to watch these videos even more. You may want to think about how that can be integrated into what you are currently doing or if you are just activating an account think about how you would curate that with your videos.
  3. Q & A- People love the Q and A type videos because they get to hear directly from the source. You might want to set this up where someone asks you questions that your viewers are most frequently asking, and this allows them to gather information and knowledge being a part of your video channel.
  4. Unpolished Is Better- Not to piss off all the professional video companies out there, but because Instagram has a younger following overall they prefer unpolished videos over something that looks like it took three days to shoot. This is best directed at the professional services companies who worry about their 'image' on video. Instagram users are used to videos that look like someone was doing a hold my phone in front of my face type video.
  5. Consider What Type Of Following You Want- We don't always consider the long-term consequences of the videos we put out on the internet but begin asking yourself the questions about what you want out of IGTV. Is this a branding play? What do you want followers to recognize you for when they get used to watching your videos? Are you going to drive leads? All questions that are important as you build out your channel.

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