IGTV: everything about the tool

The article has been updated. First published 18 September 2019

How to use and what content to publish

TV on Instagram? Not really, but the principle is similar! We understand the intricacies of working with IGTV: how to use, what to download, and what content is suitable for business.

Many SMM men used to be indignant about why the duration of the video in the feed was at most a minute. For many, such a time requirement seemed inconvenient.

Over time, the social network still heard the requests of users and decided to create its own video hosting – IGTV.

IGTV allows you to watch and download videos from a minute to an hour. Video hosting exists both on Instagram itself and in a separate application created for it.

How to use IGTV

Users have a choice of where it is more convenient to watch videos on IGTV: in an application that is available for iPhones and Androids, or in the social network itself. The IGTV icon is located in the upper right corner of the Instagram feed.

If you want to find a video of a certain author, go to the desired profile. If the user’s video is uploaded to IGTV, then a similar section will automatically appear in the account.

Section IGTV appears automatically in the account if the user has uploaded a video to his channel

If you go to IGTV, the recommended videos will automatically open. You can choose an interesting video or enter the required account in the search.

Previously, 4 categories were available in the function and in the application: For You, Subscriptions, Popular and History. Now Instagram has removed these tabs, and videos are selected based on an analysis of your content preferences.

On IGTV, videos in the feed are tailored to your interests
On IGTV, videos in the feed are tailored to your interests

Similar to YouTube, on IGTV, users who post videos have their own channels. This is convenient for content creators to offer subscribers to view the uploaded videos, to see which video format aroused more interest from your audience.

To increase video views and increase reach, Instagram offers to preview the video in the post feed. Users will have access to 15 seconds from the beginning of the video.

If the user wants to watch the video, then he can click on the button “Watch full IGTV video”, which is located at the bottom of the publication.

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Video preview is available in your account
A video preview is available in your account, you can continue on IGTV

Interaction with the audience is available on IGTV – every user can comment, like and share videos with friends.

IGTV video requirements

Instagram asks you to follow 8 rules when uploading videos to IGTV:

  1. Minimum time… One of the main requirements is that the video must last at least a minute. No matter how cool a video you have, the social network will not allow you to download it if it is too short.
  2. Duration… The length of time depends on the device from which you put the video. If from a mobile, then the maximum video duration will be 15 minutes. And if from a computer – an hour.
  3. Video file type… The video must be in MP4 format.
  4. Video format… You don’t have to upload only vertical videos on IGTV. But you need to consider the following parameters: for horizontal videos, the aspect ratio should be 16: 9, and for vertical videos – 9:16.
  5. Frame frequency… The minimum is 30 frames per second. Resolution is not less than 720 pixels.
  6. file size… If the video is less than 10 minutes long, the maximum size should be 650 MB. And if the video is 60 minutes long, then the size should not be more than 3.6 GB.
  7. Cover size… Want to put a cover on your video? Please note that the recommended photo size is 420 x 654 pixels (jpg format). And remember that Instagram does not yet have the ability to edit the cover photo after uploading.
  8. Compliance… And, of course, Instagram asks to comply with community norms so that offensive video deletions and account blocking do not happen.

How to upload videos to IGTV

Videos can be displayed not only from a mobile device, but also from a computer, as well as from postponed posting.

To upload a video from your phone to IGTV you need:

  1. First, go to the Instagram app or IGTV.
  2. Tap “+”, select a video and tap “Next”.
  3. You can choose a cover for the video from the video itself, or insert a picture by clicking on “Add from Film” for iPhone or “Add from Gallery” for Android. Then click “Next”.
  4. Provide video title and description.
  5. Configure parameters. You can add a preview, share the video on Facebook, and edit your profile cover.
  6. And that’s all, it remains only to publish.
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You have the ability to download videos from your computer via your browser:

  1. Go to the Instagram website.
  2. Log into your account and click on the IGTV icon in your profile.
  3. Click on the “Download” button.
  4. Drag and drop the video by clicking on the “+”
  5. Upload a cover, add a title and description
  6. You can also customize the video preview just like in the app.
  7. You have the option to save your IGTV draft or publish right away.

This is all good, but there are situations when you don’t want to mess with posting to IGTV from your phone or computer. Then the easiest way is to put the video into a delayed posting and not worry.

You can schedule IGTV videos using SMMplanner. You can put videos up to 6 minutes long and 100 MB in size, you can also upload a cover, insert a title and configure all the required parameters.

IGTV content ideas

For IGTV, not only technical requirements are important, but also ideas. Nobody will watch boring content. I looked at what types of videos go to IGTV – maybe one or more of these headings are suitable for your project.

Tutorials

People are interested in the answer to the question “How?” How to do it, how to set it up, how to use it, and so on. These can be specific videos with step-by-step analysis and explanations, or simple videos to music, where the master explains the device of the technique.

You can create videos about your brand’s products or services, experiment with genres and themes.

For example, the L’Etoile brand made a seemingly inappropriate video on the subject of the company – a fitness lesson. But the video was liked by many users and collected more than 10,000 views.

Fitness lesson on IGTV
IGTV Fitness Lesson: An Example of Useful Feed Content

Interview

Users are curious to watch someone else’s reaction, emotions, history, which is why interviews are so popular. Moreover, interviews can be conducted not only with experts.

It will be interesting if the company asks customers questions about a product or service, informally, without censorship, giving them the opportunity to answer exactly the way they want.

Interviews are good for IGTV
Interviews are good for IGTV: with both experts and users

Funny videos

What will the audience always be interested in? Of course, funny videos! It can be anything: reactions, sketches, pranks. Give them this attitude.

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Funny videos can be associated with your products. For example, let’s say you sell fruit juice. You can capture the reaction of people who guess with their eyes closed which juice they just tasted.

Another example: BuzzFeed recently filmed a video in which he asked people who want to compare which pizza tastes better – expensive or cheap. Take examples from major brands and embed in your content.

Funny videos rule IGTV
Funny videos rule IGTV: get ready to create pranks, sketches and reactions for your channel

Unique content

Come up with a unique heading that will relate to your business. There are no restrictions here: publish hour-long videos on various topics once a week, create your own fictional series – whatever.

It is important that the content is really high-quality and interesting for the audience, and also indirectly reflects your brand, its ideas and values.

I can cite a successful Russian example of unique content on IGTV. S7 Airlines has come up with a funny mini-series for … aliens. In the series, aliens are introduced to our planet, talking about life values ​​and important concepts for earthlings, for example, love.

The airline created the series and uploaded it to Instagram
The airline has created a series and uploaded it to Instagram: you can create unique video content too

Leah Canary, SMM specialist:

Just like the Stories section, IGTV is a relatively fresh Instagram feature, so for more coverage and attention of algorithms, I recommend that you implement this tool as often as possible in your work on promoting your account. Always keep in mind that the video cover is cropped at the top in the preview. This aspect of the format should be taken into account by your designers when creating covers for video clips. Also, remember that low-quality videos in a post cannot be promoted through targeted ads.

Since 2020, you can add live recordings to the IGTV section. And this is a very useful update. There is no need to look for the option to download and upload videos for a section separately. Conveniently! Therefore, record joint broadcasts, share your videos with subscribers, conduct live broadcasts, monitor statistics and the relevance of information, use the capabilities of the social network to the maximum – success will not keep you waiting.

Let’s summarize

Working with IGTV is not as difficult as it might seem at first. The most important thing is not to ignore the requirements of the social network, then there will be no problems with downloading.

SMMplanner has the ability to download videos from a computer through a delayed posting service, which cuts down all the difficult moments at times, and it becomes very convenient to work with IGTV.

You need to experiment with the content and look at the audience’s response. This is the plus of IGTV as a tool. Try rubrics, look for something of your own. And you will definitely succeed!

Register now in SMMplanner and schedule posts on Instagram and Instagram Stories.

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