To be honest, when we first heard about IGTV, we kind of freaked out. As filmmakers, we want to use any and every platform that could potentially be advantageous to our clients. While video is king, distribution is key. We love Instagram, and as creative entrepreneurs it has always been our favorite platform, even more than YouTube or Vimeo. BUT we were always limited by the 60 second upload limit and the weird compression that tends to kill the crystal clear quality of our films. Now, though, with the ability to share long-form native content, it feels like everything is changing in an amazing new direction!
In what is likely Instagram’s biggest announcement since its founding in 2010, the news of IGTV has taken the online world by storm. While IGers have grown familiar with viewing + creating their own vertical videos for Instagram Stories, the ability to now have up to 60 minutes of 4K UHD video content on both a new standalone app as well as through the world’s second most popular social media platform* is a really big deal.
Just like on TV, videos on IGTV will start playing as soon as you open the app (after some static appears while the content loads). Once one video ends, the next will automatically begin. You access different videos by searching for user’s channels.
However, unlike TV and unlike YouTube and Facebook, which have long been video leaders just by sheer volume of users and overall engagement, IGTV’s native format is mobile-conscious first, which means vertical videos in the 9:16 aspect ratio. And as 75% of worldwide video viewing is mobile*, it’s about time, to be frank!
And although there are plenty of naysayers regarding the vertical format here in the early stages of IGTV, just consider how you use your phone! Chances are, you’re reading this blog on your phone with Portrait Lock on (shoutout to iPhone users lol). So you’re holding your phone vertically for 99% of things. In fact, you probably found this blog through Instagram…which you were scrolling through vertically. With video soon to represent 82% of global internet traffic by 2021*, this adaptation to the inherent orientation of not only Instagram, but of our mobile devices (smart phones and tablets) only makes practical sense. Having said all of the above, it will be very interesting to see if 9:16 vertical video is just a trend, but for now it seems like it might just be here to stay and influence video creator’s final work!
One of the greatest things about IGTV is its accessibility. Its vertical format means any videos you film on your phone are already formatted correctly in a 9:16 ratio, as mentioned above. All you need to do is download the free app, create a channel (which automatically links to your current IG account), and start uploading your content. IGTV will also be accessible through the homescreen on Instagram, and your followers will also be able to access your channel through clicking your Instagram bio. This applies for phone AND computer users!!
Although IGTV is its own app, it is not an entirely new platform. This means that your ideal clients, which you likely already engage with via your IG, will already be on it, ready and eager to receive your sweet content the same way they do on Instagram.
Similar to Instagram posts, followers will be able to like, comment on, and share your IGTV videos. We’re so excited about the comment feature because unlike IG Stories, which requires you to DM people to engage in conversation, IGTV feels much more casual and easier to drop a comment (sliding in people’s DMs can be nerve-wracking).
Another feature that is SUPER promising for small business owners is that web links within the IGTV captions actually work! Gone are the days of #linkinbio and crossing your fingers hoping your followers will go to your bio (shoutout to Linktree tho) and follow links off the platform and onto your website. The medium is the message, and too much clicking means too much work, and therefore a loss of intent interest. So this completely changes the game when it comes to marketing your brand and directing your potential clients where you actually want them to go, in a more convenient, coherent way.
Speaking of marketing your brand, while accessibility is a major factor and we love the fact that anyone with a smartphone can make use of IGTV, we can not overstate the importance that high-quality, professional videos will have in terms of IGTV’s marketing possibilities. Especially with videos becoming more and more prominent, it’s going to be vital to not only have videos but to have videos that stand out. Sure, you could record yourself in the native upright cell phone video and quickly upload it to your IGTV…but that’s not special and that’s not a way to stand out.
As creative storytellers, Cinema Jubilee prides ourselves on not only our cinematic films, but the care and attention we pour into the pre-production of our clients’ films–clarifying the intention, narrowing the focus, and crafting the specific story, or set of stories, that will connect your brand to your ideal clients and in turn get you more sales. With video, less is NOT more…indeed, the Rule of Seven holds true here. That is, traditionally people need to see or engage with your marketing message(s) at least seven times before they’ll actually act and decide to buy.
With IGTV, you can get your tribe to really love what you do, fully understand it, and want to invest in your business because the more slick films they consume, the more trust they’ll have in your brand. At that point, they’ll fully realize how seriously you take you’re branding, and they’ll know what you offer the world is worth every penny. We truly believe that all the best things in life are about the long term, not the short term.
While the IGTV app is still rolling out and being experimented with, we are hopeful that by being early adopters we, and you, will have beach-front property, so to speak. Just like in your feed, Instagram’s algorithm will dictate which videos play first, and because Instagram obviously wants IGTV to gain popularity, IG will likely promote the early adopters ahead of others, so there’s no better time to dive in than now! Also, although there are no ads in IGTV right now, we’d be willing to bet on 15-30 second spots coming soon. Remember when Facebook videos would play uninterrupted? Feels like a while ago at this point. IGTV will likely be no different. Familiarizing yourself with the platform now, ahead of your competitors, and understanding how it can benefit your brand will be key in effectively increasing engagement with your potential clients now and in the future, and asserting your presence as an authority in your respective industry.
Now, as you can probably tell, we’re super excited about IGTV + we want to help our clients get on board with it, get seen, and really taking advantage of these new benefits. Social media has so much potential for scaling businesses, but at this point in 2018, the old platforms (Facebook, YouTube, Instagram itself) are not necessarily revolutionizing how we engage with the world. So IGTV is a fresh start, and there’s no pressure to be the best, or to be perfect on your channel; but there is a ton of opportunity.
As such, we’re offering COMPLIMENTARY IGTV versions of your films when you book us for your commercial storytelling needs by July 20th!! Whether it’s a brand film to introduce yourselves to your ideal audience, or a slick promo film highlighting a specific product or service you are pushing, we’d love to help you get high-quality content out to the people who need what you offer.
And be sure to ask us about our video collections–where you get various, multi-lengthed social media-friendly films from a single session of filmmaking! This essentially creates reusable, multi-purpose branded content you’re able to use in different ways, on separate platforms, slowly over time (remember the Rule of Seven), allowing for more chances for more eyes to enjoy your brand’s entertaining campaign. In our increasingly hyper-digital online landscape, ROI is now measured in seconds–and it’s rewarded in equal measure. Can you afford to fall behind your competition?
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