IGTV video and how brands can use it

Written by HannahM: Junior Digital Designer.
· 4 minute read

If you are known to find yourself scrolling through Instagram, we anticipate you may have come across IGTV. No idea what I’m talking about? Then where have you been? Released in June 2018, this feature has had time to make its standing in the social media world. 

Since Instagram was acquired by social media giant Facebook in 2012, Instagram hasn’t stood still. 

They first started with keeping Snapchat on its toes, by incorporating Snapchat’s ‘stories’ feature, as well as an explore page. Now with the addition of up to hour-long videos, they are trying to steal the limelight from the video giant YouTube, hard and fast. 

So why have they done this? Well it might have something to do with that by 2021, mobile video will account for 78% of total mobile data traffic, and Instagram is betting big on mobile video with the launch of IGTV.

What is IGTV?

Instagram’s answer to Youtube is the new IGTV (Instagram TV) platform which is now on the scene; designed to work in tandem with Instagram or standalone as its own app. It is designed for mobile-optimised viewing of long-form content videos. Some accounts can upload up to an hour of video content if they have enough followers, but most are capped depending on account verification and followers. 

The videos a user sees depends on the accounts you are following or if you explore trending IGTV videos. Users can like or comment on videos like you would a normal Instagram post. IGTV also lets you upload your own videos through the web browser or app. A feature which is growing in popularity for influencers and bloggers. Giving them the flexibility to step away from Youtube and the recording, editing and uploading. They might decide to switch to IGTV for good and utilise the savvy method of straight forward filming and adding to their channel.

How are brands using IGTV in campaigns?

For businesses, whatever the size, IGTV presents a unique way to market their brand. The fact that it isn’t as big as YouTube yet can actually help businesses that establish themselves relatively early. Especially by sending influencers your products or letting them use your service and posting to their IGTV channel. 

Many influencers are now posting videos to IGTV of unboxing products and how-to videos which would normally be done on Youtube, whilst juggling Instagram. Now IGTV has arrived, everything is in one place, saving time and effort. 

When this feature first came available, brands were relatively slow to adopt it for a number of reasons, mostly for financial reasons to produce new portrait long-form videos. But since this year IGTV is now no longer just for vertical videos too, it supports both! Instagram says the change comes because of creator feedback. As having a video landscape does have its weaknesses but it also has many strengths. For example, it’s easier when watching sports as it gets more people in the frame.

They made another massive development early this year that pushed the feature of one-minute previews for the feed which will then take the user to the IGTV channel. 

Now many big brands like the BBC, Nike and Netflix have already dived in headfirst with the easy to use long-form video channel with substantial success. National Geographic is one of Instagram biggest brands with over 120 million followers. It was the first to create a 48-minute long educational documentary in vertical format exclusively for its top IGTV channel. This brand regularly uses this new feature to educate users without having to make them flip to another platform like Youtube. 

On the other side of that other companies use it to promote funny and relatable content like Buzzfeed, to encourage users to their channel. 

The best part about IGTV is it is currently ad-free. Making viewing videos a lot easier for the user and some may even prefer it over Youtube for this reason. So get started on your brands IGTV as soon as possible if you haven’t already.

Why your business needs to utilise IGTV

Boost product and service visibility 

IGTV offers opportunities to generate additional user traffic and therefore boosting the visibility of your products and services. Online video viewership is increasing at an alarming rate. A study of young adults found they spent one hour and four minutes dedicated to YouTube a day. Meaning people are willing to watch long video clips if it’s engaging enough. 


Video marketing has been considered the king of engagement and an effective method to boost conversions. The more creative and compelling content the better chance of engagement. IGTV also features clickable links to your landing pages, win, win. 


Trends are constantly changing, videos used to be on average 3 minutes long, however, long-form videos are taking over. Which is good news for brands willing to get into creating videos! Longer videos provide more opportunities for building relations and connections with your community. 

Get creative

If you plan on uploading your own content, make sure it’s something your following will engage with. Create content that shares a message or looks at a trending topic in a different light. Studies have shown that tutorial and demonstration videos are among the most popular types of video content. 

Tip: Make sure to share a one minute preview of your video to your Instagram Feed (and profile) to increase views and engagement. Viewers can tap keep watching to continue watching the full video.

So watch out Youtube because IGTV is here. With video becoming an increasingly important skill in social media marketing, now with the launch of IGTV, as well as the new updates incorporating landscape and portrait videos, Instagram are well on the way to becoming a force to be wreaked with. 

If you want to know more about social media and video marketing, get in touch today.