By: Amen Sharma / July 16, 2018

IGTV: Instagram’s New Platform For Video

IGTV is a new platform both available as a separate app or within Instagram once you update it.  You can create, share and watch long-form videos to rival with Youtube.

IGTV: What is it?

This new platform is Instagrams way of changing the traditional TV experience and making it accessible and enjoyable for a modern, mobile experience.

Youtube arguable has excelled in popularity over the years and because of this, the amount of time young people spend watching TV has decreased by 40%.  With influencers usually having a popular Instagram and Youtube channel, IGTV is a logical step to bring their content to one app only.

By 2021, it is estimated that 78% of all mobile data traffic will be from mobile video, and Instagram is only going to solidify this with IGTV.

Anyone on Instagram can create their own channel where they can share long-form videos with their followers.  Currently, videos can be 10 minutes long for the majority of accounts and up to one hour long for accounts with a larger following.   However, Instagram eventually hopes to have no time restrictions at all on these videos.

Unlike Youtube, IGTV is made up of all vertical videos, which for a mobile platform, makes perfect sense!  It makes it more approachable as Instagram has created their own story with a tutorial on how to use IGTV which appears when you update the app!

IGTV videos can be watched in the app, in the separate IGTV app or by clicking the IGTV button in someone’s profile.  You will also be notified when someone you follow posts a new video to the platform.

You can watch trending videos but Instagram will also suggest videos based on who you follow and what posts you’re interested in.  You will also be able to share these videos with your friends through Instagram Direct.

Another way it is set to rival Youtube is that IGTV doesn’t contain any ads, for now anyway! The main focus is currently to get users to engage with the app but that is not to say it will always stay add free, ads will create a way for users of IGTV to make a living so it hasn’t been ruled out.

The 3 Main Things That Make IGTV Unique

Vertical videos

Vertical videos are there to accommodate to a mobile-friendly experience, horizontal videos can be made, but they turn out the same way vertical videos would on Youtube.   Vertical videos are better for mobile users who don’t have to rotate their phone to watch especially as many keep their device locked on ‘portrait’ mode.

The use of vertical videos is also there as it makes it easier for non-professional video creators to use the platform as it feels easy to just pick up the phone and start recording more naturally.

The only problem is, for people who create videos to be used on multiple platforms, they will either have to film the video on multiple devices to get a horizontal version or ensure their original video has the ability to be cropped vertically without cutting anything important out from the background.

IGTV Is Like Youtube

The goal of IGTV is to be a video sharing platform for creators, and whilst videos of up to one hour can be created and with the intention of even longer videos being available in the future, it is not for TV shows.

They don’t necessarily want the videos to be completely polished and edited to perfection like a TV show, they want to show that real people can use it and not be experts in video editing to do so.

It Will Be Your New Favourite Mobile Experience

The experience is a lot like turning on a regular TV.  The app is set to start playing a video, just like a TV would, as soon as you open the app.  Users also have the opportunity to interact and comment on videos just as they would be able to if watching a video on Facebook.

If you get bored of watching a video, you can just swipe to the side and move on to the next, similar but even easier than changing the channel on the TV!

There are currently three categories on IGTV:

  • For You– Videos curated by Instagram based on what you like from people you follow.
  • Following– A collection of videos from all the people on Instagram that you’re already following.
  • Popular– All the trending videos on IGTV, ranked by popularity.

There is also a search bar if you know what you’re looking for!

How To Create An IGTV Channel-(in two easy steps)


  • Sign in to the IGTV app


  • Click on the settings icon– click “create a channel”

How To Upload Videos




  • Go to your new channel– do this by clicking on your avatar from the main page, it will say “view your channel”


  • Click the “+” icon– this will let you add a new video


  • Select a vertical video– choose one from your camera roll
  • Title and caption– Enter any relevant keywords in your description to make it easier for people to find on IGTV and add a suitable title.  You can also include links in your description.
  • Cover photo– add a custom cover photo, or choose a thumbnail from within your video.  Whatever you choose will show up on your channel page and in IGTV’s categories.
  • Post it– click post and you’re all done!




Once posted you can view your IGTV analytics to see your views, likes and comments and also delete the video if you want to.

Facts and Tips

  • IGTV supports 4k vertical videos.  They must be at least 15 seconds long and can run up to 10 minutes or up to 60 minutes depending on your account.  The videos are the same size as Instagram Stories.
  • A “view” on IGTV is the same as videos uploaded to Instagram as a post, anyone who watches over 3 seconds of the video will count as a view.
  • To watch videos, you must click on the IGTV icon at the top of your feed in the Instagram app or you can download the standalone IGTV app.  You may have to update your Instagram to see IGTV.
  • You can only have one IGTV channel per Instagram account.

Do you think IGTV will takeover Youtube? Would you feel more confident uploading to IGTV instead of Youtube? Let us know in the comments! Do you or your business require support in growing your Instagram? Contact our team at HeartCMS to get more information on our online marketing products and services.

About Amen Sharma

Director of and author of UK's bestselling online marketing book 'The Google Checklist'. Amen loves to help small to medium size businesses get more online exposure. Amen started his online marketing journey back in 2006 and now runs his own award winning marketing agency.

Latest from the blog

Smartphone Photography - Web Design Nottingham

January 31, 2020

5 Ways to Improve Your Smartphone Photography

Photography is a key component of running any business. Your customer wants to see everything from your behind the scenes to your products, but capturing them in their best light can be a struggle when you’re first starting out. The good news is, you don’t need to spend thousands of pounds on the latest camera […]

How Instagram Algorithm Works HeartCMS

September 17, 2018

How The Instagram Algorithm Works

Earlier this year, Instagram announced that they would be updating the algorithm to make it appear more chronological. In the past few days, Instagram has announced how they organise our feeds. We know, Instagram can be crucial for your business, so knowing how the algorithm works could do wonders for your social media marketing. Your […]

Hashtags for SEO

September 11, 2018

Utilising Hashtags For SEO

The growing age of social media has seen vast improvements in how we can utilise it for businesses. This can be anything from the theme of your bio, stories and highlights on Instagram, to backlinks on Facebook and YouTube. But something you may be missing is mastering hashtags for SEO. An Instagram post with at […]