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Step aside YouTube – IGTV is here!

IGTV on phone

Video content is all the rage, there’s no doubt about it, but not everyone has five grand to throw at creating slick video content for their business. Last week, Instagram announced the new kid on the block. You know, the kid everyone wants to be friends with.

Instagram’s new arrival is IGTV – an app that allows you to upload and watch long-form videos. These videos can be posted by anyone, from businesses, to your bestie, influencers, celebs, or any average Joe. And your salon, spa or barber business can totally leverage its power.

YouTube has served us well since its launch in 2005, but the other social media giants want in on the world-wide fandom for video content. Both Instagram and Facebook have dabbled in live streaming and quick videos with their Stories features. Snapchat is on the same wagon too, but none of these platforms are really in the same realm as YouTube. Until now.

So what’s the goss about this pot of gold at the end of the Instagram rainbow?

It’s sort of an app, but sort of not

IGTV can be accessed from your Instagram account, where it hangs out right next to your direct messages, and directly from the IGTV app. This dynamic duo make great partners, but they also work separately.

Both apps essentially do exactly the same thing and you can create an IGTV channel in both. The IGTV app has a few more settings that may come in handy for you, like switching accounts or reporting a problem.

It’s for everyone

Sure, IGTV is suitable for super-polished, professionally-filmed video, but it’s also perfect for authentic, raw content shot right on your smart phone. This is especially great for smaller spas, salons or barber businesses who don’t have a huge video budget.

Techcrunch noted that the whole idea behind IGTV is to let talented creators or business owners, who already have large Instagram audiences and a flair for rave-worthy content, set the benchmark for what IGTV is and will be.

IGTV is built up of channels and everyone (except new or smaller accounts for the time being) will be able to upload hour-long videos – which means you have a great opportunity to create more meaningful content for your audience and spend more virtual time with them.

It’s designed for vertical video

Just like your Insta Stories, IGTV is designed for videos to be uploaded and watched vertically – the same way you use your phone. We get what they’re trying to do, but the vertical format also means that you have yet another ratio to film your content in, if Instagram’s square feed wasn’t already enough. But hey, it does make sense for a predominantly mobile-only platform. You win some, you lose some.

It’s got all important metrics

As a business, you’ll of course want to know how your IGTV videos are performing. IGTV comes equipped with a range of basic metrics to help you determine which content is a hit or miss. Just like IG Stories, you simply click “view insights” to check out your analytics.

It gives you a breakdown of engagement in the form of likes, views, and comments. The audience retention rate is probably the stat we’re most excited about though. Since IG Stories are really only for minute long videos, their retention stats aren’t that helpful. However, IGTV shows you a detailed graph of the average percentage watched by your audience so you can gauge how interested and engaged your viewers really are in your videos.

Want to know more? Instagram dished up all the juicy details for you here.

Caitlin Adamson

Caitlin Adamson is a passionate creative and analytical thinker who brings her love for the written word to the marketing world. She brings her fresh outlook to the Shortcuts team and strives to create strategic and engaging collateral to help salons, spas, clinics and barbers to tackle their business endeavours with confidence.