Unless you live under a rock (no offense, Patrick Star), you have most likely heard of the unveiling of Instagram TV. In case you happen to live under a rock (which is totally fine, I am not here to judge), allow me to fill you in. On June 20th, 2018, Instagram unveiled a feature and standalone app for vertical, long-form content. These “episodes” can be anywhere from 15 seconds long to 60 minutes long. Initially, only certain influencers were allowed to create on IGTV, but they have since changed that, allowing anyone to create content via this stream.
Now that you are all filled in, let’s go more in-depth and explore the good, the bad, and the ugly of IGTV (actually, I only have the good and the bad. I just wanted to throw in a cool little dramatic saying).
The Best of IGTV
It’s no secret that people are comparing the rise of IGTV to YouTube and with good reason. IGTV is already discussing monetization which of course, is what a lot of people wanted to know. Here are a few great features Instagram TV has to offer currently:
The obvious being there is a new outlet for both current creators and those who want to pursue content creation. Whenever new platforms come out, we tend to see the rise of influencers who have had success on the platform. For current influencers/creators, this is simply another way to reach your audience and perhaps share content you wouldn’t share elsewhere.
Monetization- this is a big one. Let’s face it, we all want to make money on social media. It’s become a business and we all want a piece of it. There is talk on monetizing content created on IGTV and I really don’t need to explain why this is such a good thing.
Minimal censorship– remember the days when you could go on YouTube and watch your favorite creators speak how they speak and just be who they truly are? Ah, good times. YouTube has put HEFTY restrictions on what people can say or do and go as far as to age restrict and demonetize content they do not find “appropriate” for their standards. This leaves creators frustrated and makes them feel as if they are walking on eggshells. Of course, censorship is necessary for weening out content that is disturbing, graphic, and illegal, but it shouldn’t go as far as to take from those who swear or have mature content. So far, IGTV has not stated anything regarding extreme censorship. In turn, creators will flock here to share the content they know will be hindered on YouTube.
Budget-Friendly- I have seen many potential creators shy away from bigger video sharing platforms simply due to the fact that they lack the equipment needed to shoot and edit something that would adhere to higher standards which we see on sites like YouTube. You don’t need a $3,000 camera and a crazy set-up for IGTV. Everyone will be using the same device- a smartphone.
Content-Oriented- Piggybacking on my last point, another reason potential creators shy away from sites such as YouTube is due to the fact that they lack the skill required to create content that holds up to the standards seen on the site. While you can edit and export content to IGTV, most footage is going to be raw and unedited. This puts a focus more on the content itself as opposed to the glitz and glam of post-production
The Worst of IGTV
Like any other platform, IGTV does have it’s weak spots. Of course, we have to keep in mind it was JUST unveiled so we can’t be too harsh on them! Here are a few things that IGTV falls flat on:
Inability to tag brands/people- a great feature that was released to IG Stories is the ability to tag brands and individuals in our stories. It has proven to be a great way to increase personal visibility in the eyes of an individual or brand. This has not been made available to IGTV yet.
Once it’s up, it’s up- With IGTV currently, you are unable to go back and make edits after the video is posted. While this may not be a big deal to some, it can cause frustration for those who are keen on ensuring everything is done perfectly. This just calls for a little more care when reviewing content prior to posting.
Getting used to vertical- We are so used to a world where videos are horizontal and vertical content is just grotesque. While I have no qualms with vertical content on IGTV since I view a lot of content vertically on my iPhone, it will take some getting used to. There will still be a large number of people who despise vertical content.