The rise in the popularity of Stories – the short social videos and photos that users share for 24 hours – means there's no hiding from vertical video.
Audiences now want content on demand wherever they are, and to be in control of the narrative, determining how much, and indeed what, they see.
Recognising this, Instagram launched its new feature, IGTV, last week (20 June), a new app for long-form, vertical video.
In contrast to Instagram, where individual posts within a Story can only last up to 15 seconds long, IGTV enables publishers to post videos of up to an hour.
For audiences, it's like watching television, but within a platform built for how they actually use their phone – vertically. They are able to browse videos uploaded by those they are already following on Instagram, videos recommended to them or the most popular on the app.
For content creators, it's as if they have their own channel – and there's nothing to stop them posting full-length documentaries or programmes on there – just as long as they're edited for vertical viewing, of course.
While there is a stand-alone app, audiences can watch IGTV content from within Instagram itself, which means if you were to get started, all users of the platform can access your long-form material straight away.
So, how do you upload your content?
Either download the stand-alone IGTV app or tap on the coloured logo on the top-right of your Instagram app.
You'll see the home screen open, and automatically start playing a video from a channel you are following. It is here you can scroll through the different videos available, swiping through the categories 'For You', 'Following', 'Popular' and 'Continue Watching'.
Tap the cog item to create your channel. You'll now be logged into your channel, still on the homepage.
Tap your channel's icon on the right-hand side, then the plus icon. You'll get to choose a video from your camera roll to add – simply pick it, add a title and description, and post.
You can also choose to post the video on your linked Facebook account.
Five years ago today, we introduced the ability to post videos on Instagram. Today, an exciting new chapter of video begins with IGTV, our new app for watching long-form, vertical video from your favorite Instagram creators. 🎉— IGTV - Instagram Television (@IGTelevision) June 24, 2018
Update your app to watch IGTV now! pic.twitter.com/VprPdBjep1
Wondering what you can post? Well, even if you're not a broadcast publisher producing long-form content, there's still room for you on IGTV.
Why not use the platform to show a behind-the-scenes look into your organisation? How about teaser videos for upcoming issues you'll be investigating? Or maybe you'd like to hold panel discussions or Q&A's, following engagement from your audience. You can experiment with anything from silly one-offs to interviews with influencers.
Will you repurpose content otherwise used for Instagram Stories, or will you create entirely new content for the channel?
Let us know @journalismnews how your news organisation is using IGTV – we'd love to hear your experiences with vertical video, and any innovative formats, workflows or projects you're working on.
Do you want to master the art of Instagram? Join us at the Instagram training course with a former BBC journalist Sue Llewellin.
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