There has been a major IGTV update. Instagram is now starting to share ad revenue with content creators. Heres everything you need to know about IGTV’s monetisation and how to get the most from the feature.
For over a year, Instagram hinted they would allow IGTV video creators to earn money through ad revenue. Last Wednesday, The Verge finally confirmed an update. Ads will now start popping up in IGTV videos for around 200 approved, English-speaking creator partners and select advertising partners, like Ikea and Sephora.
The monetisation of IGTV has begun. Instagram will be sharing an ‘industry standard’ 55% cut with this selected few, with a goal to expand this group of 200 to more creators around the globe.
IGTV ads will begin to play when viewers click to watch a video from an in-feed preview. They’ll be vertical and up to 15 seconds long, but developers will be working on a ‘skip ad’ feature throughout the year. Creators who wish to have their IGTV videos monetised will also need to strictly follow Instagram’s monetisation policy.
Keen to start earning through IGTV? Then it’s time to brush up on all the dos and don’ts of creating for IGTV.
Do get familiar with Instagram’s content monetisation policies
Before shooting your next IGTV, first understand what you can and can’t upload to the platform. If you want your videos to eventually be monetised, check out IG’s policies here. Things such as nudity, profanity or gory scenes are examples of ‘restricted’ content. If present in your IGTV, the video may face reduced or restricted monetisation.
Don’t be inauthentic
When using IGTV to chat about your favourite products, be sure you aren’t making any false claims or providing misleading information to your audience. Not only will that harm your videos chances of being monetised, your audience won’t appreciate or tolerate being told misinformation.
Do provide a sneaky preview
When uploading an IGTV video you are given the option to “post a preview”. We highly recommend always ticking that box so your video will preview in your audience’s feeds. This may help increase your IGTV’s engagement, reach, impressions and views, as more people are likely to discover your video while scrolling through their home feed.
Don’t forget about your thumbnail
Thumbnails, also known as cover photos, are such an important feature that allows you to put your best foot forward when sharing any IGTV video.
Its the snapshot image your viewers will see before they decide to watch your creation. Make it a good one, as this can’t be edited once your IGTV is live. Ensure the image has great lighting, colours and is interesting enough to entice users to watch.
Do cater to the silent viewers
Sometimes when users are scrolling through their Instagram feed they’re in a quiet location, like in a waiting room or on public transport. Catering to these silent viewers may help increase your video views.
Add suitable subtitles to your IGTV’s so that if viewers are in an environment where they don’t want to be playing something out loud – and have forgotten their headphones – they can still watch and understand what is happening in your video.
Don’t forget your specs
When uploading an IGTV, follow these specs to ensure your video is compatible with the platform:
- Use an MP4 file format.
- The length of your video must be at least 1 minute to be posted as an IGTV.
- When uploading from the mobile app, the maximum length your video can be is 15 minutes and 1 hour if uploading from the web.
- The minimum resolution your IGTV can be is 720 pixels.
- The maximum file size for 10 minute videos or under is 650MB and videos for up to 60 minutes long can be up to 3.6GB.
- The vertical aspect ratio for IGTV videos is 9:16 and 16:9 for horizontal videos.
Do persuade followers to “Keep watching”
First impressions last, especially for videos. If you want viewers to click that, “Keep watching” button on your IGTV preview, you want to make sure that impression is a good one. The first 15 seconds of your video are vital. You want to hook your audience in, not let them lose interest and continue to scroll.
These are the two things you want your audience to know straight away: What is this video about? And why should you keep watching? I.e. “Heres how I edit my Instagram photos, with tips on using Photoshop if you’re a beginner.”
Don’t forget about hashtags
Amplify your IGTV by using relevant hashtags in your description. This will help non-followers to discover your video and reach more engaged profiles. Keep your hashtags super specific and non-spammy. For example, if your video is a tutorial on how to use Photoshop, use #PhotoshopTutorial rather than just #Tutorial.
Help! I want to make an IGTV but have no clue what to film
If you’re someone wanting to use this platform but have no idea where to start, go for something that’s authentic to you and what you think your audience will enjoy. Some ideas could include:
#1 Behind the scenes. Film how you shoot your content or edit your videos. This could also inspire a tutorial type IGTV.
#2 Film a Q&A with questions submitted by your audience. Using the question sticker on a story is a simple way for your followers to drop a Q.
#3 Creating how-to videos that are relevant to your audience. Fashion styling, flatlay styling or home styling, whatever your niche is, use your platform to help teach your audience your tips and tricks.
#4 Use IGTV as a platform to review your favourite things. That could be a cafe, movie, book, skin care product or even the latest PS4 game if you’re a gamer! Your audience follows you because they value your opinion. Use this long-form video platform to inspire them.
#5 Become a talk show host and chat with other creators as guest speakers. Talk about a topic that would benefit your audience like how did we both get into influencer marketing? Or how do we both juggle our everyday jobs with our side hustles?