IGTV: Go Vertical!
Instagram’s new IGTV isn’t just a new button on Instagram. It is a phenomenon. It's going to change the communication world, make us reconsider the advertising space. Surprisingly, a simple technical restriction (vertical filming) radically changes creative techniques and the structure of storytelling. It is revolutionary. Now IGTV is not showing ads, but that might change soon, and the platform is testing new ways to help advertisers develop new communication strategies. I am sure pioneer brands who are already on IGTV with original content will conquer the most advanced Internet audience. New vertical ideas may change the visual culture of the digital generation for the next few decades.
Here are some of the positive aspects of IGTV:
• It’s a very new, unique format with a distinctively different media strategy. While marketers are arguing about what ‘the new marketing’ is, IGTV is developing it.
• It is aggressively digital. No discussion. Made for the digital space and consumed only by digital ‘animals’. They have their own culture that cannot be explained by ‘the others’. A secret visual code. This is very good for the implementation of trendy premium ideas.
• It’s natural for mobile users. The position of human eyes and hands correspond to the composition of the shot. This new generation of users are born to live in a digital world, and IGTV serves their needs even physically! Everything becomes mobile. Every serious communication campaign is going to be planned to look good in mobile format. It'll provoke social media users to be more creative. It is not so easy to create unique vertical content that's never been seen before. So people need to be more imaginative.
• Inventing new creative tools. Vertical stories in drama will feature vertical composition by design. If you really start creating a vertical drama, you will reconsider many writing techniques. 'Vertical storytelling' creates a new type of structure. The vertical limit lets you explore your imagination.
• Creating new genres. I expect that new 'vertical series' and 'vertical movies' will appear. They will look completely different to what we're used to. Possibly, in five years we will watch two-minute vertical films and a series made of one-minute episodes.
Here are a few IGTV experiments created by brands so far:
1. Chipotle. This restaurant brand was one of the first to publish a long video in IGTV. An original, funny idea created for the vertical format. The idea itself expresses the brand positioning and was made especially for the IGTV.
2. Louis Vuitton. A 12-minute video. Amazing composition in every shot, presented stunningly in vertical format. A glamorous world is packed in one single frame. It's great that fashion brands are pioneering IGTV vertical experiments. Stylish things correspond to a stylish format, after all.
3. MTV. The music channel's films tell stories from the point of view of several young people. Very cool, with a documentary feel. Absurdist, witty and interesting. Great animation makes this content unique.