5 Things You Need to Make Effective Instagram Videos

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NEGOSENTRO.COM |5 Things You Need to Make Effective Instagram Videos | The fact that online video content can easily pique and capture people’s attention is no secret by now, and it’s the main reason behind its widespread popularity.

It’s why marketers all over the world are doubling down on it as an effective medium to reach target audiences, and why most social media platforms – like Instagram – now follow a “video-first” approach.

The thing is that, in a world where everyone can upload video content anytime, anywhere, to their feeds, you need to go the extra mile to stand out!

Today, we are going to follow in the footsteps of some of the most skilled video companies out there and break down a few key elements you need to make your Instagram’s video content performance amazing!

Let’s get started.

Instagram’s Main Video Formats – Feeds, Stories, and IGTV

Over the past few years, Instagram has focused on developing bigger and better ways to deliver video content to its users. Out of those, the three that you’ll want to focus most of your attention on are feeds, stories, and IGTV.


Feed videos appear on your Instagram’s primary stream of updates and remain there for good – or until you decide to remove them. Your subscribers will see them front and center whenever they scroll on their app and can access them whenever they want.

Feed videos’ permanence and prominence make them great to build up an audience interested in your content or to promote/share details about your products or their features to your existing follower-base.


Instagram Stories expire after 24 hours of being uploaded, so they convey an intrinsic sense of urgency – a “watch it now or lose it forever” type of deal. They are ideal to announce or hype-up upcoming events, limited offers, or to tease future content releases.

Stories are also great to generate audience interactions. Few other mediums give companies and creators such a low-pressure way to serve quick content to their audiences, and have them immediately engage and interact on a more personal and casual level.


IGTV’s platform is Instagram’s bet to meet YouTube’s video hosting supremacy. Users get access to IGTV through the regular app, and both work in tandem through a bunch of features that help accessibility.

The services allow users to post and view longer types of videos and encourage user interaction – with a push for vertical video content. A typical IGTV feed shows content from your already-followed channels and gives the opportunity to discover new content through suggestions and popular videos, making it a terrific way to reach new audiences. Longer form videos are great for pretty much everything, from marketing pieces like explainer videos to personal vlogs and tutorials your audience might be interested in.

And on that note…

Types of Videos That Generate Engagement

As important as your chosen format of delivery might be, the type of video you go for will have a huge impact on user interaction. While not comprehensive, the following list includes some video types that tend to perform extremely well on Instagram and might prompt audiences to engage with your content.


Are you releasing a product and want your audience to know about it? Maybe a new piece of content you’ve been working on is close to being finished and published… Teasers can offer your audience a sneak peek of what’s to come to generate hype and shares.

Show enough to get people talking, but not enough to ruin the surprise. Include CTAs to get the ball rolling and people talking, and you’ll see an increase in buzz built around your big announcements.

Best part? These videos tend to be really easy to produce since you’ll be mostly working with the content you already have.


Instagram audiences seem to love tutorials a great deal! Whether we are talking quick, 15-second recipes or 10-min long explanations, it’s hard to overstate the immediate value of a well-crafted tutorial.

The crucial thing with tutorials is to make them relevant. You need to focus exclusively on things that will be important and of use for your audience. As long as you can manage that, you’ll have a piece that is bound to generate interaction.


People love to get a peek behind the curtain and glimpse as to how things are done, and Instagram’s platform allows you to do it like no other! 

These videos convey a sense of intimacy and increase your audience’s emotional investment in your content or products. Videos with messages from your staff or introducing new members, making-of special events, office or study tours, or vlogs all fall in this category. 

Optimizing Your Video’s Length

Instagram’s audience follows the culture of quick glances and rapids scrolls. With that in mind, it stands to reason that your videos’ length can make or break their performance, beyond just their quality and value!

Feed Videos

Feed pieces can be anywhere between three seconds and one minute. That alone should inform how you shape your content: You need to find effective ways to communicate your message in a minute or less.

That said, audiences are quick to scroll away from feed videos, so shooting for a 30-second or shorter length might be the best way to go.


In theory, Instagram stories are limited to 15 seconds. Pretty short, isn’t it? In practice, though, any video longer than 15 seconds will be automatically chopped into 15-second chunks and shown as combined stories. 

Despite this trick, we suggest using short videos or adapting your content to maintain the stories’ spirit of immediacy and segmentation. 

IGTV Videos

The average IGTV account video length goes from 15 seconds up to 10 minutes. If your account is verified, however, – or if you have a lot of Instagram followers – this limit can be extended up to an hour.

For marketing and promotional purposes, you’ll rarely want to go any longer than 2 minutes. Content creators, on the other hand, have the perfect platform here for long-form content.

General Tips for Better Reach and Engagement

So far, we’ve discussed the big three: avenues to upload your videos, types of videos you should be uploading, and how long you should make them. However, there are plenty of other tips and recommendations – “best practices,” if you will – that can dramatically impact your video content performance on the platform.

Post at The Right Time

Different audiences engage with the platform and its content at different times of the day for a bunch of different reasons, and that includes everything from personal preferences to demographics.

If you are having a hard time figuring what the “best time” is for you and your content, switching to a business profile might be the ticket, as you can leverage Instagram’s analytics to figure out when your followers are more active.

Choose Hashtags Wisely

Most people love using a lot of hashtags. But, even though Instagram allows up to 30, the optimal number sits more around 10 – The more specific, the better.

Select hashtags that are interesting and identify your content. Not only will you be able to track them more accurately, but they will also attract the exact portion of the market you are trying to appeal to. 

Use Clear Call-to-Actions

Get to the point and use an effective CTA that prompts viewers to like, share, and comment on your video. Not sure where to put them? Choose the midpoint of your video.

Why? Because the piece will appear less promotional than if you place it at the beginning, and still get seen by more people than if you just added them at the end.

Be Quick

You have only a few seconds to grab your audience’s attention. If you don’t make them count, you risk losing them as they scroll along. Catch their interest by putting dynamic and appealing visuals within the first three seconds of your video.

Also, leave suspense for Hollywood, get to your point asap.

Shoot in The Correct Dimensions

The following aspect ratios are ideal. You can upload videos with other sizes, but they will be cropped out.

For feed videos, the aspect ratios should be 1:1 in square videos, 1:91:1 in landscape videos, and 4:5 in portrait videos. For stories, they should be vertical, with an aspect ratio of 9:16. And for IGTV, 16:9 for horizontal videos and 9:16 for vertical.

Choosing the correct aspect ratio can immediately improve your piece’s quality, and guarantee it will look “right” on the viewers’ end.

Be Consistent

That goes for both, uniformity of content and regularity of publication. Try and keep harmony within videos by matching every element on it. The colors, music, and people that appear on it and the type of video should be consistent, as well as the schedules where you put content out regularly.

Summing Up

Instagram videos are a great way to connect and engage your audience… if done right!

Whether you are a content creator looking to expand your audience, or a company looking for more exposure for their products, the platform offers an array of features and channels for you to make the most out of the massive audience pool.

Start following the tips we discussed here, and you should notice a marked increase in the engagement and interactions your new pieces generate!

Good luck!

Bio of Victor Blasco:

Victor Blasco is an audiovisual designer, video marketing expert, and founder/CEO of the explainer video company Yum Yum Videos. Besides running the business, he’s a lifelong student of Chinese philosophy and a passionate geek for all things sci-fi.

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