5 Different Types of Video Content That You Can Create on Instagram

5 Content Types for Instagram

In order for you to get people to engage with your content on Instagram you need not only be creating truly engaging and consumable content but you also need to be playing Instagram’s game. Let’s break down 5 different types of video content that you can create on Instagram and how to use them to tell your business’s story effectively.

It can be really frustrating trying to keep up with the rules, Trends, and tools that are available to you on instagram. And now that Instagram has come out and said that they are no longer just a photo-sharing app; this means that you’re going to NEED to be creating a lot of video and mulit-media content to be effective on Instagram.

As a business owner this can be incredibly daunting and frustrating. You are already doing so much in your business and trying to pile on one more thing you need to do is going to either make you not want to create and be on the platform OR create content that isn’t going to work as well.

Instagram Feed Video

Instagram Video Conent

This is the original video format for Instagram

  • 3-60 second in length
  • Can be square, horizontal, or vertical video
  • The only video content you can schedule through creator studio or a third party app that will post for you.
  • You can use feed video as part of carousel posts as well


Some things to remember to improve the performance of feed videos

  • 85% of people consume feed content WITHOUT sound. Remember this when you are starting your video since you only have a couple seconds to grab attention. So be sure to include closed captions.
  • Make sure to have a cover image. You will need to select a frame of your video to be the cover image. You cannot add an external image.
  • Like I said before, the first 3-5 seconds are vital for catching attention. Put your best information or captivating visual in the first few seconds.
  • Consider editing your video to hold attention, add additional elements to enhance the story, and remove unnecessary parts. 
  • Shorter are always better than longer. It only needs to be as long as necessary. 


Instagram Story Content

  • Stories are one of the most engaging forms of storytelling on Instagram. These videos or images have a 15 second time limit but you can make as many as you want.
  • Stories are unique in that they only have a 24-hour shelf life. Meaning after 24-hours they go away UNLESS you save them as a highlight to your profile.

What you want to remember when creating story content

  • Stories have a lot of built in creative options as well. You can add closed captions, music, gifs, filters, and more. 
  • Stories allow for you to take your followers on a journey in an organic and raw way. For the best results, plan to tell a story with a start, middle and end.
  • Also use built in features vs 3rd party editing apps or software. The best stories are the ones that use what is available in the app.


Instagram Reel Content

  • This is the most current video tool. This video platform is a direct competitor to TikTok but Instagram has found ways to make it unique. 
  • Reels are 15 second to 3 minute video clips with audio, special effects, editing, and more. 
  • The power of Reels is in the organic reach of your content. Unlike all other Instagram content, that rely heavily on who is following you vs Reels which are organically placed in front of viewers as they watch their Reel’s feed. What is seen is based on what is trendy, content the viewer tends into interact with, and also might like. It really allows for so much more engagement and reach than any other Instagram option.

There are countless creative opportunities with this feature. Here are some things to consider:

  • Use a trending audio clip that is appropriate for your brand. You can easily take an audio clip and add your brand’s own twist to it.
  • Make sure to add text to your reel. This will allow to give relevance and set the tone for the reel.
  • Remember, reels are not just for music and dancing. You can record your own audio clip to share a story, education, or entertain your target audience.
  • Don’t forget to create an engaging caption. Captions are an extension of your Reel. You can even go so far as to give the CTA to have the viewer read the caption for context or more information.


IGTV Content

  • This is instagram’s long form video platform. Here you can upload videos that are up to 15 minutes long.
  • While best performing videos are vertical, you can also post horizontal videos as well.


Instagram is really all about short, visually appealing, and easy to consume videos but here are some tips on how to use this longer medium

  • Go vertical. Even if you have to crop a video, it is always best to stay vertical whenever possible in IGTV. IF you HAVE to go horizontal, start vertical and then que the viewer to turn their phone with a 3, 2, 1 countdown
  • Even though you have 15 minutes, keep it under 3. Shorter videos that get to the point, but hold attention ALWAYS do better.
  • Use the caption to fill in your message AND you can have clickable links in the description. This is GREAT if you are talking about something that is paired with a link like an online product, service, or just trying to get them onto your website.
  • AND swipe up. Instagram has the coveted 10k follower rule for swipe-ups for Instagram stories BUT when you share an IGTV video in stories, you can use swipe-up to redirect to watch the video via IGTV.

Instagram Live

Instagram Live Content

  • This is pretty self explanatory. This is going Live on Instagram.
  • There are no time limits, but you have to stay vertical.
  • Instagram live has three ways to go live 
    • just you, the talking head.
    • Screen share, where you can have slides and images up with yourself in the upper right hand corner
    • With up to 3 other guests called Rooms
  • This also is all done through Instagram natively.

Some tips for you on how to have a successful IG live stream include:

  • Make sure to promote your lives before hand by posting in stories or with a feed post (but remove the post AFTER the live.)
  • And share AFTER you are live to stories as well.
  • You can also save your lives to IGTV upon completion.
  • Make sure to engage with audience members who join in during you Live
  • When you are answering questions during Lives, PIN the comment at the top that has the asked question.
  • And encourage your viewers to share the live with their audience

Bonus Content

Now that we have gone over the 5 different platforms here is that bonus I promised where I share with you how to add Instagram video into your content plan.

As a reminder, a content plan is all about giving you, the creator, a road map on what to create, how it ties into your business objective, and when you will execute this. 

Instagram is incredibly easy to plan for as long as you take the time to create content for it. Using a content calendar, decide what content you want to make and when it needs to be posted. NOTE not all IG video content can be scheduled. ONLY feed and IGTV posts can be scheduled and auto-posted through creator studio or a 3rd party tool. Reels, stories, and lives require manual uploading.

Once you know what needs to be posted and when via your calendar, CREATE the content including the video, messaging, and hashtags (I recommend an excel or google spreadsheet and add a calendar reminder to your actual calendar reminding you to post it to IG. This is just a matter of copy/pasting or hitting publish or live.

Here are some pointers for adding video into your IG plan:

  • Use existing content. If you already filmed a video in any way, bring it over to IG and repurpose it. This can make for a great Feed video or IGTV video
  • Pick a trendy audio from Reels and tie your own information into it. You can simply film yourself smiling or working and add text to the screen while the audio plays.
  • You can BATCH reels by creating the reel videos AND their messages and then save them as drafts. When it is time to post, post it.
    1. Make sure to download the video FIRST just in case.
  • When  you are creating stories plan to do 4-6 at a time. Establish a beginning story, then give details with 2-3 stories, then conclude with a last one. This is known as storyboarding or planned storytelling. It basically gives your viewer a start, middle, and end which results in closure for their viewing experience.
    1. And always reshare content you make on IG in stories as well.
    2. Bonus if you add a gif to it.