5 Things You Didn't Know About Instagram Reels
by Allison Stewart, on Aug 10, 2021 10:59:41 AM
Instagram Reels are a direct response to the rise of TikTok, the most downloaded app of 2020. Like TikTok, Reels offers a way for people to share addictive and entertaining short videos, many of which feature text overlays, fun effects, and popular music, and it marks an evolution of video on Instagram's platform. At the launch of Instagram Stories in 2016, for instance, the app reported 150 million users using the feature. Five years later, over 500 million users are posting on their Stories daily. Given that development, Reels has high potential, both for individual users and for businesses.
Depending on your type of organization, you can use Reels for product demos, helpful checklists, employee spotlights, behind-the-scenes peeks, and more. Whatever your ultimate Reels strategy is, though, keep these five things in mind:
1. Instagram’s algorithm seems to prioritize Reels.
Because this is Instagram’s “new toy,” their objective is to get more users creating content on Reels. The videos can vary from 15-60 seconds in length, just enough time to captivate users with exciting, informational, or funny content. Not only does the algorithm favor Reels, but this feature also has toolbar real estate in the app, making it easy for users to scroll through hours of content.
2. Reels Explore page is tailored to you.
Just as Instagram’s Explore Tab shows users photos that they enjoy, Reels’ algorithm is based on users you currently follow and features content that is entertaining or relevant to you. Using hashtags on Reels is crucial; the more relevant your hashtags are, the more visibility you’ll have with your target audience.
3. Reels have a broader reach than posts alone.
Because Instagram is prioritizing Reels, your video has a higher possibility of being seen than a typical video or IGTV. IGTV allows you to share long-form videos with your existing audience, making them great for interviews, series, and in-depth videos. The goal of Reels, on the other hand, is to entice and intrigue a new audience who may not have stumbled upon your page just yet.
4. Following trends can help boost your video.
Much like TikTok, Reels flourish when users follow trends: popular sounds or songs, “transition” videos, and special effects. If users find a sound fun or entertaining, they’re likely to click on the link to that sound, taking them to other videos utilizing the same sound.
5. Reels are NOT TikTok videos.
Since TikTok is the direct competitor of Instagram Reels, it’s best not to post a video created on TikTok on Reels, or vice versa. Users attempting to have a unique and engaging presence on both apps must maintain creativity on both platforms.
Allison is a member of Presidio's creative team, and she works on social media content creation, videography, photography, and event coordination. Allison is currently pursuing her B.A. in Business Administration with an emphasis in New Media Marketing at Purdue University.