What You Should Know about Instagram’s Latest Feature: Instagram Reels
As a platform that’s popular among users, Instagram is constantly working on coming up with new features that can drive engagement on the platform. With more businesses using Instagram marketing today, it’s imperative to take advantage of Instagram’s latest features to boost business growth and gain more Instagram followers. Instagram Reels is the latest addition to the pool of features that Instagram offers and this guide will take you through all you need to know about this exciting feature.
What is Instagram Reels?
Instagram Reels makes use of a content format through which you can make and share 15 second videos on a new dedicated feed as well as Explore tab. Reels is an attempt by Facebook to compete with TikTok’s popularity. This short video format is great especially to connect with Gen-Z.
Although initially launched in Brazil in 2019, Instagram Reels is now available in more than 50 other countries on iOS and Android. Here, users can record up to 15 seconds multi-clips using a variety of creative features that will make content more engaging and increase the possibility of getting more Instagram likes.
Just as TikTok has a “For You” page, Instagram Reels has a dedicated feed at the top of the Explore tab. When you tap on the first Reel, you’ll be able to see other Reels from trending Instagram accounts.
The primary objective of both Instagram Reels and TikTok videos are the same: to create short, engaging content that will engage users. The two differ on some aspects though, which are as follows:
- Reels is a new feature within Instagram while TikTok is a platform.
- In Instagram Reels, users can create 15 second videos only but on TikTok, the limit is 1 minute.
- Any Instagram Reels shared to Instagram Stories will disappear in 24 hours but TikTok videos remain on the platform.
- Instagram Reels doesn’t currently support duet & local file upload but on TikTok, users can duet and upload content on the app.
Why should your business use Instagram Reels?
Instagram’s latest Reels feature, inspired by Tiktok’s popularity, is worth using if you want to boost business growth and gain more real Instagram followers. Instagram Reels have several editing tools that can help you create engaging content for your Instagram followers. Reels also have a dedicated landing spot on the Explore tab that can help you reach a wider audience. You can also share Reels to your Stories or post it in your feed. Because of the dedicated space they appear on within the Instagram platform, you’ll have access to a lot more people and can get more Instagram likes and improve the visibility of your brand.
You’ll also get attributed for any original audio recorded and video customisation will be possible using music without any copyright restrictions. Videos tend to engage Instagram followers a lot more than other types of content and can be effectively used to communicate any message that will further increase brand popularity.
How can you make use of Instagram Reels?
Knowing what Instagram Reels is isn’t enough. You need to know how to be able to use it. Read ahead to find out how you can create and share Reels and how Reels can be applied for business purposes.
Logging in to Reels
To log in to Reels, open Instagram Stories and choose Reels. This is where you’ll have to work to create a Reel.
Creating Instagram Reels
You can either create a Reel by pressing and holding the camera record button or uploading a video from your camera roll and editing it. You can either record a series of clips 1 at a time or all at once.
- Tap the Reels button at the bottom of the screen.
- Make use of the tools provided to create your footage. The following tools can be used:
- Audio – you can add audio from your library or record your own, in which case, others will be able to “Use audio” from your Reel if you have a public account.
- Speed – you can either speed up your video or slow it down to create the effect of your choice.
- Effects – special effects can be added from the range of options provided.
- Timer – you can establish a timer so that your video may be recorded hands free. A 3-2-1 countdown will occur before your video is recorded for the time period you’ve selected.
- Align – this will help you line up content from different clips to create seamless changes that are helpful when you want to record outfit changes or change the music used.
Once you’ve recorded your content, you can add drawings, stickers, and text to make edits to your Reel.
Sharing Instagram Reels
Sharing your Reels with your real Instagram followers is necessary for you to have a wide reach. Once you’ve created your Reel, you’ll see the Share page where you can add a video thumbnail to your Reel and write a caption.
With a public account, you’ll be able to share the Reel to the dedicated spot in the Explore tab where you can reach more Instagram followers and get more Instagram likes. You can also post it to your Feed. A Reel that has a specific song, hashtag, or special effect can also be viewed by Instagram followers who click on that particular song, hashtag, or special effect.
Private account holders can share Reels to their feed without anyone else being able to access their Reels or use original audio, unless they’re Instagram followers. As a business, your profile will be public so you’ll be able to share Reels that can reach a much wider audience.
You can even share Reels to your Instagram Story but they’ll disappear in 24 hours.
Just like IGTV, there’s a separate Reels tab on your profile where your real Instagram followers will be able to find the Reels you’ve posted.
Watching Instagram Reels
There are different ways that Reels can be found and watched. Reels can be seen on your Instagram followers’ feed or the Explore tab. Some Reels on the Explore tab that have the featured label are those that have been chosen by Instagram. Reels can also be found by searching for specific audio or hashtags on the Instagram platform.
You’ll be able to see comments, Instagram likes and mentions on your Reels as well as get notified if your Reel is selected as a featured Reel by Instagram for the Explore tab.
Applying Instagram Reels for business purposes
Businesses can benefit from using Instagram Reels through several ways:
Reuse old TikTok videos
If you’ve posted content to TikTok, reuse those videos on your Instagram Reels. This will enable you to reach out to an audience on a different social media platform and make it possible for you to engage the platform’s users with your content.
Users love video content and videos can do a better job of showcasing your products. The fact that Instagram Reels appear on the Explore tab means that a lot more people will be able to view them even if they aren’t your current Instagram followers. This is a massive opportunity for you to wow your viewers by flaunting your products and their uses. If you run an apparel company, for example, you can create seamless transitions between different outfits and give your viewers an idea of just how good your products look when put on. This can create a more lasting impression on your viewers and get them excited about your brand.
Have a special offer or upcoming sales plan that you want to announce? Why not do it through Instagram Reels. You can give your Instagram followers all the information they need in a short 15 seconds video. Tell them what the offer is and how they can benefit from it or what they can do to take advantage of your next sales.
Post educational content
Content that educates your viewers about your brand and several related topics within the field is a great way to engage your audience more. Viewers are more likely to retain the information you put across through such videos because they’re visually appealing and short which means they’re not mentally taxing to sit through.
Share behind the scenes footage
Instagram Reels can be a great way for you to share behind the scenes footage so that your Instagram followers get to know you better. Consumers today are looking for brands that they can connect with on a more personal level. Sharing behind the scenes footage will help you showcase your brand’s personality and create that personal connect with your viewers. You need to come across as an authentic voice for consumers to trust you and develop loyalty towards your brand. Through Instagram Reels, you can share the process of procuring raw materials or manufacturing your product. You can even depict a regular day at the workplace, highlight employee stories, or even communicate your brand story.
If you want to boost business growth through Instagram marketing, taking advantage of the new Reels feature can be a great way to help you achieve your goals. Just remember to keep it authentic and focus on creating quality content that your Instagram followers can connect with.