Instagram Reels 101

One of Instagram's newest and most notable features is IG Reels. On our last blog post, we spoke about how much Instagram continues to add to the platform, check out some of the other features they’ve updated here! Despite having so many, Reels is the one that really stands out. 

 

Today, we are giving you an introduction to this important new addition to the platform, including why it’s important to use it and how you can get started.

@justinhavreteam is taking full advantage of the new feature!

What is “Reels”?

A reel is a short clip video, typically accompanied by music. They can be up to 30 seconds long and are often used with accompanying text bubbles to help give more information. 

 

Wait, that sounds like TikTok!

You’re right. Reels came out when Tik Tok was starting to become popular as an attempt to compete. There are still many differences between the two platforms, but the end result is actually quite similar and the content is nearly identical. People who use both generally prefer TikTok, partly for its unique algorithm that is seen as more favourable to small creators.

Reels is a feature meant to compete against TikTok

 

If TikTok seems to be better, why would I use Reels?

You should use TikTok! But if you’re already on Instagram and want to grow your audience and expand your reach, Reels is the best way to do it at this moment. Whenever IG puts out a new feature, it seriously favours the users who run with it from the beginning. In the grand scheme of things, Reels are pretty much brand new and people are still learning. So, if you jump on it now and use it consistently, you still have a good chance of increasing your audience because of it, and as the platform will be favouring your account for supporting it, you can expect that your regular posts will also do better than those of people who don’t use Reels! Win-win for you!

 

I’m already on Tik Tok can I reuse my content?

YES! Big time! You don’t have to go from scratch on reels. If you are already creating Tik Tok videos, you can easily repost them on Instagram. If you want IG to feel a bit happier, you can try to add a new song locally on the Reels app, but it’s not necessary. Just by frequently using the reels app, you’ll already see a lot of benefits.

 

I’ve never used Tik Tok and I don’t know what I should be creating!

The lovely thing about these short-form videos is that they are generally expected to be less curated than your standard posts. This means you don’t have to worry about it so much. You’ll see every type of content imaginable on reels! From lip-syncing videos to funny clips, to educational content, to weird dances, to trends. If you don’t know where to start, it’s often easiest to begin with trends and learn about the platform without having to be too creative. If you have a lot of info, you can also begin with educational content, because it always performs well and doesn’t require too much effort in order to put something out there! Don’t be afraid to mix it up and post a bit of everything on reels.

@ramage.co created a fun video playing off of M.C Hammer's 'U Can't Touch This'

How do I get started?

The biggest drawback of Reels is the weak local editing software they provide you with. It’s not user friendly and can get really frustrating to use, plus the included features are very minimal! Spare yourself your energy and download an app that works well for real creation. We recommend Capcut, which lets you edit video clips together, with things like transitions, photos, music, text, filters, and anything else you could ever need! Start with the basics, just putting a few clips together with some timed-text on top. As you get more comfortable with using it, you’ll be eager to try the other features and see how much your videos will improve as you go! After it’s all done, just download and post it right on the reels section of the Instagram app. 

 

There you have it! Your Reels 101 training in a few short minutes. We’re sure you already know though, the best way to learn it is by doing! So get yourself on Instagram and begin playing around with this new feature, so that you can start reaping the benefits as soon as possible!

 

If you're looking for more tips and guidance on Instagram and all the features, check out our social media services here!

 

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Michelle Pijanowski

Michelle Pijanowski, better known as PJ, is our go-to girl for all things social. Don’t let her love of gourmet ice cream and appreciation of craft beer fool you! She isn’t your average millennial whose experience starts and ends with an Insta account. A traveller at heart, PJ has always been excited by storytelling and connecting with people from all walks of life. Her passion for content creation started when she accidentally landed an internship in marketing that ended up leading her into the worlds of social media and journalism. Despite not even having a personal Instagram at the time, she immediately fell in love with helping brands grow a community through the power of the internet. She’s worked with businesses of all shapes and sizes, from hotels to restaurants to startups. After years of learning the ins and outs of different social networks and completing her degree in Communication and Media, PJ is stoked to help brands build a human connection with a virtual audience.


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