Have you ever heard about Instagram’s new feature called Instagram Reels? Like many other platforms, Instagram presented it to its users during the pandemic to increase the reach and number of users within the platform. Some people describe it as a clone of TikTok by Facebook, as they have many similarities.
In this article, we will talk about the benefits, features, and other ways of using it in your marketing campaigns, as many popular brands are already using it and generate huge traffic and conversions with it. You will find out the main advantages of Instagram Reels and understand how to use them to benefit your brand.
What is Instagram Reels?
Instagram Reels is a new feature of Instagram which offers a new way of creating short and creative videos. Reels allows its users to create and share videos with their friends and anyone on Instagram. You can record and edit up to 30-second entertaining videos with custom audio, effects, and filters.
You can share Instagram Reels on your Instagram feed, and if you have a public account you can become a creator and your Reels can reach millions of users via new space in Explore.
Instagram Reels vs TikTok
As you may know, TikTok was launched in 2016 and since then it has more than 800 million users. The concept of TikTok was very interesting and attracted users very quickly. When Instagram launched Instagram Reels, it was thought to be the copycat of TikTok as there are many similarities between them. Let me present some of the similarities and differences.
- Video length
TikTok users can record up to 60 second videos while Reels has a maximum length of 30 seconds.
As the length of the video is longer on TikTok, it gives more creativity to its users while the users of Instagram Reels have to be more creative in less time.
- Video editing
TikTok gives an opportunity to its users to choose from different effects, templates, and filters while creating videos.
On Instagram Reels the video effects are more restricted and people can choose effects only from Instagram effects’ library. TikTokers can do voice overs on the videos they record, choosing different effects for your voice. Reels also allows you to add voice overs, however you are limited when it comes to adding special effects.
TikTok is the absolute winner when it comes to features duets, reactions and stitches features which Reels doesn’t have yet.
Here I’m going to talk about the algorithm which affects the reach on both platforms.
TikTok’s “For You” page is very customized to its users’ interests, accounts they follow, comments they make and content they create. But the main difference is that the TikTok algorithm works location-based. First your content will be shown to the audience based on your location, then if it goes viral it will be spread worldwide.
As for Instagram Reels, it is not very clear how the algorithm works, but in contrast to TikTok, it is not location-based, and your chances to appear in the explore section is higher.
Also there is a “featured” video section which is a selection of public reels chosen by Instagram to help you discover original content that will entertain and inspire you.
If your reels become featured, the chances are high that it can go viral.
If users have a TikTok pro account, they have access to all TikTok analytics and insights. TikTok gives you an opportunity to see your audience interests, what they are watching, what they are interested in and, what’s most important, you can see where your traffic comes from if your video is trending, which will help you to create content based on that analytics.
Instagram Reels doesn’t show any analytics yet, except views, likes, and comments.
Instagram Reels for brands
As we know, Instagram is one of the main channels for influencer marketing. When Instagram Reels was launched, many influencers and creators started to create interesting content and engage their followers. Then many popular brands started to use Instagram Reels, and the results were very impressive.
Benefits of using Instagram reels in influencer marketing
Both influencers and brands want to represent their product or service in a creative way. Instagram Reels are the best way to do anything creative on Instagram. Though the length of the videos is limited, it also gives the opportunity to think about something that will engage and be interesting to people.
If a brand sends its product to an influencer, they can show it in Instagram Reels, so the content won’t seem so promotional.
Now there are many brands, influencers, and creators that use Instagram Reels and gain huge traffic and engagement. Make sure they are using the perfect Instagram post size to make your images and videos fit perfectly on Instagram.
At first sight, TikTok wins in every sphere as Reels is very new and doesn’t have so many features yet, but there are a few big advantages that will make you understand that this is the right time to use Instagram Reels. As it is the newest feature of Instagram and it is in competition with TikTok, Instagram has increased the reach of Reels to make people use it more. So it means that videos posted in reels will gain more reach than usual posts. There are billions of videos uploaded on TikTok every day, as Instagram Reels is new, there aren’t as many videos as on TikTok and your chances to go viral on Instagram Reels is way higher. So this is the right time to ask the influencers you work with to represent your product or service via Instagram Reels.
Brands and influencers successfully using Instagram Reels.
Let’s take a look together at brands and influencers who started utilizing Instagram Reels and benefit from it. Here we will provide some insights which will help you understand how to use reels for your brand and some ideas on what kinds of videos influencers can create for your products.
One of the early adopters of Instagram Reels was Louis Vuitton. With Reels they got up to 8.6M views.
Louis Vuitton has never appeared on TikTok, but it started to use a trend that is very popular on TikTok. In its reels models change their outfits in 30 seconds whilst dropping the phone showcasing the brand’s new collection. The audience likes these kinds of videos and the brand continues to record.
Sephora France also started to use Instagram Reels showcasing their products and makeup tutorials. They also implemented many TikTok trends on Instagram Reels and their customers liked it very much. They got more than 300K views and high engagement.
If you’re an owner of a high-end product and still think you don’t have much to do with Reels, think again Here is a good example of how an Instagram influencer showcasing Amazon finds in her Reels. Maxie Elise always shares very interesting content with her followers, showing everyday fashion, daily Amazon findings, latest tech toys and much more.
Here is another beauty influencer Negin, showing tricks to her followers via Instagram Reels simultaneously showing the products she uses. This reels gained nearly 2.5M views. Her followers liked it so much that asked her to continue recording Instagram Reels
To conclude, I would like to mention that today social media trends come and go so quickly and winners are those who do everything at the right time.
Instagram Reels is not an exception. Try to test it quickly, implement the trends on your brand in order to appear on users’ discovery page, and make sure you are creating content appropriate to your audience preferences. This is the way to take advantage of the newest game changer in the field.
Are you a Reels or TikTok user? Looking forward to your comments.