After nearly a year of development, Instagram launched IG Reels in August 2020 in 50 countries worldwide. With Reels, Instagram users can create 15-second short-form videos with audio clips and special effects. Viewers can see reels in their newsfeed, stories, or the new reels tab in the explore page. These videos can include voice-overs or original audio and can utilize in platform filters and special effects. It is an extremely user-friendly video editing and sharing software that allows for short-form video content to have a longer shelf life than 24 hours on the platform.

Many have been quick to notice the similarities between Reels and TikTok and how they compare to each other. Though some have been critical of this new Instagram feature, it has already become widely popular among influencers and brands. Much like Instagram Stories, there has been some skepticism about IG reels, but if it is anything like its predecessor, IG Stories, reels usage, and popularity will grow exponentially.

With Gen Z and Millenial users at the forefront of both TikTok and Instagram content production and consumption, marketers have a tremendous opportunity to reach their target audience with this new tool. While the algorithm for Instagram Reels hasn’t been released, it appears to be very similar to that of TikTok. Through the reels tab, users will see content influenced by who they follow, what content they engage with and their location.

Use Instagram Reels in your marketing strategy

With such a large audience base already active on the platform, and vast opportunities to get creative, brands can utilize this new tool to engage with their audience with creative content. You want to connect with your audience on a deeper level by creating content that resonates with your target audiences’ interests and lifestyles. Use GROWL’s content guide when coming up with ideas for IG Reels:

Reels for product releases or showcases

Take this opportunity to put your product on display in a quick and snappy way that captures attention. Show product versatility, show variety, show off in general. But don’t forget the 80/20 rule: 80% of your time, you should be posting fun content that informs and educates your audience and engages with the community, and 20% of the time, you should be promoting your products or services.

Educational features

Tell your audience a story, take them on a journey with your expertise in your field. Do a mini 15-second tutorial using one of your products or something similar. This is particularly fitting for the food/restaurant industry or even personal lifestyle bloggers.

Behind the scenes

Give your viewers a unique look at your brand and how it operates. Behind the scenes, content is a great way to build up your following and give prospects an inside look at the brand, building a personal connection with your followers.

Announce sales

It can be a bit tricky to do in a way that is authentic and not too salesy. When doing a reel like this, consider it like you are sharing something fun with your best friend. Keep it interesting in a way that captures the attention of your audience, and keep it fun and light so as not to push your audience away.

Get started on Reels:

Step 1 – Start as if you are going to create an IG Story, then at the bottom of the screen, select Reels. This will open the platform’s tools that are used to create a reel. Select the music you’d like to use (or use your own audio), the video’s speed, and any filters or AR effects.

Step 2 – Start shooting your video. You can shoot all at once or in clips. If you are shooting in clips, align your subject matter to ensure seamless transitions.

Step 3 – Share your video! You can share the video to the Reels tab in Explore to be discovered by all Instagram users, not just your followers. You can also share to your newsfeed, so your followers are sure you see your creation. If you have a private profile, your video will only be seen by those who follow your account.

Ready to expand your brand’s marketing strategy with innovative tools like Instagram Reels? Contact the GROWL Team today!

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