Logging on to your Instagram feed has just become a lot louder and a lot more colourful! Instagram has officially launched its answer to compete with the short video app TikTok — Instagram Reels.
Reels allows Instagram users to create short videos to music and is seen to be Facebook’s latest attempt to compete with the widely popular platform TikTok.
Instagram Reels’ release happened just as Instagram Stories is reaching its fourth anniversary and the two features have a lot in common.
Instagram Stories launched in 2016 as an adaptation of Snapchat and has proven to be very successful for the platform.
Instagram Reels are viewed by many as Facebook’s attempt to compete with TikTok and entice TikTok’s huge user base to Instagram. Time will tell if this new feature will be as successful as Stories.
Here is everything we know so far about the new feature….
What is Reels?
Instagram Reels is a new format for Instagram Stories. The new feature allows users to record and edit together 15-second video clips set to music which can have visual effects added to them.
Creators can share their reels on their stories and their main feed for their followers to see.
If your account is set to public, your reels will also be shared with a new dedicated space in explore, where it has the chance to be seen and discovered by the wider Instagram community.
When you share reels featuring certain songs, hashtags, or effects, your reel may also appear on dedicated pages when someone clicks on that song, hashtag, or effect.
Instagram Reels has just launched globally in 50 countries including the US and UK. Reels will arrive in the latest version of Instagram for iOS and Android from now, so get on it!
Reels has already been in use in India, Brazil, France, and Germany. Notably, Facebook began testing reels in India in early July a few days after TikTok was banned by the Government.
How do Reels work?
Reels lives inside of stories. The Rolodex of options at the bottom of the screen — for creating live videos, text posts, or boomerangs — has been updated to add a tab for reels.
Once users have selected the reels button several editing tools will pop up and users can video themselves with or without music and using different effects.
There is a wide range of music available for people to select from the Instagram music library. You are also able to add your audio by recording a reel with it. If you share a reel with your original audio it will be attributed to you so other people can create reels with it by selecting “Use Audio” from your reel.
To make editing easier Instagram has included the ‘align’ feature which allows you to line up objects from previous clips before recording the next one allowing for smooth transitions for outfit changes or new people joining a reel.
The reels in the explore feature are on a vertical scroll so you can scroll through them in the same way you scroll through TikTok videos.
How can Influencers and Brands use Reels?
In France, where Reels launched earlier this summer, Sephora France and Louis Vuitton used it successfully for advertising. On average Sephora, France receives 300k views on their reels and Louis Vuitton averages 5 million views on their content.
Sephora reels content is light-hearted and humorous covering creative themes about women who wear their makeup all created in a style similar to what can be seen on TikTok. In contrast, Louis Vuitton has produced dramatic artistic videos to show off their new bag collection at different angles.
The visuals and tone of the two companies’ reels are very different but both have been popular suggesting that reels might provide users with an outlet to be more creative and fun on Instagram.
Reels give creators more choice, a new way to be discovered and to build an audience on Instagram.
In the explore feed some reels will appear with a “featured” label. If your reel is featured in explore, you’ll receive a notification. Featured reels are a selection of public reels chosen by Instagram to help users discover original content which they hope will “entertain and inspire.”
This new algorithm may help encourage influencers to create and share more real, spontaneous content on Instagram vs. the polished, filtered photos that were popular in the past but consumers have experienced some fatigue too.
Some influencers in France have been able to replicate some of the fun video trends from TikTok on reels with great success. @Junesixtyfive, a fashion influencer, created a video showcasing different outfits, a trend made popular on TikTok, which received 2.1 million views.
5928600″>Wall Street Journal recently reported that Facebook has offered financial incentives to US influencers on TikTok, with high followings, to use reels suggesting that they are trying to create fun viral content on Instagram reels which has made TikTok so popular.
Stay tuned for more information on Instagram reels!
If you would like to find out more about creating an influencer marketing strategy that involves Instagram Reels, please get in touch email@example.com.