Why are Reels the #1 best way to grow your Instagram followings?
Updated: Feb 18
With the popularity of short video content on the rise, have you considered Instagram Reels for your business yet?
Instagram Reels is Facebook’s attempt (Facebook owns Instagram) to neutralize the popularity of TikTok. For many who are uncomfortable using TikTok due to some controversial issues - Instagram is the perfect place to target that audience with video-sharing content that’s produced similarly to TikTok.
Either way, Reels should be a crucial piece of your business’s marketing strategy as you move into 2022. As consumer expectations evolve, so too should your strategy to engage with them and meet them where they are.
So, why Instagram Reels? And what’s the value?
Let’s check it out.
Some Impactful Instagram Digital Marketing Stats
Instagram is a massive social media app that loyal users often open once or more per day, on average. If you’re not reassessing your social media strategy on a semi-regular basis (and considering Instagram seriously), then you’re missing out on massive potential for increased brand awareness and engagement with your target audience.
Here are some Instagram stats:
Instagram has surpassed 1 billion global users (2020)
The growth of Instagram doesn’t show any sign of slowing down
The platform is largely dominated by Gen Z and MIllennials
Instagram has an incredibly loyal user base
63% of Americans report checking their Instagram daily
Users spend an average of 7 hours per week on the platform
Average branded engagement of Instagram content hovers around 1.22%
Compared to Facebook Pages (0.08%) and Twitter (0.045%) - this number means more impact for your time and money invested in the content
According to Entrepreneur, accounts report 67% more engagement with Reels versus regular video or static image content posts
What are Instagram Reels?
Instagram Reels offer a unique content opportunity for businesses looking to grow and engage more with their audiences. Reels also allow for lengthier communication without drafting complex written content.
Users are discovering new brands regularly through the Reels feature. About two-thirds of the “Explore” page can be dominated at a single time with Reels content. Thinking about the opportunity to grow your follower base (and then continue to interact with them through other forms of content) is valuable enough in itself.
According to Instagram, Reels are “a new way for anyone — people, creators, and businesses — to create and discover short, entertaining videos on Instagram.” Instagram Reels are a chance to inspire your audience with short and entertaining videos that are much more easily discoverable across Instagram than other forms of content on the platform.
In terms of actual functionality, Instagram Reels are full-screen, vertical video clips that span anywhere from 15-seconds to a maximum of 60-seconds. Typically, these clips include audio clips and visual effects as well. Just like your regular content, people can interact with Reels by liking, sharing, responding to, and adding comments to the content.
Reels live in a separate tab of your business account’s Instagram feed, while also showing up on your followers’ feeds as well. You can share reels to your story for an added engagement/impact with anyone who prefers to scroll through their stories versus their regular feed of content.
Why Should your Business Create Instagram Reels?
Free Exposure: Aside from some sweat equity (and time), your business can conceivably create Instagram Reels content for free. By simply posting this content on your account, the algorithm prioritizes your content and will promote it to people who aren’t just your followers. Reels can significantly increase your follower base and attract the attention of users who may not have otherwise found your account.
Reach Thousands Organically: Forget sponsored content, Instagram Reels are a great way to reach thousands of new users without having to pay for that exposure. In an age where budgets for promoted content are usually worked into your digital marketing strategy, Instagram Reels can be a great way to reach those new eyes without spending a dime to do it. Instagram Reels content may also have a slow-burn effect, taking up to a week to reach your users (unlike typical feed content which shows up on a follower’s feed within a day or two).
Great for Brand Awareness: Hitting the “Explore” page with your Instagram Reel content is great for overall brand awareness for your product or service. The more places that your content can be seen (and by those who want to see it), the better!
Easy to Use System: Instagram Reels is a fairly easy system to use and allows creators to insert different video and audio effects. Reels are easy to edit within the app but can also be done externally if you’d prefer.
Provides Audience Insights: Instagram Reels can be a great way to get more audience insights about your current follower base and the potential eyes that you want to get in front of. Gain valuable insights from your Instagram Reels like when your users are viewing content, which topics they are interested in, and more. Use these insights to reassess your overall social media strategy.
Boost your Story Content: Reshare your reels to your story to maximize eyes on your content. This can boost out your daily story content too without having to create any additional content.
Take Advantage of Instagram’s Algorithm: Instagram promotes short video content much more than it does static photo content. Stories are only visible to those who follow you or who discover your account and opt to watch your story content.
More Engaging Content: Anyone who has gotten lost in the “infinite doomscroll” of Instagram Reels or TikTok content understands the power that short video content has on its users. It’s easy to spend 30 minutes (or more) scrolling through new videos on any topic imaginable. The best part is that the Instagram algorithm usually prioritizes content that it believes you will like - so your users will be seeing your videos if they’re already somewhat interested. The feed is designed to deliver your users content that they don’t want to turn away from!
My Business is on TikTok - Why do I Need Instagram Reels?
If you’re already creating content for TikTok - that’s great! That means that your business is going to already be well-versed in short video content creation. However, if you’re tempted to post the same content from one platform to the other - experts caution against this.
Instagram Reels prioritizes original content versus reposted TikTok content with the watermarks. While you can create similar content (even use video that you’ve shot on the same day), most digital marketing strategists would recommend that you create original videos for both platforms. The nice part? You can still say the same message with your content!