Instagram marketing has been around since 2010, but the platform keeps making changes that, in turn, require tweaks in marketing strategies. Reels, which arrived in 2020, are short videos of up to 15 seconds each, which can be created and edited within the Instagram app. Users can either record clips as they make their reel or upload pre-recorded clips from their video library. They can also use a variety of special effects and music selections from Instagram’s licensed music library. Its approach is similar to TikTok: short, edited videos with catchy soundtracks, captions and special effects.
Reels are an excellent way for many brands to create organic-feeling content that is a little more informal than a static, posed image. Informality and a sense of familiarity can be a big asset, especially when marketing to younger and more media-savvy demographics. Instagram Reels are ideal for the kind of content that makes viewers feel like they’re “inside” the game, rather than being marketed at. They’re the perfect format for a clever how-to guide, a behind-the-scenes peek at how something is made, and other similar ideas.
Reels are also ideal for showing how your product works and why users should be excited about it. Whether you’re marketing directly to a consumer or other businesses, everyone likes to see the “proof” – so put it front and center! The short, snappy style of Reels means that you can highlight the most important features without losing people along the way. It’s informal and fun but informative.
Effective Reels should entertain while building authority for a brand. This world is the perfect place to play into trending topics and find subtle ways to tie those trends to your products, rather than simply creating short-form commercials. For instance, a brand selling kitchen gadgets might make reels tying into viral food trends, just using the gadgets in the video without making them the focus. This approach also tends to be more algorithm-friendly, helping attract more eyes to your brand.
Although the most obvious use of Instagram Reels is for B2C marketing, it also offers some exciting opportunities for B2B campaigns. Think of Reels as a slide presentation on super-speed: a quick visual presentation with text and images but upgraded with the ability to also use sound and video clips. B2B marketers may wish to focus more on using Reels to explain and highlight product and service details.
Instagram Reels are just the latest in a series of short-form video marketing trends. Whether you’re using them to tie your brand into a major trend or you’re highlighting the best of your business, these small videos can definitely have a big impact!