How to: Using Instagram Reels for Marketing Your Business
If you haven’t heard of Instagram Reels yet, then where have you been? Reels was Instagram’s answer to TikTok, bringing short form, full-screen videos to the popular Meta-run app.
Like TikToks, Reels can run up to 60 seconds (though TikTok just introduced a 3-minute feature), and there are a variety of editing options for users. Creators can add text, transitions, voice effects, and music to make their Reels stand out from the crowd.
The Instagram app now features a Reels section at the bottom of the screen, giving users the option to scroll through Reels alone. Here, there is greater access to a wider variety of accounts, giving businesses ample opportunity to be spotted by their target audience.
Reels are the new way to go viral and attract attention, so it’s vital to use them for business – no matter your niche. In this guide, we explain how best to use Reels to showcase your business, gain followers, and create leads. Keep reading to learn more.
At this point, there’s no excuse to not be using Instagram Reels for your business. Many brands have noticed that their engagement and followers have skyrocketed after implementing Reels into their content strategy.
Recently, it has become common knowledge that video content is king on social media. Users love watching videos, especially in short form, that capture attention and don’t drag on too long. This immediately became clear with the success of TikTok, so it’s no wonder that Meta wanted to get in on the action.
Instagram still pips TikTok to the post with its user numbers, however. Right now, the app has well over one billion monthly users, and 500 million daily users.
The Reels Algorithm
Reels are a fantastic way to capture the attention of these users, since they provide a way to reach more people who don’t follow you. The algorithm shows users Reels it thinks they will like based on their liking, viewing, and commenting habits. As a result, it finds your target audience for you and shows them your content.
While nobody knows exactly how the Reels algorithm works, it’s clear that it works wonders for businesses in a huge range of niches. And this isn’t only down to the fact that it’s short-form video content with an independent algorithm.
Reels have a longer lifespan than other posts. Stories last 24 hours, and most posts drop out of circulation within three days. However, Reels last much longer and can appear in the Reels feed up to two weeks after posting.
So, if you post a Reel and don’t see immediate success, don’t delete it! It may pick up thousands of views and engagement over fourteen days later.
Using Instagram Reels to Showcase Your Business: Some Ideas
Some business owners are initially intimidated by the prospect of Reels. If you have built an online following based on Instagram pictures, the idea of switching to video seems intimidating. After all, video editing is a whole new learning curve. However, the above information shows that it’s one hundred per cent worth it.
Here are some easy content ideas to get you started:
Show off Your Products
The easiest way to transform picture content into video content is by showing off your products or services.
There are plenty of Reel audios suited to showing off product collections, but you can also use music and film your products that way. Show them in action or staged in a clever way, like a typical advertisement.
You can also build some anticipation for an upcoming product launch using the same methods.
Behind the Scenes
Instagram users love behind the scenes content. This type of Reel will definitely appeal to your existing followers, but it can also hook in potential clients by humanizing your business and showing people what happens behind the camera.
Here are some ideas for behind-the-scenes content:
- Show how a particular product is made
- Display a service that you offer in action
- Share the faces of the team behind the business
- Show how you shoot your pictures/Reels
- For solo business owners, share a video of your “typical day”
Do you get a lot of the same questions? Use Reels as an opportunity to answer the burning questions of your audience, letting them in on everything they need to know about your business and what you offer.
Reels are a great educational tool in general. There are a variety of ways to educate potential clients or customers, and doing so is essential to position your business as an expert in the industry.
Aside from FAQs, try collecting questions using the Q&A sticker in Stories and using those. You can also share unique ways to get results from the service or product you offer or share facts and statistics.
Memes are up there with the most shareable content on Instagram. Most people are familiar with a different format of memes, consisting of pictures that are shared over and over again with different captions or text. Reels (and TikTok) have birthed a new style of meme, consisting of trending audios.
A large proportion of the trending audios on Reels (more on trending audios later) are funny sounds that can be reworked to fit your business. All you need to do is scroll to find a trending audio, then get creative and find a way to incorporate it into your niche. It can be time consuming, but it’s worth it if you show up on the feeds of thousands of users and make them laugh. It’s sure to earn you a following.
Returning to the educational content, how-to videos are perfect for letting your audience in on the action. There are also numerous ways to educate, including:
- For style or clothing businesses: Show how to style an item in several different ways
- For food businesses: Do a recipe walkthrough
- For art businesses: Share an art tutorial
- For other products: Film one of your products in use to show how it can benefit people
The possibilities are quite literally endless, so get creative and find a way to make Reels suit your niche.
Instagram Reels can require a learning curve, but fortunately, they are pretty easy to get the hang of.
Check out some of our top tips below so you can start acing your Reels right away.
On the Instagram Reels section, the audio used in each Reel is visible at the bottom of the screen in the form of a rolling banner. When there is a diagonal arrow in the bottom left corner, it means the audio is trending, which means it is likely to garner a lot of attention.
When deciding what kind of Reels to create, it’s typically a good idea to scroll through other creators’ content to see what’s trending, then adapt the audio to suit your niche.
Always Use Audios
Like hashtags, Reels audios provide a way for your content to be seen. Users can scroll through a particular sound on the app, giving them a chance to discover accounts using that audio. Therefore, there is potential for greater discovery and engagement.
Please note that the available audio library may differ depending on your account type. Business accounts may have a much more restricted library due to copyright issues, but creator accounts have access to the complete Apple Music library.
Use Closed Captions
Not only does adding captions make your content more accessible to the deaf/HOH community; it also benefits hearing users. Many people scroll the app with their sound off, even if they’re in the Reels section. Adding closed captions can help you to engage with all sorts of users.
You can find an automatic closed caption option in the Reels creator window, so you won’t even need to type everything up yourself!
Tag Other Accounts
Tagging other accounts can garner more reach by putting your content on their feed, and they may even share it to their own. However, avoid the mistake of tagging every account that pops up in your feed – it’s annoying and comes across as spam.
Instead, tag relevant accounts such as other brands whose products you have used.
Share Reels to Your Feed
When you post a Reel, it goes to a small sub-tab on your profile page, where all videos are now posted. However, Reels can get a greater push when you also share them in your feed.
Be aware, however, that the video will be cropped to a square on your profile and will appear smaller in the user feed. As a result, a pro tip is to place any text as centrally as possible.
Like other forms of Instagram content, Reels come with an analytics feature for business and creator accounts.
The metrics displayed include:
- Accounts Reached: How many unique users saw the Reel at least once.
- Plays: The total number of times the Reel was watched.
- Likes: How many users liked the Reel
- Comments: The number of comments on the Reel
- Saves: The number of accounts that bookmarked the Reel
- Shares: The number of times users shared your Reel to their story or sent it to other users (this metric is unavailable in some regions)
Insights are essential for any business hoping to grow on Instagram. A couple of days after posting any Reel, review the analytics. It can be helpful to keep track of what kind of content you are posting and how it performed.
That way, you can see what your followers (and potential followers) like to see. Do they prefer FAQs, behind-the-scenes footage, or product videos? Your insights will tell you.
Looking to the Future: How Using Reels for Business Will Change
Instagram Reels have now been around for over a year, and they are only growing in popularity. Slowly, Meta is adding more features to Reels, including the option to include Shopping and Branded content.
There’s no telling what’s next for Instagram Reels, but it’s certain that they are an amazing growth hack for businesses in all niches.
Hopefully, this article gave you an awesome insight into Reels and how to get started. They are a key tool for business, so if you aren’t using them already, it’s never too late to start.