How to Use Instagram Reels as a Business Tool
By Stacy | Sep 3, 2020 (5 min read)
While the whole world has become enamored with TikTok and the micro music video content they offer, the other social media platforms have been watching.
Instagram is known for taking other platforms’ best features and using them on their own app.
With Instagram Reels, they have done it once again.
If their success with incorporating stories is anything to go by, there is a high chance that Reels will soon become another standard feature on the platform.
In early August this year, Instagram introduced Reels, a new feature that aims to compete with TikTok and Triller, and other music and video sharing apps.
Essentially, Instagram Reels enables you or your brand to make your own short videos within Instagram itself.
How To Create Instagram Reels
When you access the Instagram Camera you will notice three options at the bottom of the camera: Live, Story, and Reels.
To begin to create a music video in Reels, you start by recording a clip of yourself, which you can then edit together to create the Reel. You also have the option of choosing a prerecorded video in your phone’s library.
Now that you have a video, you can begin to use Reels’ tools to customize and give your Reel some extra flair.
Audio: music has already been part of Instagram for a few years, and this tool allows you to choose songs from a massive licensed library. The audio select will enable you to scrub through the song by showing you the lyrics of the section you are on.
Speed: this controls the rate at which the clip you record is played back. You’ll record in regular time, but when you review the clip for editing, it will be shown in the time you selected.
Effects: similar to the filters you can use on regular Instagram and Stories, they change your appearance or add different effects to the video.
Timer: setting a timer will record your video for a certain period. The timer will also count down, giving you time to get in position.
Editing and Sharing in Reels
Instagram Reels doesn’t have editing after your record, so you must film yourself in chunks. The app will then string them together with the song clip you’ve chosen.
You’ll see a pink bar at the top of the screen that fills up the longer you film. This is the Reel progress bar. After the bar is full, you can’t record any more sections.
Once you’re ready to share the Reel, tap the arrow next to the record button.
You’ll then be prompted to review the Reel again to make sure it’s what you want. You can also add color filters, stickers, and text if you choose before sharing.
Where to Find Instagram Reels
Your Reels are posted to your Stories for your friends and followers to see for 24 hours. You will also see the Reels of people you follow in your story feed.
Currently, Instagram Reels are found in the Explore tab on the Instagram app. If you create your own Reels, they will be featured on your profile in the top alongside your grid, IGTV videos, and tagged photos.
Using Instagram Reels for Business
If TikTok’s incredible rise to popularity is anything to go by, Instagram Reels could be a valuable way to gain new engagement for your business.
Obviously, a brand has a different motive online than a regular person posting a fun music video. However, that doesn’t mean businesses can’t adapt and get creative.
Adding music and effects to your short-form videos might be a way to attract new brand likes. If you are doing product promotions, then Reels can offer you a way to make fun, engaging mini-commercials.
A lot of creators and brands also film and edit their videos using their video editing software and then upload to reels to add any final touches they want, such as text or audio. This allows your brand to take time to create your videos thoughtfully before posting to Reels.
In short, if you’re already using Instagram for your business, it may be worth giving Instagram Reels a try. Some high profile brands such as Sephora, Netflix, Louis Vuitton, and Red Bull are already testing them and gaining impressive results.
Of course, there is a chance that the Instagram Reels feature doesn’t take off, and you can return to Stories and regular posts. However, once a new feature is added to Instagram, it very often becomes adopted by a large majority of users over time.