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  • Writer's pictureCentury Digital Marketing

Instagram Reels Explained

As with many other successful social media features, Instagram took over the TikTok quick video model and named it Instagram Reels. A new feature that, like TikTok, has tons of creative possibilities. Today we are going to give you a good series of tips and tricks so you can learn how to get the most out of Reels on Instagram.

What is Instagram Reels and how does it work?

If you've never used and seen TikTok, let's learn what they are first. It is a short video, in the style that we can do in a story, but with two major differences:

  1. Duration: while the stories have a total duration of 30 seconds each, in the reels we can only extend the time to 15 seconds in total. In addition, we can stop during the recording and perform it in several parts.

  2. Possibilities / creativity: it is true that the filters within the stories on Instagram have given us many alternatives and modifications that we can make in them. But, what reels proposes goes much further. In addition to applying all the filters of the stories, we can also add music, speed adjustments, etc. A good extra in which we can unleash everything that comes to mind.

These videos will be stored in a new section that is enabled in our profile and, in addition, we can also publish them both on our profile and in the stories themselves. Let's see now how we can create one of these videos and all the available functions.

Making an Instagram reel

To make a new reel, we can do it from different parts: from our feed we click on the camera icon (the one we use for stories) and from the bottom bar we move to "Reels"; Or, from our profile, by clicking on the "+" icon and selecting the "Reel" option.

Once in the creation menu of these videos we will see several elements that we can use:

  • Gear: in the upper left corner we find the typical "gear" menu in which, if we click, we will see the different options for sharing content. From hiding this video from a specific person, allowing responses, accepting that others can share it in their stories or saving options in our gallery.

  • Audio: as we have already mentioned, in these videos we can add music as we could already do in our Instagram stories. It is only a matter of entering this option, locate the song that you like and choose the range of 15 seconds that you want to use.

  • Speed: another of the possible actions that we can do is to take fast or slow motion. With the values ​​below 1 you will have a slow motion and, above this value, a fast camera.

  • Effects: by clicking on this option we will activate all the filters that we have saved for our Instagram stories. It is exactly the same interface and the use is identical in reels.

  • Timer: if for some reason you need a countdown to be able to make your new reel, you just have to set the time in this menu and, when you click on record, the countdown will begin.

  • Alignment: this setting will be activated the moment you record the first part of your new post. This function is useful if you have moved during the recording and want to appear in the next section just after finishing the previous one. What Instagram does is show an overlay image with a lower opacity so that, in this way, you can see the last frame before cutting.

  • Clip editor: This is the icon on the left side of the record button (center). If you click on it, you will access the clip editor where you can delete any of them, or modify the cut of the last video.

  • Gallery: as in the rest of Instagram publications, we can add content from our own gallery to reels. By selecting the video in question you will go to the editor where you will have to choose a part of it.

When you have created the reel with all the desired settings, click on the next arrow to continue with the process. In this section you will see a preview of the complete video and, as in the stories, you can add stickers, download the video to your gallery, add texts or paint on it. Click on the next button if everything is ready to be published.

Once you get to the sharing window, you can add a text to your video. You can also choose where your reel will be shared or even save it as a draft if you wish. When everything is complete, click on share and that's it, your reel has been published successfully.

Tips to create the best Reels

Now that you know everything important about these types of videos on Instagram, we want to show you a compilation of tips to make the best content with these videos:

  • Use Hashtags: As we have already explained in other articles, the use of hashtags in any Instagram post maximizes its reach. We recommend that you use 4-7 of these pads accompanying each reel you post. Of course, as long as they are tags related to the theme of your video. If you use hashtags that have nothing to do with it, they will worsen its reach.

  • Magic Alignment: The "alignment" setting in the editor isn't just useful for knowing where you were in the previous clip. If you unleash your creativity and imagination, you will surely come up with a thousand original ways to use it. For example, something you could do in a video is jump around with a colored T-shirt, then trim the end of that clip so that the end is in the air. Then, using the lineup and timer, jump back in a different color shirt and crop the video again to get you in the air. So you will have a "magical" change of clothes in the air.

  • Investigate new filters: a very important point, as in stories, are the filters. We recommend that you not only use them but that, periodically, you investigate new of these elements to save them in your gallery and stand out by using them before others.

  • Use Others' Music: If you like a song that you saw on another user's reel, you can use it without knowing the name of the song. You just have to quickly click on the info of that person's reel and, in this new menu that appears, select the option to "use audio".

  • Get inspired by other creators: of course, if you can't think of anything new you can do with these videos, do your research in the section on exploring other users' reels. So you can get ideas for your next creations.

  • Change the speed: remember that you can vary the speed of any of the clips that you use in your reels and that, in addition, it does not have to be the same in all of them. Using slow motion before "normal" speed or fast motion will attract a lot of attention.

These are the best tips and tricks you can follow to make your reels stand out on Instagram. Reels has become an important tool for content creators and having a presence on it is really important for brands. Let us know if you would like to discuss a proposal that includes Reels for your business!

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