Social media is competitive. When a new, popular platform emerges, the others rush to copy its most successful features. So when TikTok arrived on the scene with its catchy, short-form videos, Instagram was quick to jump on the bandwagon.

To compete with Tik-Tok’s ever-growing platform, Instagram released its newest feature, Reels, in August 2020. Despite being available for almost a year, many users aren’t leveraging the full potential of Reels.

It’s essential to include Reels in your B2B business digital marketing strategy. Why? Because Reels allow you to engage with your existing audience with a new type of content. And unlike TikTok, Instagram hasn’t been plagued with drama and uncertainty – which you can read about here – making it a safe choice for businesses to promote their products and services.

Read on to learn what you need to know about Instagram Reels in 2021.

What are Reels?

In the words of Instagram, Reels are “a new way to create and discover short, entertaining videos on Instagram.”

An Instagram Reel is a 15 or 30-second video you can publish on the Instagram platform. You can choose to post your video to either your main feed and Reels feed or just to your Reels feed.

Because Reels are less than 30 seconds long, brands need to use that time wisely to:

  • Entertain
  • Inform, or
  • Provide value to their audience

Reels receive more reach and engagement

The current average engagement for Instagram posts is less than 2 to 3%. If you were to post a video directly onto your feed, it would only be seen by a fraction of your followers. But share that same video as a Reel, and watch your views soar.

This is because Instagram is recommending its newest feature, Reels, before all other content. As with all of Instagram’s latest updates, the algorithm is favouring this feature.

Create Reels to increase your following and to generate engagement with your content.

Reels posted from other platforms are less discoverable

Instagram Reels have often been compared to TikTok, a social media platform where users can share original short-form videos. As the two platforms are so similar, many content creators have reshared videos created on TikTok to Reels.

According to Instagram, low-quality videos that are blurry due to low resolution or content that is visibly recycled from other platforms and contain logos or watermarks make the Reels experience less satisfying. 

As a result, Instagram makes this content less discoverable in places such as the Reels tab.

Entertaining and funny Reels are prioritised

The Instagram algorithm’s primary purpose is to keep users engaged on the platform for as long as possible. This can be challenging when you consider that the average mobile user spends approximately 1.7 seconds on any piece of social media content. 

So how can Instagram keep their users engaged for longer? By constantly showing users entertaining, light and funny content.

Reels offer a short, ‘bite-sized’ format to share humorous content – the perfect length of time to keep users engaged and scrolling more.

How can your B2B business use Reels?

Your B2B business can use Reels to effectively grow followers, generate engagement and increase your exposure – for free.

Start by sharing educational content. Make a Reel showing your followers how to use your product, or how your service will improve your customer’s business.

Your followers also want to be inspired. To do this, show your followers encouraging before and after videos of how your business helped your customers. For example, if you’re in the health industry, create a Reel showing how your B2B business improved the health and wellbeing of others.

And finally, Reels are the perfect opportunity to create a connection with your followers. Showcase your brand’s personality and create funny, entertaining content with you and your staff.​

About Focus SME

Based in Sydney, Australia, Focus SME works with businesses to amplify their social media presence and increase leads through social media advertising. We specialise in B2B and service-based companies, assisting them to get the most out of their social media through clever B2B strategies and creative campaign executions.