Ultimate Guide to Instagram Reels
Published On: January 20, 2022 Revised On: September 17, 2023

Ultimate Guide to Instagram Reels

Instagram Reels is a powerful video feature on the social media platform. It has transformed video creation and sharing. The function is a concise and engaging platform that fosters creativity, enhances audience connections, and offers growth opportunities. This guide covers everything from making the first Reel to advanced strategies.

What are Instagram Reels?

Instagram Reels is a feature within the Instagram app that allows users to create and share short video clips, typically ranging from 15 to 60 seconds in length. These videos are designed to be engaging, creative, and easily shareable. Reels provide a versatile platform for expressing yourself, sharing your passions, and connecting with a global audience. With a wide range of creative tools and editing options, you can craft entertaining and visually appealing content that resonates with your followers.

Instagram Reels is an engaging way to create video content. This video feature is available in 51 countries, including Singapore. Like TikTok, Instagram Reels allows users to record and edit 15 to 60-second video clips before adding music and sharing them to their Stories, Explore Feed, and the Reels tab on their profile. Instead of only seeing Reels from accounts you follow as you scroll, the Reels tab displays Reels from popular and trending Instagram accounts, similar to TikTok’s For You page. In addition to the new Reels tab, Reels can be found on the Explore page.

Why use Instagram Reels?

This reel function allows users to film video clips on the spot or upload a pre-edited video from their camera roll. Furthermore, the reels enable users to share a video with a long take or a mix of quick takes. Once users are satisfied with the clips, they can use Instagram’s draw and text tools and a variety of stickers. The privacy settings on user profiles determine who can see their reels. 

For instance, if the user’s profile is public, the reels will appear alongside the Reel tab on the Explore tab.  Businesses can use this to reach customers through promotional videos to explain their products or services. In addition, public reels can give businesses increased visibility and the opportunity to gain potential customers if they can jump on board with the latest trends.

There are several compelling reasons to use Instagram Reels. Reels can appear on the Explore page, making it easier for your content to reach a broader audience beyond your followers. Their short-form videos are highly engaging, and Reels can boost engagement rates, helping connect with the audience more interactively.

Reels also provide a canvas for creativity. Experiment with music, effects, filters, and editing tools to produce unique and entertaining content. Businesses can use Reels to promote products or services, tell brand stories, and connect with customers more personally.

Features of Instagram Reels

The following are some features of Instagram Reels:

  • Simple to Create: Creating videos usually takes significant time, effort, and money. On the other hand, Instagram Reels are simple to create because they are short videos and can be created directly from the app.
  • The reels are Permanent: Instagram already had a place to make short videos called Instagram Story. The only drawback is that stories expire after 24 hours unless saved as highlights. The fact that Instagram Reels are permanent content is a significant advantage.
  • Featured in their section on the Hashtag page: Instagram promotes its new features heavily among its users. Instagram Reels are featured in their section on the hashtag page. Tapping the hashtag at the bottom of the video will take users to other posts that contain the same hashtag. Using specific hashtags will help reach the target audience and allow users to find information easily.
  • Music Library: Access to an extensive library of music tracks, enhancing the audio experience of your videos.
  • Editing Toolbox: Robust editing tools for trimming, cutting, and reordering clips, adjusting playback speed, and adding captivating effects.
  • Interactive Elements: Including stickers, emojis, and text for heightened viewer engagement.
  • Insights and Analytics: Access to analytics for tracking Reels’ performance, including views, likes, shares, and more.
  • Collaborative Possibilities: The ability to collaborate through duets and remixes, fostering community engagement.
  • Discoverability: Enhanced discoverability through strategic hashtag usage and the possibility of landing on the Explore page.
  • Monetisation Prospects: Opportunities for monetisation through sponsored content and strategic brand partnerships.

How to Use Instagram Reels?

Creating an Instagram Reel is straightforward, allowing one to share short and engaging video content. In this section, we’ll walk through the steps to create a Reel, from the initial setup to adding music, effects, and filters.

  • Tap the camera icon in the top right corner to access reels via the Reels tab.
  • Instagram Reels can be accessed from the Instagram home screen. Open the app on the phone, tap on the plus sign ‘+’ in the top right corner, then scroll down to the Reels tab.
  • To make reels with the Instagram camera, open the camera and look for the reels icon, located between the normal and create modes, or near ‘Story’ in the bottom menu.

Shooting and Recording Options

There are two options for making reels on Instagram. To make reels, sign in to Instagram, open the Instagram camera, and select Reels. There is also an option to upload pre-recorded videos from your camera roll. Record video clips one at a time or all at once.

  • Record clips: To start recording, tap and hold the record button. Record multiple clips within the maximum Reel duration. Lift the finger to stop recording.
  • Delete or re-record: If you are unsatisfied with a clip, tap the trash icon to delete it or the back arrow to re-record it.
  • Align and adjust: To create smooth transitions between clips, use the align button to match the previous clip’s last frame with the next’s first frame.

Adding Music and Audio

  • Tap the music icon: To add music to the Reel, tap the music note icon on the left side of the screen.
  • Browse the music library: Search for specific songs, explore popular tracks, or use the “For You” and “Browse” sections to find suitable music.
  • Select the music: Once a preferred song is found, tap on it and adjust the start time and duration of the music clip.
  • Preview and adjust volume: Preview the Reel with the selected music and adjust the volume balance between the recorded audio and the music.

Using Effects and Filters

Editing and enhancing Instagram Reels is essential to creating captivating and polished content that resonates with the audience. By using editing and enhancement techniques, creators gain the ability to elevate the quality of Instagram Reels.

This results in content that captures the audience’s attention and encourages them to engage with and share Reels, ultimately increasing reach and impact on the platform. Whether creators tell compelling stories, share valuable tutorials, or showcase creative talents, these tools empower them to create Reels that stand out and leave a lasting impression.

Trimming and Splitting Clips

One of the fundamental editing techniques for Instagram Reels is trimming and splitting clips. Trimming allows for the removal of unwanted sections from clips, ensuring content remains concise and to the point. Splitting, on the other hand, lets creators create smooth transitions or insert new content between clips. These capabilities are invaluable for maintaining the pacing and flow of a Reel.

Rearranging Clips

Rearranging clips is another crucial aspect of editing Reels effectively. It allows for the crafting of a coherent narrative or the enhancement of the visual storytelling of content. By rearranging clips strategically, creators can create a Reel that captures the audience’s attention and keeps them engaged.

Speed Adjustments

Speed adjustments offer a creative dimension to Reels. Creators can either speed up or slow down clips to emphasise specific actions, create dramatic effects, or align content with a particular style or theme. This feature is particularly useful for tutorials, dance sequences, or any content that benefits from altering the pace.

Using AR Effects and Filters

Augmented Reality (AR) effects and filters provide a transformative element to Reels, enhancing their visual appeal. With a vast array of effects at creators’ disposal, they can add unique and captivating visuals to content. Filters, on the other hand, allow for modifying the mood and aesthetics of the video, giving it a distinct look and feel that matches a brand or the story being told.

Adding Stickers and Emojis

Stickers and emojis are expressive elements that can infuse personality and playfulness into Reels. Stickers can convey messages, celebrate moments, or add a whimsy to content. On the other hand, Emojis help express emotions or reactions within a Reel, making it more relatable to viewers.

How to Promote Instagram Reels?

Once the clips are recorded, music is added, and effects and filters are applied, the Instagram Reel is well on its way to being an engaging and visually appealing creation. When promoting an Instagram Reel, the first step is to enable the “Also Share To Feed” option. This will increase the number of people who see your Reel. 

After uploading a Reel, removing it from the profile grid can be selected by clicking “Remove from Profile Grid” while still boosting the post. The Reel will remain in the Instagram profile’s “Reels” section but will no longer clutter the feed. Second, striving to produce high-quality content is essential. As Instagram Reels are short videos, they should be entertaining and unique to capture viewer attention. Popular audio, flashy texts, or stickers can be used.

Crafting Compelling Content

Creating compelling content for Instagram Reels is crucial to engage the audience effectively. In this section, we’ll explore strategies for crafting engaging Reels.

Firstly, consider the Tips for Engaging Reel Content. Keeping Reels concise is essential. Short, attention-grabbing content tends to perform better. Utilise eye-catching visuals, vibrant colours, and high-resolution videos to captivate viewers. Start with an attention-grabbing hook in the initial seconds to keep the audience watching. Additionally, maintain a consistent narrative or theme throughout the Reel to retain viewer engagement.

Effective storytelling techniques are also key. A well-structured Reel typically includes a clear beginning, middle, and end. This structure builds anticipation and delivers a satisfying conclusion. Connect with the audience personally by creating content that evokes emotion and relatability. Show, don’t tell – use visuals and actions to convey the message rather than relying solely on narration.

Next, consider Leveraging Trends and Challenges. Stay informed about what’s currently trending in the Reels community. Participate in popular challenges and trends, adding a unique twist to stand out. Creating content relevant to current events or seasons can also boost discoverability.

Lastly, let’s talk about Audience Engagement Strategies. Interacting with the audience is essential for fostering a sense of community. Respond to comments on Reels to encourage engagement. Use Call to Action (CTA) prompts to ask viewers to like, share, comment, or follow the account for more content. Engage the audience by posing questions or creating polls within Reels. Collaborate with other creators or influencers to expand their reach and connect with new audiences.

By implementing these strategies, one can enhance the ability to create Instagram Reels that capture viewers’ attention and encourage them to interact with and share the content, ultimately growing the presence on the platform.

Hashtags and Descriptions

Hashtags and descriptions help in boosting the reach and engagement of Instagram Reels. They help content get discovered by a broader audience, connect with trends, and engage with followers effectively. By choosing relevant hashtags and crafting compelling descriptions, one can maximise the impact of Reels on the platform. Hashtags are pivotal in making Instagram Reels discoverable to a broader audience.

When users search for or click on a particular hashtag, they can find all posts and Reels that include that tag. Relevant hashtags increase the likelihood of Reels being discovered by users interested in similar content, even if they don’t follow an account. Hashtags help categorise content, making it easier for users interested in specific niches to find Reels.

Choosing Relevant Hashtags

Selecting the right hashtags can significantly impact Reel performance. Look for hashtags relevant to the content and popular within the niche. Instagram’s search bar and Explore page can help identify trending hashtags. Use a mix of broad and niche-specific hashtags. While broad ones reach a larger audience, niche tags connect with a more targeted and engaged community. If applicable, create and use branded hashtags unique to the content or brand. This fosters community engagement and helps users find related content easily.

Crafting Effective Descriptions

The description paired with Reels is an opportunity to provide context, engage the audience, and encourage actions. Explain what the Reel is about. A brief and informative description can give viewers a reason to watch. Encourage engagement with clear CTAs. Ask viewers to like, comment, share, or follow the account.

Emojis can add personality and flair to descriptions. Use them to complement the message. Also, use line breaks to make the description visually appealing and easier to read. If relevant, tag the location. This can increase visibility for users searching for content in that area.


As Reels become an increasingly important part of the Instagram user experience, it is expected to see more in-app video editing tools, algorithm disclosure, and insights. Furthermore, Instagram Reels allows marketers to tag onto the most popular trends, increasing visibility awareness and allowing businesses to gain new prospects.

ARCC provides effective social media marketing services. Our team delivers results, from content creation to brand visibility. We are dedicated to crafting effective strategies that drive engagement, boost brand visibility, and deliver tangible results. Our tailored solutions are designed to help harness the full potential of social media platforms, including Instagram Reels. Whether you’re seeking to create compelling content, optimize your ad campaigns, or enhance your online presence, we can help elevate your social media marketing.