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What’s New in Paid Social: Instagram Reels Ads

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What’s new in paid social? Short-form video content is all the rage thanks to TikTok, and Instagram is trying to get in on the action. They are now offering Reels Ads, which are video ads in vertical format that will be served in between other Reels content. They can be up to 30 seconds long and engagement from viewers can be in the form of likes, views, saves and shares. So, how can your brand take advantage of this new opportunity? Let’s take a closer look!

Should your brand use Reels Ads? When?
As with any new form of marketing, it’s always important to determine if it’s the right place for your brand. A few things to consider are demographics, budget, content availability and monitoring. You’ll want to make sure that your target audience is already on Instagram. You’ll also need to create content specifically for Reels Ads (no repurposing other video, especially if it’s been filmed in a horizontal format). This takes time, energy and budget. Then, you’ll need budget for media placement and to monitor and react to any engagement your content receives. If you can meet all these requirements, then Reels Ads might be right for your brand, and you can start with a test run. If your brand doesn’t meet these conditions, you might want to take a pause and see how Reels Ads shake out before jumping in.

What metrics matter?
Before moving forward with your Reels Ads placements, consider your brand goals. Do the metrics available through Reels Ads support your initiatives? Reels Ads allow tracking of things like conversions, link clicks and engagement. This is good for brand awareness campaigns or driving traffic to another link or website. However, as of right now, it’s not geared for e-commerce goals. It’s important to take stock of your brand initiatives and make sure that the currently available functionality and metrics fit your needs.

How to create Reels Ads
If you think your brand is a good fit for Reels Ads, they are already available in the U.S., so you can start placements as soon as you can ramp up strategy, budget and creative content. Here’s a quick guide to content creation through the Instagram app:

  1. Access the Instagram app on your phone or mobile device.
  2. Click the camera icon.
  3. Scroll through the options at the bottom until you get to Reels.
  4. Use the large button at the bottom in the middle to start recording once everything is set up. You can also use this button to pause and resume filming.
  5. There are four buttons on the left navigation to help you make your Reels more exciting. Try incorporating music, changing the speed of your video, including effects or utilizing the timer to help you add some pizzaz to your shots.
  6. Use the button at the bottom right with the arrow to move to the next section for editing.
  7. If you want, you can also upload an existing video with the Upload feature and edit it within the app. Make sure that your videos are in vertical format, as you want them to look native to the platform.

Are Instagram Reels Ads right for your brand? Do you need help creating a Reels Ads strategy? Give us a call to connect with one of our branding or social media experts!