Instagram Reels: The TikTokification Of IG

Everyone’s favourite photo-sharing platform, Instagram, has undergone several changes in recent years. The biggest change is arguably the type of content being shared. The introduction of one of it’s biggest changes, Instagram Reels, was met with mixed reactions from users – some embraced the new feature while others lamented the ‘TikTokification of Instagram’. Let’s dive deeper into the matter, shall we?

What Was Instagram Initially For?

Instagram was created in 2010 as a photo-sharing platform with a simple interface and a focus on square-shaped images. It quickly became popular and was eventually acquired by Facebook (now Meta) in 2012.

Over the years, Instagram added several new features, such as filters, hashtags, and stories, to enhance the user experience. Despite this, the platform remained a photo-sharing one.

What Are Instagram Reels?

Fast-forward to 2020 – the platform introduced Instagram Reels, a feature that allows users to create and upload short-form videos similar to those found on TikTok. Plus, it’s so simple to create Reels directly from the Instagram app. Instagram users can simply select the Reels option from the Instagram camera, and then record and edit their video.

The Instagram app offers a range of editing tools to create seamless transitions. Users can even use features such as music from the Instagram music library, text, filters, and AR effects to enhance their video content. Users can even record videos earlier, and later combine multiple clips from your camera roll to complete their creation.

Once the Reel is complete, it can be shared on the user’s profile, as well as on the Instagram Reel tab in the Explore section, where it has the potential to be discovered by a wider audience.

With the introduction of Reels, Instagram has provided users a new way to express their creativity and connect with others through short-form video content. 

Yes, there are many exciting benefits. So, why is it so hotly debated?

Instagram Reels: The TikTok Killer?

Will Instagram Reels Overtake TikTok In Popularity?

Source: Freepik

This marked a significant shift in Instagram’s strategy, as it began to prioritise video content over photos. The app’s algorithm began promoting Reels heavily on users’ Instagram Feed and their very own Reels Tab, with the hope of attracting more users to use the feature on the platform, making them in direct competition with TikTok.

TikTok has emerged as a major player in the social media landscape. Itts short-form and entertaining videos attracting millions of users worldwide. Instagram recognised the potential of this format and decided to incorporate it into its platform. By doing so, Instagram hoped to retain its user base and attract new users who were increasingly more attracted to video content.

This isn’t the first time Instagram has adopted a feature from a competitor. In 2016, Instagram introduced Stories, a feature that allowed users to temporarily share photos and videos that disappear after 24 hours.

This feature was heavily inspired by Snapchat’s own Stories, which had become wildly popular among younger users. Instagram effectively stole a significant portion of Snapchat’s user base – Snapchat’s growth slowed down by 82% after the launch of Instagram Stories.

Critical Reception Of Instagram Reels

Instagram’s adoption of Reels was seen as an attempt to replicate the success it had with Stories, but it hasn’t quite worked out that way. Despite Instagram’s efforts, TikTok continues to grow in popularity, with its user base surpassing 1 billion in 2021. While Reels has gained some traction on Instagram, it hasn’t had the same impact as TikTok.

Instagram’s shift towards video content has been met with mixed reactions. Some users have embraced Reels and the opportunity to create short-form videos, while others have criticised the move, feeling that Instagram has lost its identity as a photo-sharing platform. Critics argue that Instagram is sacrificing its core user base for the sake of chasing TikTok’s success.

Will Instagram Stop Focusing On Videos?

Instagram CEO Adam Mosseri admitted on his personal profile that the platform had been pushing too many videos on its users, leaving a number of photographers upset. He stated that “photos will always be a part of Instagram” and that they “overfocused” on pushing videos recently.

Mosseri is now focused on finding the best of both worlds, to ensure Instagram remains true to its roots as a photo-sharing platform while still embracing new features and trends. 

What’s The Best Way For You To Market On Instagram?

Since short videos are clearly gaining traction, businesses may need to utilise more of this format to appeal to customers. If you are looking to do this on Instagram, there are several strategies that you can use to maximise your reach and engagement. Firstly, it is important to create a consistent and visually appealing brand aesthetic, which can attract and retain followers.

Additionally, utilising Instagram’s various features, such as Instagram Reels, photos, Stories, and IGTV can help to showcase your products and services in a creative and engaging way.

At Primal Digital Agency Malaysia, we offer a range of digital marketing services, including social media marketing to help businesses like yours achieve their marketing goals. Our team of experienced professionals can implement an effective social media advertising strategy that is tailored to your business needs.

Contact us today to find out how we can help you succeed in the digital space with our full range of digital marketing services including pay-per-click ads and SEO services.