Instagram Reels are a feature of Instagram that’s relatively new. While the social media platform has been around for a number of years, having launched in 2010 and then bought by Facebook in 2012, Reels are one of the more recent significant additions to the platform.
Reels have become a popular and prominent way to reach new followers today, and hashtags are an important part of this feature. In this article we’ll take a look at hashtags for Instagram Reels, how to use them and best practices.
What are Instagram Reels?
Reels are a video post format, unique to Instagram. As it has become clear that videos drive a much higher engagement over recent years, social media platforms have evolved to offer a video solution for posting. Instagram officially unveiled Reels in August 2020.
Originally Instagram Reels were just 15 seconds in length, later changed to 60 seconds, and in July of 2022, Instagram Reels were increased to 90 seconds in length. At launch, Instagram described Reels as:
“A new way to create and discover short, entertaining videos on Instagram.”Instagram.com
Instagram Reels are full screen vertical videos that harness the increasing use of mobile devices. They are ideal to post content that has been recorded on your mobile device, with little or no editing required.
Why use Instagram Reels?
Instagram Reels are a way to find new audiences and followers for your video content. With the increase in Reel length to 90 seconds in 2022, there’s significantly more options for what you can produce for your followers.
Due to the popularity of Instagram Reels in 2022, they are favourable for the Instagram algorithm, meaning there is more potential to reach far more followers than with conventional post types.
Reels have a dedicated section of the Instagram mobile app, enabling creators to get their video content found by new followers with relative ease. They also appear in a separate tab on an Instagram profile, helping the user to view previously posted Reels and analyse their organic reach.
Instagram Reels can be discovered under Hashtag searches, just like traditional posts. Using Hashtags within your Reels is therefore essential if you are looking to reach new users and grow your audience.
What’s the difference between Stories and Reels?
Instagram stories are designed to appear for 24 hours only, and can be a good way for businesses to promote a short term goal, such as a price reduction or limited product quantity sale.
Reels, like posts are searchable indefinitely, both on a user’s profile page, and under Hashtag searches.
Can Hashtags be used on Instagram Reels?
Using Hashtags on Instagram is how to get your content seen by new users, those who are not already following you. Reels utilise Hashtags in the same way that image posts do. They work as a way of cataloging similar content for relevant topics, which can then be found under that Hashtag search.
As Reels are a great way to engage new users with video, adding relevant hashtags is vital, to effectively tag your Reel to a relevant subject or topic.
Where do I add Hashtags on Reels?
Just like regular image posts, Instagram Reels offer the option to add a caption or description. This is where Hashtags should be added. Hashtags on Instagram are limited to 30 per post, which is more than generous when looking to use relevant Hashtags to compliment the topic of your new video Reel.
It’s important that hashtags are researched before posting to get the maximum effect and reach. While some Hashtags may be highly relevant, keep in mind if they are extremely broad or popular, the chances of getting found in searches is low for newer users with little post engagement history. It’s worth looking for Hashtags that similar accounts use, that have had high performing posts. Put yourself in the position of someone who would be interested in viewing your video; what do they like, what might their interests be, and what might they search for to find videos like yours
There are many Hashtag tools available online that allow you to analyse similar accounts, competitors, or related hashtags. These are a great resource to find tags that are relevant, without being too broad or competitive.
Can you add Hashtags to Reels after posting?
Hashtags for Instagram Reels work just as image posts do. Once a reel is posted, it is permanent until deleted, therefore it’s worth making the most of the Hashtags you use. Often it’s worth going back to your older Reels and seeing if the tags can be expanded, or switched for more relevant or more recently popular Hashtags.
Hashtags for Instagram Reels are an important factor in getting your video content seen by new users and growing your following. With the popularity of Instagram and the huge volumes of posts each day, it’s good to use Reels to create unique video content to stand out from your competitors. Take the time to research Hashtags before posting, and also don’t forget to come back to your Reels, to analyse the results and consider updating your Hashtags.
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