Thanks to the phenomenal success of TikTok, Instagram launched its own competitor – Reels. Here’s what you need to know about the difference between them, and how to take advantage of both.
Instagram Reels have a 30-second limit, while on TikTok, you get a full 60 seconds to make your mark if recording via the app. If you upload a video recorded elsewhere, TikTok is allowing up to three minutes of video for certain accounts.
There are positives and negatives to both – after all, if you can make a clear and concise point in 30 seconds, that’s always going to be more attention grabbing than a longer, more rambling video. However, sometimes, you need that little bit of extra time to make an idea shine, so TikTok’s extra seconds can be very useful.
Reels and TikTok both offer filters and voiceovers, as well as the ability to add text and captions. However, as it’s been built purely for this kind of video, TikTok offers far more editing options, including voice effects and a range of additional templates.
Reels recently introduced the Remix feature, much like TikTok’s Duet feature, which allows you to take another video and react or interact with it. TikTok is still far ahead when it comes to mixing and matching content though – its Stitch feature allows you to take someone else’s video and incorporate it directly into your own.
TikTok offers you a massive library of music that you can use for whatever purpose, but Instagram won’t let businesses utilise its music library for copyright purposes. So, if you want to feature music in a Reel, you need to record the video with the music already in the background.
TikTok offers full analytics for its videos, with a comprehensive overview . However, Instagram’s analytics are woefully behind (and always have been), and at the moment, there are no specific analytics for Reels and you only have likes, shares and comments to go off. So if you’re reliant on data to make decisions, TikTok might be the way to go.
Sharing Reels on Instagram gives you the advantage of being able to stick it your Stories and main feed as well as sending via direct message and hosting it within the specific Reels section, so you can spread the video far and wide. Plus, you can post it directly to specific social networks like Facebook and Twitter as well.
TikTok, as a platform purely for video, doesn’t have as many spaces for your video to go in, but it wasn’t designed for that. However, its native sharing feature is more comprehensive, letting you share to Whatsapp or even Instagram Stories straight away.
In either case, you can download the videos and then cross-post onto the network of your choice once you’ve done all the work, giving you the ultimate control on where the video goes.
Both TikTok and Instagram Reels have advantages and disadvantages. If you want more flexibility on your videos, then TikTok is the clear choice, but if you already have a great Instagram following and want to build on it, then we’d stick with Reels. In either case, you need to have the time, resources and creativity to make sure your videos are a hit.
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