Reels on Instagram (and on Facebook) are getting a lot of press lately. And for good reason. Meta has gone ALL IN on this content format. They are rewarding content creators with more exposure and opportunity to reach new audiences.
But are they worth it?
I recently read an interesting article that talked about the overall ROI and benefits of Reels, and I have to say, I agree.
Overall, many brands are seeing the “value” in Reels – but only at top of funnel. They are great for new exposure and getting content in front of people on IG. But are they converting? Are they driving conversions? For the most part, no. And certainly not directly.
Top of funnel on IG means getting lots of eyeballs on your content and maybe getting some followers. It’s exposure generating content.
The Reels that are getting the most exposure, in general, tend to be entertainment content – funny videos, trending dances, quirky thoughts, etc. They’re real, honest, and great content. But are they doing much for your business besides getting people to watch a video?
The best videos for this top of funnel aspect also tend to be short. Like 7 seconds short. How much are you really conveying about your brand in 7 seconds?
I’ve also been finding in my research and conversations with various other people that followers that come from Reels are super quick to unfollow. If they find your cute fun video and follow you, but don’t connect with your next video or other content in their feed, they’re quick to unfollow you. So you ride the roller coaster of follows and unfollows.
And let’s face it, if these new users are only finding you from entertainment and are quick to unfollow, are they really your ideal customer? They aren’t likely to purchase when you have your next launch or product promotion. They aren’t likely to run over to your YouTube channel to watch a webinar or interview you did.
So this all sounds pretty doom and gloom, right?
Are Reels really worth it?
But be strategic and be cognizant of how they perform and what you should expect from them.
You should consider two types of Reels.
- Short (under 15 seconds) for new exposure primarily
- Long (up to 60 seconds) for interacting with your existing audience
Those short Reels are more likely to show up in more places on Instagram and can be light, easy, top of funnel content. Create them with that purpose in mind.
Those longer Reels should be more information, more about your brand, more about your products and services. These should serve to augment what your followers know about you and your brand. They should offer solutions, tips, help, insights, details, and more.
And then you need to remember the rest of your Instagram strategy – feed photos, feed videos, carousel posts, Stories, etc. Keep using THIS content to further your actual brand goals – like driving website clicks and generating leads and sales.
Reels work, yes. But you cannot go all in exclusively on this content. You cannot ignore the other types of content that support your overall brand goals. But you can use Reels to help build awareness and exposure as you look to grow your audience and build your overall Instagram strategy.