MasterWing Creative Agency Delray Beach

How to Use Instagram Reels for Your Small Business or Nonprofit

Are you getting addicted to watching Reels? If not, you’re missing out. Reels are short videos to inform, entertain and grow your audience. Instagram Reels, like all videos, are growing and capturing the attention of all types of audiences – most likely, including your ideal audience! If you’re not using Reels as part of your social media strategy, you’re missing opportunities to get in front of new audiences and connect with your current audience where they’re spending most of their time – watching videos! 

What Are Instagram Reels?

The simple answer is that Reels are short videos that offer users the opportunity to show

  • trends and creativity
  • participate in viral challenges
  • share moments in your day, products or services that you offer

Reels offer a range of different features that enhance the short videos you create with music, text overlays, AR effects, and more. Plus, they can be used by individuals, nonprofits, events or businesses. You can record and edit 15 to 60-second Reel clips and add trending music and add filters or text.

Reels are suggested to Instagram users based on their interests, and the information you include in the Reel clip such as #hashtags. 

How to Create an Instagram Reel

Reels are shared with both your followers and can be shared to Explore, so they can be found and seen by anyone. The good news is that it’s super simple to create a Reel. Once you decide on your Reel story strategy (goal, topic, text, hashtags, 

There are 3 ways to create a Reel on Instagram. To create an Instagram Reel, follow these steps:

  1. To create a Reel from the Reels tab on Instagram, tap the Reels video play icon at the bottom of your Instagram screen, then press the camera icon on the top right corner.
  2. Create a Reel from the Instagram home screen by tapping the “+” on the top right corner, then scroll to the Reels tab on the dropdown menu.
  3. Create an Instagram Reel using the Instagram Stories camera menu by opening the Instagram Stories camera, tapping the gear icon and choosing Reels from as your camera setting. 

You’ll see a variety of creative editing tools on the left side of your screen to help create your Reel, including:

  • Audio:
    Search for a song from the Instagram music library. You can also use your own original audio by simply recording a Reel with it. When you share a Reel with original audio, your audio will be attributed to you, and if you have a public account, people can create Reels with your audio by selecting “Use Audio” from your Reel.
  • AR Effects:
    Select one of the many AR filters in our effect gallery, created both by Instagram and creators all over the world, to record multiple clips with different effects. ​​Augmented reality (AR) effects are computer-generated filters that you can add to your Reel videos.
  • Timer and Countdown:
    Set the timer to record any of your clips hands-free. Once you press record, you’ll see a 3-2-1 countdown, before recording begins for the amount of time you selected.
  • Align:
    Line up objects from your previous clip before recording your next to help create seamless transitions for moments like outfit changes or adding new friends into your Reel.
  • Speed:
    Choose to speed up or slow down part of the video or audio you selected. This can help you stay on a beat or make slow motion videos.

Reels can be recorded in a series of clips (one at a time), all at once or using video uploads from your gallery. Record the first clip by pressing and holding the capture button. You’ll see a progress indicator at the top of the screen as you record. Stop recording to end each clip. 


Reels Tips and Best Practices
If you want to use these Reels to enhance your business, there are a few things to keep in mind:

  • Make it fun
    People want to be entertained on social media so make sure you are creating a video that people will enjoy watching.
  • Use audio
    Include your voice, trending music and other audio effects for people who watch videos with the sound ON. 
  • Make it fit your brand
    You already spent a lot of time creating a brand voice and message. Don’t undo all of that hard work by creating a video that doesn’t fit the image you want to portray.
  • Customize it
    You want to include text overlays, stickers, #hashtags and most definitely audio in your video. All of these components make the video more fun and get people more interested and engaged.
  • KISS
    Keep It Short and Simple – people have a short attention span so 30 seconds or less is good for Reels. Reels can be up to 60 seconds long. 
  • Do not repost from TikTok or other apps – If you want an engaged following on Instagram and TikTok, do not repost TikTok videos to Reels. Instagram’s algorithm searches for watermarks from other apps to ensure that content is less likely to appear in the trending Reels tab.


What To Post

If you’re new to Reels and are looking for some ideas on what to post on your new videos, here are some ideas:

  • Behind the scenes look at your business, team or event
  • New product demonstrations and tutorials
  • Meet your team members
  • Quotes, motivations and humor 
  • Special events, sales and announcements
  • Quick tips on your business, for your customers or about your services
  • Sneak peeks at coming events or services


Building a Following with Instagram Reels

How can you build your following using these Reels? The first thing is that you have to create them. Don’t let this trend pass you by when it’s getting so much attention from Instagram users everywhere.

Then, make sure you’re following the Reels tips we outlined above. By creating content that matches your brand and is unique and fun, you ensure that the people who see your video are going to want to like it, share it or talk about it to others.

And that’s where we find the final piece. How do you make sure people see your Reel? 

  • Your Instagram followers will automatically see it.
  • Post a link to your Reel on other social media channels
  • Use hashtags
  • Reply back to comments so Instagram shows your video to more people. 

When it comes to anything on social media the number one goal is engagement: getting people to watch, like, comment and share. The more you interact with the people who are trying to interact with you, the more likely your post is to reach a larger audience.

Social media channel algorithms assume that if a lot of people are interacting with your post it must be good. So by encouraging people to comment and then responding back, you’re increasing your engagement and your visibility, which boosts you higher in the recommended and explore sections of Instagram.


Are You Ready to Get Started Posting Reels?

When it comes to building your business or non-profit, the most important thing is to strategically use the tools at your disposal. Instagram Reels is a fun new way to make you and your brand stand out and feel more human, more relatable and more… fun!

If you want to jump on the Reels trend but you’re too busy to take on more social media, give us a call at MasterWing Creative Agency to discuss your social media strategy and how we can help.