Instagram Reels are 15-second multi-clip videos with audio or music. The videos loop and you can choose to show them in your main Instagram feed, on Stories, or both. Reels is Instagram’s version of TikTok and they’re a fun, casual way to create content. Why are Reels worth experimenting with? In our experience, the Instagram algorithm rewards accounts that use new features. Plus, Reels has its own Explore Feed on Instagram (similar to the TikTok For You page), so if you create a Reel and share it there, your Reel could very well bring new traffic and followers to your account. Exciting!
Before you begin, we recommend watching some Reels to get a feel for what creators are making so you can gather some ideas. We’ve seen craft businesses use Reels for:
- Quick DIYs or how-to instructions
- Demonstrating styling handmade garments
- A look at favorite tools and supplies
- Behind the scenes glimpses (at a photoshoot, showing pieces coming out a kiln, longarm quilting, etc.)
Let’s get started
Once you have your idea in mind, it’s time to get started creating an Instagram Reel. To find Instagram Reels, open Instagram Stories and you’ll see the new Reels icon. Click it to open the Reels menu. Now you’re ready to make an Instagram Reel.t
If you find a Reel with music you like, tap on it and click “use audio.” (Sometimes taking part in a trend can help you get more traffic.) Or, you can record your own audio track or select from Instagram’s audio library. (If you record a Reel with your own audio, it will be attributed to you and other people will be able to create a Reel with your audio.)
When you’re ready to film your Reel, you can record it all at once, or in clips. You can hold down the record button or film hands-free using the timer to predetermine how long your clip will be. Set the timer and you’ll see a countdown and then the recording will start. Film each clip and then string them together until your Reel is 15 seconds long. Use the “align” feature to line up all your clips for a seamless transition. Don’t worry if one clip doesn’t come out well. You can delete just that one and redo it. If one aspect of your video is very long, use the “speed” tool to speed it up.
Once you have all your clips completed, edit your video right in Reels by adding special effects (try using the green screen to superimpose your product in an unexpected place, for example), text, and stickers.
Now it’s time to choose a cover photo for your Reel. Either select one from your video, or upload a photo from your camera roll. You can now share your Reel to Stories, your main Instagram feed, and the Explore Feed. Write a caption and use hashtags so that your Reel can get found, just like you would for a regular post.
That’s it! You’re on your way to using Instagram Reels for your craft business.
Join us for the Reels Challenge!
From September 14-25 the Craft Industry Alliance community will be challenging each other to give Reels a try and cheering each other on along the way! We can’t wait to see what you create.