Ideal Instagram Reel Size and Dimensions for Best Results (2024) 

Instagram remains one of the most popular social media platforms in 2024, with more than 2 billion active users. The app’s Reels feature gives you an effective way to connect with potential customers using entertaining short-form videos. With an average reach of 30.8%, Reels are one of the best ways to find new followers and introduce them to your brand. 

So what’s the best way to connect with audiences using Reels? What size should they be, and how should you use them? Here, we’ll walk through the ideal Instagram Reel size and best practices to help you get more views on Instagram

Instagram Reel Size

Reels are displayed vertically on a user’s phone or computer. Optimize your videos by using content with a minimum resolution of 720 pixels and a minimum rate of 30 frames per second. Uploading a smaller video could make it appear blurry to your followers. For best results, stick with videos that are 1080 by 1920 pixels so they display correctly on mobile devices. 

Instagram Reel Dimensions (Aspect Ratio)

Aspect ratio refers to the proportion of an image’s width to its height. Instagram Reels should use a 9:16 aspect ratio. If you upload a video that doesn’t meet this aspect ratio, Instagram will automatically resize it, which could affect the quality. 

How To Create an Instagram Reel

Instagram Reels should be short and easy to consume and share. Follow these steps for how to make a Reel on Instagram that helps you achieve your marketing goals. 

1. Plan Your Content

Start with your business goals. Your Reels will be different depending on whether you intend to build brand awareness, engage with existing customers, or have a different goal entirely. Before you start shooting, create a list of all the content you plan on sharing during your Instagram marketing campaign. 

Make a list of content topics and your intent for each video. Reels are great for educating, entertaining, and engaging your audience. Whatever you decide, start planning your locations and making pre-production checklists for your videos. Make storyboards and write scripts to shorten your shooting time and ensure everyone on the team stays on the same page. 

2. Produce Your Video

Instagram lets you create Reels directly in the app, or you can use pre-existing videos. If you want your videos to look more polished and professional, shoot them first so you can watch them and make edits before they go live. 

Shoot your video production using appealing imagery. Since you have a limited amount of time to catch your audience’s attention, you have to hook them at the very beginning of the video. You could start by posing a question or showcasing the end result of a process before outlining the steps you took to get there. 

3. Finalize the Details

Once you’ve filmed your video, edit it to your desired Instagram video length and add the final details. Take advantage of captions to boost your search engine rankings, and use hashtags to help people find your Reel. Add music or trending sounds to make it more engaging. To promote accessibility and engage people watching your video without sound, add closed captioning and other visual details.

4. Share Your Video

When you’re happy with the finished product, share it. In the Instagram app, click the “+” button and choose the Reels option from the bottom menu. Select your video from your library and share it. Add your captions, hashtags, and other details to get the broadest possible reach. You’ll also want to make sure you tag any other people who are included or involved in the post. If you’re posting an interview with a business partner, for example, make sure you tag them in your Reel. 

5. Monitor, Test, Repeat!

As you post more Reels on your feed, you’ll get a better understanding of what your audience wants to see. You can use testing strategies — like multivariate testing — to see how your content performs. 

Take note of emerging trends and use them to guide your future content. Your audience may be drawn to a certain type of content, such as question-and-answer sessions or instructional videos. As you learn more about your audience and the content types they enjoy the most, you’ll be able to use the data to adjust your content strategy. 

Instagram Reel Algorithm, Explained

Instagram curates each user’s “For You” page based on how they engage with other posts on the platform (among other things). Your videos are more likely to pop up on users’ feeds if they’re interested in your brand or if they engage with similar content. 

The Instagram algorithm is actually made up of several formulas, classifiers, and processes to match content with potentially interested users. The program will evaluate your hashtags and other cues in your content to determine which users would most likely want to see it. 

Best Time To Post on Instagram Reels

Knowing the best time to post on Instagram helps you reach more users. By posting when your target audience is most active on the site, you’re more likely to get matched with more viewers. In general, Instagram users are most active around 7 a.m. and around lunchtime (between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m.) during the week. On the weekends, users tend to be more active in the evening, between 7 p.m. and 9 p.m.

While these times are great places to start, you shouldn’t strictly stick to them — especially if your posts aren’t reaching as many people as you’d like. Experiment by posting at various times throughout the day to see what works for your audience. Over time, you’ll notice when your posts are getting higher levels of engagement and you’ll be able to adjust your strategy as necessary. 

Instagram Reels Tips & Best Practices

Capture even more new followers by taking advantage of these best practices. 

Leverage Trending Sounds and Challenges

Since the Reels feature is Instagram’s answer to other short-form video platforms (hey there, TikTok), you can add music and various sounds to your videos. In the app, when you’re posting a new Reel, click “Templates.” This will take you to a list of various sounds and topics that are currently trending

Sounds can be anything from a popular song to a line from a movie or TV show or even audio from another social media video. Scroll through what’s trending and find a sound that complements your video. You can also look through your “For You” page or search for specific topics to find popular Reels. 

Showcase Creativity With Editing Tools

Use an editor to make sure your Reels have the best pacing and flow to keep your audience hooked. Add advanced transitions and effects to give your video a more polished, professional look. Many editing tools let you add animation to your videos as well, which is a great way to engage people who may be watching your videos with the sound off. 

Tell a Story or Share Value

Tell a compelling story to build a relationship with your audience and help viewers remember your brand. Know your target viewers and note what they value about your brand so you can tell relevant stories and create videos that resonate with them. 

You can also share your take on different topics in your field to educate your viewers and provide them with value. Mix static images or infographics into your videos to tell a visual story. 

Plan a Clear Call-to-Action (CTA)

Every interaction with your audience should be intentional. Often, this means you’ll want to include a call to action to get viewers to engage with you. A basic Instagram Reels CTA could be as simple as asking viewers to like your post or follow you on the platform. If you’re sharing promotional videos on Reels, encourage viewers to check out your website and take advantage of your deals. 

Plan and Schedule Content

Like other social media platforms, the key to growing your Instagram audience with Reels is consistency. Add Instagram Reels to your social media calendar to keep your audience on its toes. Your page should offer a mix of topics and video types, such as static images, Reels, and In-Feed videos. 

Following a content schedule helps you organize your content so you don’t duplicate posts or leave your page stagnant. Use your schedule to connect your different social media profiles and post Reels that build on what you’re posting elsewhere. 

Instagram Reel Mistakes To Avoid

Create a strong presence on the platform by avoiding these common mistakes. 

Neglecting Video Quality

Although you can post videos smaller than the recommended video specs, this can negatively impact your video quality. Smaller videos can appear blurry or pixelated, making them less engaging for your followers. Plus, low-quality videos could make people see you as unprofessional. 

Not Using Variety in Your Reels

Mixing up the style and content of your Reels helps you attract a more diverse audience. It also keeps your existing followers engaged. Instead of posting one type of video every single time, switch it up. Post behind-the-scenes videos, product spotlight videos, instructional videos, and other types of educational content instead of simply addressing your followers with the same kind of video every day. 

Overlooking Captions

If you don’t include captions with your videos, the algorithm will take a lot longer to understand your content. By including a clear and concise description with accompanying hashtags, you’ll be able to get your Reels to relevant audiences much faster, increasing your chances of reaching more people. 

Being Too Promotional

While you can absolutely promote your products or services on Instagram Reels, avoid posting videos that act as a full-on sales pitch. Instead of filming a Reel as though it were a 30-second commercial, subtly highlight your offering’s benefits and focus on telling a compelling story. 

You can reinforce your brand’s image by using cues such as fonts and colors that tie into your brand. Make sure you use the same brand voice in each video, no matter who appears in it. Your feed should be cohesive and recognizable — but it doesn’t have to be perfectly polished. Authenticity goes a long way on social media in 2024. 

Ignoring Analytics and Insights

Meta analytics offers you a glimpse into your audience and content performance. If you ignore them and keep posting the same videos, you risk losing your audience. Instead, pay attention to the analytics to see which videos are working. 

After analyzing your videos’ performance for a while, you should start to see trends that you can use to optimize your Instagram Reels strategy. You may find that the topics you thought would interest your audience the most aren’t getting the same level of engagement as others. Use the data to develop your content calendar and experiment with different videos. 

Create Engaging Instagram Reels at Scale

High-quality Reels help you stand out on Instagram. However, consistently producing, editing, and posting high-quality videos may seem like a lot of work. Fortunately, QuickFrame connects you with video makers who know what works on social media, including Meta platforms such as Instagram. 

We offer an agile, streamlined video production process so you can create the social media video content you need. Contact us today to learn more about our Instagram video production services. 

Instagram Reel Size and Dimensions: Final Thoughts

Video content is an effective social media marketing tool for building your brand and attracting new customers — and Instagram Reels are an easy way to create and share videos with a broad user base. Following best practices, such as using the proper video size and aspect ratios, can help you curate a high-quality social media presence that engages your target audience. 

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