Knowing how to hack the Instagram Reels algorithm is a huge advantage for anyone looking to grow on Instagram right now.
Why? Reels are one of the hottest growth hacks on the app — and they’re showing no signs of slowing down.
Discover everything you need to know in this blog post:
How Does the Instagram Reels Algorithm Work?
Instagram’s Reels Algorithm has been a bit of a mystery, especially when it comes to what’s shown as a suggested post, or in the Reels Explore tab.
But in a recent post, Instagram shared that the algorithm will depriorititize content that is visibly recycled from other apps (such as TikTok), as well as low-quality video content.
In particular, Instagram said it will make content with visible watermarks or logos from other apps less discoverable in places like the Reels tab.
Essentially, this update means that recycled or blurry content will be harder for audiences to discover — and will therefore receive less views.
This is a direct move by Instagram to prevent creators from cross-promoting TikTok videos on Instagram — a move that isn’t surprising when you consider how closely the two apps are competing for the same audience.
Instagram also confirmed that it’s prioritizing “entertaining, funny, and interesting content” in recommended Reels suggestions.
How to Hack the Instagram Reels Algorithm
Now we know what the Reels algorithm prefers, we can use this insight to update our content strategy and gain an advantage.
According to Instagram, brands and creators should post Reels that:
Are entertaining and fun (i.e. delights people, grabs their attention, makes them laugh, or has a fun surprise or twist)
Are inspiring (i.e. starts a trend that others can easily participate in)
Use creative tools like text, filter, or camera effects
Use vertical video
Use music from the Instagram music library and/or original audio you create or find on Reels
Are experimental! Try something new, be yourself, and see what works for you
On the flipside, Instagram advises that brands and creators should not post Reels that:
Are blurry due to low-resolution
Are visibly recycled from other apps (i.e, contains logos or watermarks)
Are uploaded with a border around them
Have the majority of the image covered by text
Do not meet Instagram’s Community Guidelines
By following these Instagram Reels tips directly from Instagram, you’ll stand a better chance of hacking the algorithm, reaching new audiences, and increasing your follower count.
Ready to jump in and create your first Instagram Reel? Here are our top 5 resources on the Later blog to help you get started:
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