Instagram Reel Trends for 2024

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Today, no one is a stranger to social media. 

With over 4.26 billion active social network users or roughly half the world’s population, these disruptive media technologies are bringing together people from all walks of life and are giving “outsider” voices a chance to be heard over the roar of the elites. 

Social media platforms also facilitate the creation and dissemination of ideas, interests, and information and have become an inseparable part of our lives.

Out of a myriad of such networking websites, Instagram—a Meta product—has grown into a top social media platform and is currently tied for the third-most popular social network worldwide. 

What are Instagram Reels, and why are they so popular?

Launched in 2010, Instagram, Insta, or IG, is a social media platform where users can curate and share visual content, such as photos and videos, with their followers. 

At over 1.3 billion monthly active users, or about 30% of the world’s internet users, Insta is working consistently to become more user-friendly by adding new features and upgrading existing ones. In its quest to become better and offer more value to its users, Instagram revolutionized content consumption when it introduced Reels in August 2020

Anyone can use reels to:

  • Record original content. 
  • Edit with added audio, captions, stickers, original audio or a song, AR effects, and/or adjusted alignment and speed. 
  • Share with their friends or other Instagrammers directly from the platform. 

Reels can be up to 90 seconds long when recorded in the IG app. Reels can be up to 15 minutes long if you upload a pre-recorded video.

Instagram added the Reels feature to provide people with a new and exciting way of expressing themselves, a faster and easier way of discovering fresh content, and a trusted platform for anyone interested in becoming a creator. 

This feature is a hit amongst the masses, but can businesses use and benefit from it? Let’s find out.

Two dancers recording a video for one of many Instagram reel trends

Can businesses use and benefit from Instagram Reels?

Since Reels are Instagram’s most popular feature, it’s a no-brainer that businesses must adopt them as part of their social media marketing strategy for 2024. Boasting a 57.4% YoY growth in usage, Reels are essential if you want to branch into new markets.

The best part? Reels don’t disappear after 24 hours like Stories, making your content immortal until you delete it. Reels also help businesses: 

  • Increase brand awareness and connect with a larger customer base since Reels are reachable even if someone is not following you.
  • Seem more approachable to engage existing consumers and reel in new ones.
  • Build a loyal community leveraging features, such as comments and remixes.
  • Cultivate brand value and style with engaging, immersive, and funny or impactful reels.
  • Collaborate with creators to take advantage of influencer marketing.
  • Make products shoppable with the help of product tags.

Although Reels is considered a goldmine for businesses, it will only positively impact your bottom line if you know how to make your business account stand out from over 200 million business accounts on Insta.

11 Instagram Reel trends you need to look out for in 2024

To keep your social media content calendar updated, keep a finger on the Instagram Reel trends pulse. Here are a few trends that are set to take over Instagram in 2024:

1. Check out location-based reels.

With Reels’ “Nearby” feed, it’s easier than ever to connect with your community and see what activities, restaurants, and events are hot in your area. This is great for local influencers hoping to speak to the neighborhood crowd. It will also be yet another way for travelers to select destinations, hotels, bars, restaurants, and more!

2. Get ready for more sports content.

We expect sports content to become even more commonplace on Reels in 2024. As the demand for short-form digestible news and highlights continues to grow, we expect more creators to provide, and we encourage brands to explore ways they can reach these demographics. 

3. Bring your creative A-game to the Reel field.

The majority of Instagram users are aged between 25 to 34 years. Given that millennials and Gen Z are the prime users of the app and its features, your ecommerce marketing strategy must cater to their needs.
A trend that will catch fire (figuratively, of course) in 2024 is the DIY clothing trend to help reduce, reuse, and reconstruct fast fashion for a sustainable future. Amidst rising climate concerns, this is a trend that’s going to resonate with your consumers globally.  

This trend will also be at the top of the Reel chart because it allows Gen Z to combat rising costs creatively, without actual “thrifting.” This trend can be leveraged by any brand that can put its creative foot forward. To gain brownie points and make your Reels more accessible, use software to add subtitles to video seamlessly. 

4. Be vocal about local (or global) issues.

Gen Z and millennials are often dubbed as activist generations. They will raise their voice against indiscrimination and support causes they care about, such as #MeToo and #BlackLivesMatter. 

Since they also have strong opinions about societal injustices, they’ll advocate and spend money to support social justice. Disability advocacy will continue gaining momentum in 2024, and Gen Zers and millennials are expected to follow influencers who advocate for individuals who endure physical or mental disabilities.

Businesses can undertake authentic corporate social responsibility programs and support causes that would help bring about positive societal change. 

5. Mixed media is on the rise.

2024 will be the year of mixed media as more and more Instagram users expect their preferred creators to break into new forms of media, such as podcasts.

The new year will also give rise to a strong sense of participation and community. For instance, Instagram users look forward to attending in-person conventions or other meet-and-greet sessions with their favorite creators. 

Businesses can benefit from this trend by either taking advantage of their brick-and-mortar stores or creating a new podcast channel to engage with their existing and potential consumers.

This doesn’t mean that celebrity influencers aren’t going to be in demand. They will be, but this trend can aid businesses in cutting down costs associated with influencer marketing and getting long-term benefits from sincere and trustworthy creators.

6. Dance your way to Instagram Reels.

Dancing videos and dance challenges will remain popular in 2024. 

Since more and more users are partaking in dancing challenges or creating dancing videos to show off their moves, this trend is going nowhere in the near future. Viewers are also quite attracted to dancing videos, making them a popular trend. 

Businesses can partake in or, better yet, create dance challenges to garner more customer participation.

7. Micro influencers will be more popular.

The coming year will see micro influencers at the helm of influencer marketing for ecommerce businesses on Instagram. Given the need for authentic content, Instagrammers need someone they can trust, relate to, and engage with. 

This doesn’t mean that celebrity influencers aren’t going to be in demand. They will be, but this trend can aid businesses in cutting down costs associated with influencer marketing and getting long-term benefits from sincere and trustworthy creators.

8. Insta will satisfy all shopaholic demands.

Insta-shopping is in high demand, with over 70% of shoppers turning to Instagram for their next purchase. If you haven’t set up your ecommerce shop on Insta yet, well, it’s high time you did.

You won’t even have to redirect your consumers to your website. They can easily browse, select, and buy products directly from the app. It’s as simple as that. So set up your shop and start displaying and promoting your products on Reels.

9. Comment with Reels.

When you post a Reel, Instagrammers can share, like, or leave comments under it. Wouldn’t it be lovely if you could reply to a Reel with your own? Well, you can

To create an immersive and intriguing experience for your users, jump on this trend bandwagon if you haven’t already.

10. Prioritize short-form content.

Instagram is leading the way forward when it comes to the way individuals consume and perceive content. Another Reel trend that will be popular in 2024 is bite-sized content, which takes less time and is easier to consume. 

Come up with innovative short-form video ideas, and don’t beat around the bush in your Reels if you want to gain and maintain your target audience’s attention.

11. Hashtag use is evolving.

No Instagram Reels trend list can be complete without the mention of hashtags. However, creators will use hashtags slightly differently in 2024.

Instead of using too many popular hashtags, 2024 will see creators and businesses use hashtags specific to their niche or brand. Specifically curated hashtags will help you pop up in searches relevant to your core business.

Similarly, branded hashtags are only specific to your brand and its campaigns. To increase your brand’s visibility, you can try out a blend of brand-specific, product or industry-specific, popular, and moderately popular hashtags.

12. Experiment with branded memes.

Brands often seem unapproachable and closed-off, especially traditional businesses. But brands must brandish their brand of humor on Instagram Reels to retain existing consumers and acquire and convert skeptical ones.
While doing that, ensure that you don’t come off as ingenuine or like you’re trying too hard. 

13. There’s a high demand for user-generated content (UGC).

UGC has been gaining momentum for some time now, and this trend is expected to become huge in the next year.
Given its authenticity, zero associated costs, and practically no effort, brands can make the most of this Reel trend if they repost their customer’s genuine reviews. But before you decide to run with this trend, make sure you’re aware of the do’s and don’ts of UGC.

Instagram Reel Trends to guide your marketing strategy in 2024

If you’re looking to create a blend of the Reel trends and are looking for more, a few other trends expected to gain momentum in 2024 are AR, live rooms, linking, IGTV vs TV, and Add Yours

Understanding and incorporating Instagram Reel trends in your marketing strategy can be your cheat sheet to profiting off this social media network.

Are you ready to stake your claim in the creator economy? Discover more helpful tips and resources from the experts at GRIN: Creator Management Learning Center

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Written by Arjun Ruparelia

An accountant turned writer, Arjun writes financial blog posts and research reports for clients across the globe. Arjun has five years of financial writing experience across verticals. He is a CMA and CA (Intermediate) by qualification.

© Grin Technologies Inc. 2024. All rights reserved.

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