The Breakdown: Instagram Reels v. TikTok

With social media apps adding new features nearly every day, it can sometimes be hard to keep up with the latest additions. In August 2020, Meta launched Instagram Reels, a video-sharing feature on Instagram that allows users to create and upload short videos. This feature closely resembled TikTok, another short video-sharing platform that had a rise in popularity in 2020 where it quickly became the most downloaded app of the year. Although Instagram Reels and TikTok are quite similar video-sharing platforms, they have a few basic differences that might be helpful to know when creating videos within the apps. Here’s the breakdown.

  1.   Length of Clips

On both TikTok and Instagram Reels, you can record one clip, a series of clips or upload previously recorded videos from your camera roll to start building your video. However, there is a difference in the length of the videos that each app allows. While Reels allows you to record 15-90 second videos, TikTok allows you to record videos up to 10 minutes long. 

  1.   Editing Clips

Both apps allow users to add music, audio, voice-over, text, filters and effects to their videos. However, with Reels, you can reorder clips or edit them individually for length as you are filming them. Whereas for TikTok, you will need to record the entire video in clip order or upload clips that users can reorder or edit to the desired length. 

  1.   Sharing Your Video

The two apps have different ways that users can reach an audience. With Reels, every video you post will be shared to your Instagram feed as well as appear on the Reels section of your Instagram profile. However, TikTok allows for certain restrictions on who can view your video. You can set your video to be visible only to you, your friends (people who follow you and who you follow back) or to everyone on the app.

One great feature about both Reels and TikTok is the versatility between the two apps. You can make a video on TikTok and almost seamlessly post the same video to Reels or vice-versa. Both platforms have proven to give users great engagement with their audience, so what’s the harm in trying both? The more videos you create with Instagram Reels and TikTok, the quicker you will become an expert!