Using TikTok & IG Reels To Grow Your Business – A Guide

May 10, 2022

6 minute read
  • Digital Marketing
  • Social Media

TikTok vs. Instagram Reels — two extremely similar social channels are in a fierce battle that’s been going on ever since TikTok effectively challenged the monopoly Facebook, now called Meta, built over a decade.

TikTok is very popular with Gen Z and later millennials with its bitesize entertaining videos. Even so that some brands might find it problematic how young the demographic is, but with each day, TikTok’s age groups are slowly expanding. More and more internet users from different age ranges are starting to appreciate the platform and building a habit of opening TikTok daily.

In fact, 38% of the monthly user base is over the age of 30.

For the first time in years, another platform is going toe-to-toe with Facebook. 

To pull the plug on TikTok’s growing influence, Facebook rolled out Reels on Instagram, its sister platform. This, in effect, catapulted an already fierce competition into an even tighter race.

Will Instagram Reels be able to deliver what it’s intended to do? Or will this be just a minor hiccup for TikTok’s explosive growth?

Let’s examine the differences between TikTok vs. IG Reels.

In this blog post, we will talk about the following:

  • What are TikTok and Instagram Reels?
  • TikTok vs. Instagram Reels: What are the pros and cons?
  • Which one should you use for your business?
  • How can you make a TikTok or Instagram Reel that stands out?

You’ll be able to decide which platform is best for your business with this article as a guide.

What are they?

By now, most of us know what TikTok is. But as a recap, TikTok is a vertical video platform that has claimed global recognition in the last few years. It allows you to create, watch, and share bitesize video content for entertainment.

TikTok had massive appeal to users belonging to the Gen Z and later Millennial generations — at first. Now, TikTok has become a cross-generational platform as more and more people turn to short videos to pass their time. In other words, it’s not just kids and teens who are loving TikTok, but folks older than them too.

Understanding that TikTok is a growing threat, and a rapidly growing one, Facebook launched Instagram Reels in 2020. That same year, TikTok reached 2 billion app downloads.

Reels was launched with the goal in mind to recover the market share it lost in the four years that TikTok has been growing. And so far, Instagram Reels is becoming a fan favorite amongst older generations with 33% of its users between ages 25-35 years and older. And following close are users between 18-and 24 years old.

Earlier in 2022, Instagram announced that it had 2 billion monthly active users while TikTok has one billion.

With those numbers, you can wonder whether Instagram Reels is succeeding in outperforming TikTok.

Before we say yes, let’s take a look at the amount of time it took for both platforms to gain such numbers. While Instagram has more users compared to TikTok — by a billion— it took over 12 years for them to reach that number. TikTok on the other hand reached a billion users in just 5 years. That’s over 45% growth since their last report in 2020 where TikTok had 689 million monthly users.

TikTok vs. Instagram Reels: What are the pros and cons?

In short – they are very similar, but there are unique differences between the two. I’ll outline those below.

Video length

Currently, TikTok has released another update by increasing the length of the maximum limit of its videos to 10 minutes. Meanwhile, IG Reels is sticking with the 60-second limit.

If you’re in need of long-form video sharing, TikTok would be better suited for you than Instagram Reels.

Content creator’s earnings

Meta is determined to take back the ground they’ve lost to TikTok using Instagram Reels. And they are going to great lengths and using costly methods to do it.

For one, Meta is paying Reels creators several times higher than TikTok does through their creator fund. They believe that the higher incentive can help attract and nurture the top social talents to create content on Reels rather than Instagram.

At the start of the Reels Play Bonus Program, Instagram influencers with large followings can be offered north of $10,000 for every Reel. While Influencers with smaller followings are offered around $800 a month for a well-performing Reel.

This is in comparison to TikTok influencers who are paid between 20 to 40 cents per 1000 views.

As the competition heats up, Meta plans to increase their spending on Reels creators through bonuses. Their hope is that it will spark a mass relocation of creators onto Instagram and create more Reels for their followers’ consumption.

Duets vs. Remixes

Revamping the duet feature in 2020 has proved to do wonders for TikTok. The Duet feature was able to bridge the growing gap between people at the onset of the COVID-19 quarantine. It was an effective answer to people’s need for genuine interaction, connection, and community.

TikTok’s Duet allows users to respond to a video challenge and post their content side by side as long as the feature is enabled. This means that when a TikToker turns on the Duet mode, other users can react with another video and share the screen with them.

Seeing the popularity of Duets, Instagram released Remix under Reels the following year. Just like TikTok, Remix allows Reels creators to produce reaction videos side-by-side.

Currently, Remix is limited to Reels, but Meta is lining up a major revamping this year and plans to turn Remix into an individual core feature of Instagram. This will enable Instagram users to create remixes of their older, non-Reels video content.

Reels Remix has had some success being TikTok’s copycat by giving Reels creators new and exciting ways for content collaboration. But TikTok’s Duet has mastered the art of giving its users a more organic feel through its robust functionalities.

Though Remix has some good throwback music, Duet has a far wider selection of viral sounds to choose from.

And another pro that TikTok has over IG Reels is the Stitch feature. From the word itself, this feature allows TikTok users to stitch videos together. You can combine bits and pieces of your videos or from another user for as long as Stitch is enabled, which you cannot do on Instagram Reels.

Cross-functionality

Both TikTok and Instagram Reels have Facebook cross-platform functionality. Users of both platforms can share their content on Facebook. But along with the release of the Remix sub-feature, Meta also announced that they will give more focus on reshared Reels rather than reshared TikTok content on Facebook. So, if you are a TikToker resharing your content on Instagram or Facebook, your reach will be less than if it were a Reel.

Which one should you use for your business?

Here at Strikepoint Media, we utilize both TikTok and Instagram to grow our brand and release educational content about marketing, advertising, and conversion.

Apart for running ads, both platforms are free real estate for you to grow and engage your audience with short, snappy, and entertaining videos. According to Wyzowl, at least 69% of people prefer to watch short videos when researching new products and services compared to the 18% that want text-based content.

While Instagram Reels has the backing of Meta, as showcased by their sophisticated UI and at least 2 billion users ready to be reached, TikTok is the undoubted leader when it comes to user engagement with its raw and authentic feel.

We recently wrote about the engagement rates on TikTok in this blog post.

How to make a TikTok or Reel that stands out

Now that you’ve decided whether to use TikTok or Instagram Reels —or both— for your business, it’s time to learn more about what makes good video content.

TikTok

Whether you start creating TikTok videos right now or plan to in the future, consider it good practice to secure your brand name on the platform by creating an account as early as possible.

When it comes to content creation, consider videos introducing yourself and your brand or business. A short get-to-know-you video gives your business a more organic and genuine feel.

Another good video idea is the Workplace Tour. Show what your workplace looks like. Give a short peek at how you operate and the equipment your business invested in. This gives your customers and audience a glimpse of your meticulous process, and gives you an opportunity to feel more “authentic” and relatable.

IG Reels

Two billion active users isn’t something to look past. It offers endless opportunities for your business if you know how to tap into it effectively.

For any business, now is the best time to create and publish Reels for your brand. The Instagram algorithm is emphasizing promoting Reels content as a way to combat TikTok’s popularity. The more Reels you create, the better you can reach your target audience and grow your following. Just take it from us, our latest Reel reached over 3,500 people.

Some of the best Reels you can find are those giving tips, tricks, strategy checklists, and short listicles of their subject matter.

If you are planning to reupload some of your TikTok content on IG Reels, make sure that it’s the source video. Directly reposting from TikTok or uploading a video with TikTok’s watermark will immediately get your content thrown into the backburner of Instagram’s algorithm.

What’s your decision?

So, TikTok vs. IG Reels, what’s best for your brand’s long-term social media marketing game?

Strikepoint is on every popular social channel as part of our multi-platform content marketing strategy. But to just decide between TikTok vs. IG Reels? We say to be on both platforms. Both are free and have billions of users you can readily tap into for your business.

If you’re looking for digital marketing experts who can help you with your business, Strikepoint Media offers free digital marketing audits and consultations. Our experts can tailor a marketing strategy specific to the needs of your business that are both repeatable and scalable to maximize your profit. Contact us here.