Instagram Reels Targets Creators With New Updates, Trends Section

On Friday, Meta announced the addition of several new creator-focused updates for its popular TikTok-copycat Instagram Reels.

Now, Reels will feature a dedicated destination for trending audio and hashtags, new Insights metrics, Reels editing tools, and the expansion of Gifts to more countries.

Looking to highlight fresh content ideas for Reels creators, Instagram has added a space that showcases the top trending songs on Reels, allowing creators to see how many times the song has been used, then tap to use it or save it for later.

Creators will also be able to see which topics and hashtags are trending on Reels. To do so, they can go to their Professional Dashboard, select “Check today's Reels Trends” option, then explore the “Reels Trends” page.

Instagram uses Coachella, which starts Friday, as an example, having found that people start sharing their #coachella content before the festival begins –– a trend that creators could discover in advance.

In addition, Instagram is launching a unified editing screen for Reels creators, inviting them to bring together video, audio, clips, stickers, and text in one place. The company says there will be more Reels editing tools coming soon.

Furthermore, Gifts -- a popular Reels feature that began testing last year and allows fans to support creators monetarily via themed virtual gifts -- will be rolling out in Australia, Canada, France, Mexico, New Zealand and the United Kingdom. Previously anonymous, now creators will not only be able to see which fans sent them gifts but can notify the user with a heart icon

Finally, creators will now have access to new Reels insights to understand how their content is performing. The “total watch time” metric captures the total amount of time a Reel was played and replayed, while a new “average watch time” metric relays the average amount of time spent playing a Reel.

Per Instagram: “If your average watch time is 17 seconds, out of everyone who watched your Reel they watched an average of 17 seconds. This will help you better understand where people are being engaged or where you may need to create a stronger hook to have viewers stay longer.”

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