Instagram Updates Reels Algorithm

social media social media for creatives social media for entrepreneurs social media marketing Mar 08, 2021

What's Happening

The social marketing community went a little crazy when Instagram posted this on their @creators profile. If you don’t already follow the account, it’s populated by Instagram employees and a great way to get the inside scoop about creating for the platform.

The post says Instagram is improving the algorithm based on what’s performing best (i.e. what people want to see) and outlines some best practices for Reels.

I do want to point out that the post specifically refers to Reels that will be featured in the Reels tab, meaning they are shown to people who aren’t your followers. If your Reels don’t fall in line with these recommendations, they’ll still be shown to those who follow you but are less likely to be seen by others.


In summary:

Reels that are entertaining, funny, or inspire a trend will be prioritized.

Reels that are low-res/blurry, reshared from other apps like TikTok, or mostly covered in text will not.


Use it for Your Business

One of the biggest laments I hear is: But, I don’t want to dance! Or, my personality isn’t silly.

I totally understand that and I believe you can take advantage of the extra algorithm juice Instagram will give you from posting a Reel without compromising who you are to do it. Instagram is saying these are going to be the Reels that are prioritized but it doesn’t say they won’t be shared at all.

Our goal is not to get InstaFamous. Sharing funny Reels to get featured in the tab will bring eyeballs to your account but if what they find there is different than your other posts, they won’t stick around and you’ve wasted your time and maybe hurt your credibility.

To thine own self (and brand) be true.

Now if these best practices are true to your brand or you can find a creative way to make them fit, do it!

Just because it's new doesn't mean it's worth your time: Is creating entertaining and funny Reels worth your time?

Yes!: I give it 3 out of 5 thumbs up.
A 3 Rating Means: You have a 50/50 chance of this trend making a difference. Don’t prioritize it over mission-critical strategies, but it could be worth testing.


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