TikTok’s success is largely due to participatory trends and the ability for anyone to not only consume clips on the app, but also interact with any meme or challenge with their own version.
Well, that and its highly tuned algorithm, which adjusts in real time to your session preferences. But inviting more people to each trend is a key to getting more users to open the app more often, while also expanding TikTok’s pool of content, with sometimes thousands of related clips in a single trend that you can then submit. to the users I have engaged with that topic.
So of course Instagram is also trying to push the same thing on Reels.
As you can see in this example, posted by app researcher Alexander PaluzziInstagram is currently testing a new option that would prompt users to “create a reaction video” directly from the Reels share sheet.
That could help get more people to post more Reels content, with the quick reminder helping you think about how you could do the same in your videos.
Instagram has already added something similar, with its own version of TikTok’s ‘Duet’ functionality (called ‘Remix’) and the ability to reply to a comment with a Reels clip. TikTok is also testing a new ‘Templates’ process with some Reel creators, which allows users to replicate the format of a Reels clip they’ve seen in their own content.
Video responses are another step in TikTok’s direction, as Instagram looks for ways to more closely align with TikTok’s core and its hugely popular offering, to undo TikTok’s growth and keep users aligned with its apps.
Which is working, at least to some extent. Some IG users have never downloaded TikTok and are happy with Reels, and if Instagram hadn’t added the feature and turned it into a fairly similar facsimile, those people would likely have felt more compelled to try TikTok instead, to keep up with the latest discussion trends.
That’s the real impetus behind the various TikTok clones, which you can now find on Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, and Snapchat. Sure, they’re unlikely to be as good as the original, but they don’t have to be superior, they just need to be good enough, so that users stay with their apps, rather than be swayed by the latest fad.
Although short-form videos are likely to be more than a fad now. As time goes on, more and more people are spending more and more on short-form video streaming options, with the format’s quick and instant entertainment delivering simple moments that can erase hours of free time as you scroll. for the transmission. .
That is something good? I mean, it mostly seems to be a logical progression of online media habits: we went from posting text, to posting images, to GIFs and videos, then to shorter video clips, which are kind of a fusion of the latter two formats. . People now prefer short clips for just about everything, because if any clip in your feed isn’t doing it for you, you can easily skip to the next one, doing it without compromise and giving users more control over their media intake.
And as noted, it also invites further participation. Because maybe you can’t, or don’t want to, make an hour-long clip, but a quick and fun answer? Anyone can do that. That helps get more people started, and again, that leads to a stronger content ecosystem, with more new clips and more people consuming more content.
Instagram is still nowhere near catching up on this front, but Reels is the fastest growing content format on the platform, and as noted, Meta doesn’t need to be better, or as good as TikTok, as such. It just needs to be ‘close to’, to keep people from getting sidetracked.
That’s why this option makes sense, because whatever TikTok does, Instagram will do too.
There’s no word yet on official testing or a release plan for the new notice.