Reaching Youth Travellers: Instagram Reels for Tourism

Instagram Reels for Tourism

In August 2020 Facebook announced Instagram Reels, a new short-video feature designed to compete with the popular platform TikTok. In this blog explores the opportunity Reels offers a for tourism operators to get on board and reach younger generations..

Capturing the Youth Market

Instagram users are more engaged than users on any other social network. The engagement rate per follower for Instagram is 2.3% compared to 0.2% for Facebook and 0.03% for Twitter.

This means that Instagram users like, comment on and share content at a significantly higher rate than other platforms. In addition, 48% of Instagram consumers use the network to plan their next holiday destination.

Millennials and Generation Z are amongst the highest users for this platform, with over half of global Instagram users aged 34 or younger as of July 2020. These are the same groups which have taken to TikTok with such enthusiasm, and the hope is this passion will be transferred to Reels.

According to Facebook, 90% of users on Instagram follow brands and businesses. While competition is fierce, Reels can help build your presence and create all-important brand awareness in younger markets.

How Do Reels Work?

  • Instagram Reels offer a new way for users to create, share and view short, multi-clip videos.

  • Clips are15 seconds in length and they can be edited to include music and over 1000 AR effects.

  • This feature has more advanced editing tools than Instagram Stories and videos are shared differently. Timing on Reels videos can be accelerated or slowed down, and there’s an align tool which allows for seamless jump-style cuts which are popular on TikTok.

  • Reels can appear on the creator’s main feed or be displayed to selected target audiences. There’s a new dedicated section on user profiles where all videos can be viewed.

  • Every uploaded video can be shared automatically to the new Reels section in Explore, and the algorithm has been altered to make it more like TikTok. This means it’s easier for those without large followings to be seen by more people.

  • At a recent press event, Vishal Shah, Instagram’s VP of Product confirmed this change: “We have not historically been very good at helping new creators find an audience. The pitch for new creators is that Reels is a way for you to get discovered. It's a way to find a global audience.”

Benefits for Tourism Operators

  • When creating videos, remember authenticity and spontaneity are valued and clips don’t need to be as polished as other marketing materials.

  • Short-form videos are layered with rapid cuts, teases and twists, allowing tourism brands to showcase their personality and tell their story in exciting, non-linear ways.

  • Combining trending popular songs with stunning scenery and fun effects is another simple, cost-effective way to foster engagement.

  • User-generated content can be recycled to create inspiring or amusing sequences.

  • Videos created by employees and brand ambassadors help keep brands relatable by giving the company a human face.

Reels offer tourism operators a way to reach younger, more engaged audiences with growing spending power.

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David Inches

Marketing Consultant

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