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How we Optimize Instagram Reel Length to Go Viral in 2024

Though researchers suggest that an ideal Instagram reel should range around 7-15 seconds, the perfect Instagram reel length will always ‘Depend’. Want to create a reel that’ll make you go viral in 2024? You’ve landed at the perfect destination!

So you’re ready to create your very first reel with the ambition to go viral on Instagram, right? Okay let’s go through the checklist, shall we? Did you get your scripting done? What about editing and all? Did you research trending audios and hashtags? Oh and most importantly! Did you decide on your Instagram reel length?

Now many of you might think “Nah, Instagram reel length ain’t that of a big deal” but they can very much make or break your dreams of going viral. Surprising, isn’t it? Well, it’s as real as the earth being round (sorry flat earthers) and that’s exactly why this blog is here. So buckle up, we’re diving right in to find the perfect reel length to make you go viral in 2024!

What is the Instagram Reel Feature?

Instagram Reels is IG’s exclusive feature that was born out of the downfall of the popular video-sharing application (TikTok) in the Indian subcontinent. The downfall of the platform opened the doors for Meta to introduce a similar feature that could take over the 200 million regular users of TikTok from India.

The feature of Instagram reels is integrated in the app itself where creators can create full screen videos ranging from 15 seconds to a maximum instagram reel length of 90 seconds for their audience which can award the creator with a massive boost in their engagement and visibility. As of 2024, reels have already become powerful enough to make any creator go viral overnight single-handedly.

Instagram is becoming a video dominant platform and there’s no doubt about it. In previous years, we’ve clearly seen how a single reel can take any small creator from scratch to the skies in no time. This algorithmic change has compelled traditional Instagrammers to change their strategies and shift to reel content where they must take every single detail into account which can change from something as big as scripting a reel to as minor as deciding the Instagram reel length that they’re producing.

Instagram Reel Length and Its Impact on Engagement

what is the maximum length of a reel on instagram

We live in a fast paced world where people want quick results, quick entertainment, and quick pleasure. Instagram reels are a perfect entertainment tool for such people because it caters everything that a modern day social media user wants. This is the very reason why creators are modifying their strategies to create even shorter yet engaging reels.

Forget that you’re a creator and think as a regular reel consumer for a minute. Would you enjoy watching a reel that’s very long and slow paced? You won’t, right? Chances are, you’ll skip the reel and jump to the next one until you find a reel that is crisp and engaging. This is certainly the reason why shorter reels have been performing really well compared to the reels that are longer in length.

Short length reels have just enough time to hook their viewers, entertain them, and compel them to engage with the reel in a very short span resulting in a very high engagement rate that longer reels usually lack. Moreover, enabling the Instagram reel download option can also be a great way to get more engagement regardless of the IG reel time limit.

The Perfect Instagram Reel Length to go viral on IG

Some marketers recently conducted research on casual IG user habits and it revealed that almost 92% of Instagram users spend around 6 hours on Instagram in a week. Furthermore, the research concluded that almost 60% of the total time was spent watching reels. Now that’s something!

This data should be enough to start making reels that actually engage these users and fuel your organic growth. To engage these IG users, you’ll have to get every single detail right in your reel including its optimum length to go viral on Instagram. Here’s how it works:

Perfect reel length fosters higher engagement

A perfectly paced and optimized reel is destined to attract users and compel them into engaging with your reels. A perfectly trimmed reel ensures that it hooks the viewer within the first 3 seconds, entertains them, and doesn’t feel stretched which maximizes engagement with minimal effort. Moreover, creators can also buy Instagram reel views to enhance their visibility which would ultimately contribute to their engagement as well.

Rewatches matter sire!

IG reels have the highest rewatch ratio which can go upto 40:60 for the watch to rewatch ratio. We dug deep into this and what we found wasn’t surprising. Most of the reels with the highest rewatches were short and crisp. This makes sense if we consider how there are more chances of a reel getting rewatched if it’s on the shorter end of the spectrum.

The modern world and attention spans

The average attention span of social media users has dropped drastically over the last decade which ultimately paved the way for short video platforms to rise and shine. The same goes for IG reels where short videos have already started to rule the platform. Many creators and businesses make the mistake of creating long form content which often doesn’t perform well and can become the reason for their reels not getting views.

Let’s find the Ideal Instagram Reel length to increase IG Reel views

Now that we’ve discussed how important it is to frame and trim your reels in such a way that they add value to your profile and help soar your profile growth through algorithmic leverage. But all of this is in theory and real-life implications are much different, which is why we’ve come up with everything you should consider to find the perfect reel length for your videos. Here we go!

1. What’s your Reel’s Glorious Purpose

Every single reel that exists on the IG platform has been posted with a purpose. It can be anything ranging from as simple as a wish to get more followers to as sublime as leaving an impact! So before you upload your reel, sit back and think about what you wish to achieve with it and trim it accordingly. Ideally, a reel that’s made to entertain and attract more followers should range anywhere from 15-30 seconds while reels that are created around storytelling are naturally on the longer side.

2. Time to stalk your competitors

Firstly, we don’t mean that you need to STALK your competitors. Our approach must be inclined toward healthy stalking to analyze what’s working for your competitors. Get a notepad and jot down what reel length is working for their different types of content and try to implement the same into your own reels.

Note: Reel lengths can vary a lot in different niches but once you get a hold of the perfect Instagram reel length for your videos, you’ll notice a rapid Instagram reel views increase for sure.

3. Don’t forget your audience

Many creators make the mistake of not understanding the needs and wishes of their audience which ultimately becomes the reason for their downfall. As a creator, you must keep checks on your audience’s preferences and analyze what type of content is awarding you with the best audience results.

Finally, experiment around it and we can guarantee that your metrics will shoot through the roofs. Don’t forget that Instagram has around 54.6% men and 45.4% women which must be considered by creators and businesses that offer gender-specific content.

4. Become a magnet

A reel should be like a magnet that attracts engagement and pushes your visibility upwards and for that, you must focus on experimenting with your niche and different reel lengths to find what actually works for you. The process can be a lengthy one but it’ll definitely be worth it in the end.

For meme reels, you can keep the lengths from anywhere around 5-15 seconds while storytelling reels can range anywhere from 30-90 seconds for maximum possible benefits.

5. Invest some time in analyzing your metrics

Analytics and Instagram insights play an important role in understanding how the algorithm is favoring your content (or if it’s not favoring you at all). Moreover, the analytics have the answer to almost all the doubts that you might be having about your reels’ performance, the best time to post reels, and much more.

Here’s how to check Instagram analytics:
  • Navigate to your IG profile and click on the three horizontal bars on the top right of your screen
  • Scroll down and you shall find the ‘analytics’ option (click on it)
  • All your analytics will be displayed where you can navigate to the reels analytics if you wish to curate a strategy based on that data.

Tooling Away: How to trim a video to the needed reel length

Not everyone has access to high-end editing software and Instagram understands it really well which is why it provides its very own reel editing software inside the application itself. Most people might not even know about it, so here’s how you can trim any reel to your desired length:

how to trim video for ideal reel length
  1. Start off by creating a reel or choosing a clip to upload as a reel.
  1. Once chosen, click on the ‘edit’ tool at the bottom of your video clip.
  1. Tap on your clip to reveal your clip timeline and a yellow slide bar will appear on both ends of your clip.
  1. You can slide these bars to trim the ends of your reel clip with ease. 
  1. Moreover, you can use the ‘split tool’ by sliding the progress bar to the point where you want to split the video.
  1. You can move this progress bar to other parts to split the video into multiple clips and discard the parts that you don’t want in your reel.
  1. Tadah! It’s that easy.

Suggestive Reading – How to reply to Instagram comments with reel?

How Different Industries Influence the IG Reel Length Trends

The best part about IG reels is that it doesn’t target any specific type of users of any specific industries. The platform treats everyone equally and offers a fair chance for every other brand and creator to create content and go viral on the platform. However, the length of reels can highly vary depending on different industry’s nature. Let us explain:

Industry TypeIG Reel Length Trend
FashionMost reels based around the fashion industry are usually anywhere around 14-28 seconds long to maximize their reach and chances of going viral.
TechnologyA tech based reel length usually depends on the type of technology that you’re trying to present. Depending on that, a tech reel can range around 20-50 seconds.
FoodReels about food have a ton of variety in them which can range anywhere from fun and yum food blogs to production videos. The variety in the industry naturally brings a fluctuation in the reel lengths as well, ideally varying from 20 seconds to up to 90 seconds.
EducationEducational and informative reels don’t have any specific reel length. They can be as short as 15 seconds to as long as 15 minutes (by using third party apps) depending upon the purpose of the reel and the depth of the topic.
EntertainmentUndoubtedly the most fun industry, entertainment related reels are short and crisp usually ranging around 15-30 seconds. Such reels hold the power to hook the viewers and ultimately increase Instagram reels views and your reach without much effort.

Instagram: Still a Photo Sharing Platform?

Well, Instagram is in chaos right now. The two fashionistas, Kylie Jenner and Kim Kardashian recently posted stories about “making Instagram Instagram again” after IG started to give algorithmic leverage to video content over photo content. And how can we forget how the two sisters brought Snapchat to its knees through a single statement that they don’t open the application anymore?

To this, Adam Mosseri (head of Instagram) opened up and released a video stating that Instagram is still a photo sharing app but they will still be experimenting with video content to diversify the audience and user base of the platform. This has created a dilemma among photographers and creators to shift their tactics to cater to an algorithm that’s oriented towards video content and takes into account the slightest details including the Instagram reel length.

Remember, Instagram is an ever-changing platform ruled by content. It’s your strategy that’ll decide if you reach the skies or struggle with houseflies. Don’t mess it up and implement what you learned. Post short reels ranging from 7-15 seconds for maximum engagement, but don’t hesitate to extend them if your niche demands it. And most importantly, keep creating and stay consistent!

People Also Ask

1. What’s the reason behind shorter reels performing so much better than longer reels?

To be precise, shorter reels offer a lot more entertainment and information within a very short span which goes really well with the modern day social media usage habits. Longer reels often fail to keep their audience engaged which becomes a very strong reason for their lower engagement rates.

2. How can I put a full length reel on Instagram?

Officially, Instagram allows users to post a reel which can range anywhere from 15-90 seconds. However, you can also post reels from as short as 5 seconds to as long as 15 minutes long reels via third-party tools.

3. How can I extend clips on a reel?

Once a clip is added it can only be trimmed in the editing section of IG. However, if you want to extend a reel by adding more clips to it then you can easily do it by clicking the ‘+’ icon next to the already added clips to extend the length of your overall reel.

4. Does Instagram reel length actually matter?

Creators need to take care of a lot of stuff while creating a reel which often overshadows the importance of reel length. But the truth is that IG reel length does matter and needs attention as short reels usually perform better than longer reels but the results can often vary depending upon other factors like industry, niche, and target audience.

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