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Instagram Prepares TikTok Rival

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Topics: Marketing

July 21, 2020

TikTok is the hottest social media app at the moment. With 800 million active users worldwide, the popular video-sharing app has already surpassed LinkedIn, Twitter, Pinterest, and Snapchat, but at the same time, it is facing scrutiny due to alleged security issues and ties to the Chinese government. Seizing the moment to capitalize on the success TikTok has attracted, Instagram last week announced that it’s preparing to launch Reels, their TikTok competitor, in the U.S. This a welcome development for businesses that already use Instagram regularly to connect with customers.

Instagram Prepares TikTok RivalImage Credits: Instagram via TechCrunch

Reels was designed to challenge TikTok’s growing dominance, and it shows. It will allow users to make and post short, 15-second videos set to music or other audio with a set of editing tools—like a countdown timer and tools to adjust the video’s speed, making it easier to record creative content. Users will be able to share Instagram Reels easily on their Stories, send them directly to other users, and add them to a Reels tab on their profiles.

Both platforms, TikTok and Instagram Reels, are aimed at content creators and their innovative ways to tell stories in videos that last 9 to 15 seconds. The hyper-creative, short, and shareable content has the potential to be viral, which is great for businesses looking to reach new customers and create more brand awareness. These platforms also have the biggest audiences, with Instagram boasting 1 billion users compared to TikTok’s 800 million active users. Instagram might also have a competitive edge in that while it started as an app targeted to teens, it now has users of all ages, as well as different features and formats for a diversity of content, facilitating an all-inclusive strategy for small businesses.

The official announcement has yet to be released, but Reels will reportedly launch by August in the United States, the United Kingdom, Japan, Mexico, and 50 other countries.

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