I’ve been telling creators and businesses to build an exit plan before it’s too late. The way social media algorithms are evolving. There will be only a content engine.
No Influencer, No Creator, No Social Media business. What we would have left is an AI-controlled content engine.
That engine never gives a creator or business enough time to build that connection. Or brand messaging. We all are going to be affected by this. Me too.
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June 12, 2023 - 12 min read
Instagram reels isn’t a replica of TikTok, it might feel like you can repost your content from TikTok to Instagram reels. To go viral on both platforms but you might ruin your brand audience by doing so!
When Instagram came out with reels, everyone started pushing out TikTok reposts to grow faster on Instagram. It worked for few months, but now the state of Instagram reels is different & it changes from time to time.
We kicked off 2023 with some serious announcements from Instagram’s CEO confessing that Instagram pushed more reels than photos. And they will settle things back to normal meaning pushing every single piece of content at the same rate.
After that Meta’s Earning Report 2022 came out, In the statement regarding Instagram.
Mark Zuckerberg confirmed that to make people create & watch reels they tried to give new format a boost until 2022. Now, reels can grow on their own.
And that brings us to current state of reels, which is reels aren’t as organic as 2021. But the time spent by Instagram users is increasing, now more than 20% users spend their half of the time on reels tab.
That’s why IG reels needs to be part of your overall Instagram strategy.
Changes to Tiktok algorithm are bigger than Instagram reels. Increasing the arguments regarding Tiktok Vs Instagram strategy, here’s what you need to know regarding these changes.
First Tiktok recently announced a new monetisation feature called “Tiktok Series”.
TikTok believes in quality content & they have mentioned these priorities over and over again. This time with “TikTok Series” the platform wants creators to create long-form content to make Tiktok users more engaged within the platform.
The creators can charge upto $190 for content series. Your Tiktok series can have upto 80 videos with length of upto 20 minutes.
This new era of paywalled content on Tiktok will bring more engagement & money to creators.
Second TikTok’s Creativity Program aka “Creative Fund 2.0”
The platform introduced a new creator fund called “Tiktok creativity Program” and creators can apply for monetisation of video content. But this time there is a change to help deserving creators make more money.
In creativity program, creators apply for monetisation for a specific Tiktok video and the video has to be over 1 minue length or minimum. Plus, Tiktok will review Originality & creativity of video to consider monetisation.
Final Take, What these changes tell us?
These changes tell us that Tiktok wants original & long-form content to exist on platform. Tiktok was know for trending sounds in 2019-2021 and it still represents that part of social media. But now the platform seeks originality & wants to be a content hub like Youtube.
I’ve advised 1000s of marketers, SMBs & creators that only reason Instagram never dies is because it’s the most personal platform & middle child in the family of Social Media Platforms.
The audiences on Instagram want to see memories, highlights & content from their friends, families & connections. And they discover new creators & businesses based on what Instagram knows about them.
And Instagram gets the knowledge from who they follow, what they or the people they follow like. It’s all interconnected.
And that’s different from Tiktok. On Instagram while creating reels, you have to remember to make sure you focus on creating content more valuable for your existing followers.
When you create valuable content for them. You will get better engagement from them and as Instagram’s audience is interconnected & the platform knows the interests through the audience. You will go viral & get more engagement.
Meaning key to a great Instagram reels strategy is focusing on fulfilling your current audience with value to get more engagement from non-followers.
To do that, you need to be more focused on understanding your followers how they react to different posts. After that you need to find what other creators & businesses are doing to find what works.
Both of these will help you in creating content within your expertise, without any pressure to jump on trends. Why? As you now understand what strategies & tactics work for your audience better than those Instagram fast growth gurus.
Above I mentioned Tiktok is different with context about how Instagram’s audience is interconnected & existing followers make a huge impact on virality.
Tiktok is opposite, People use it to discover new solutions, trends, Ideas & businesses. They aren’t interconnected with most of their friends. Unless Tiktok asks you to connect contacts & 70% people usually don’t follow their friends after connecting their contact lists.
Tiktok users are on Platform for new content discovery. You see content based on what you like, the personal connections doesn’t matter as much as they did on IG.
That’s why brands on Tiktok try to create content that targets a broad share of platform. Because people are hear to build new interests, and discover new businesses.
First, Brands try to create content that appeals to 90% of people interested in X topic to go viral or gain exposure.
For example, @Bose on Tiktok create funny reels about their new products to reach most of the audience.
Second, They create educational & focused content to keep the existing followers engaging + connected with their brands.
To explain Take @schick on Tiktok creating story-focused content to make sure the connection between newly gained audience starts building.
Third, Brands try to stay relevant by discussing points that audience mentions in comments. To make people believe they are listening to everyone.
For Example, McDonald’s Tiktok manager replied to a follower who said nobody will read this. This act shows a lot & the screenshot of this comment gathered 13k likes on Twitter.
Showing how engaging in comments can also impact your audience + you can end up gaining more attention on Twitter or reddit.
Packing all this up, TikTok strategy For Brands & Creators is a mix of broad content to target new followers & insightful content to keep the followers engaged.
And engaging is similar to Instagram, It’s important on both platforms.
In the state of Instagram reels, I mentioned that IG is back to prioritising every single format equally. What does that mean?
It means that Instagram Imagery content is here to stay & it is gaining organic reach.
Comparing it to Rival Platform, now we have carousels on Tiktok. And this feature is highly organic when we compare it to Instagram carousels.
Tiktok carousels are an amazing way to post imagery content on platform and you can share more than 10 slides with ability to add trending sounds. On Instagram, You can only have 10 slides with no sound adding feature.
Instagram carousels seem to take a loss here in terms of organic reach & Format freedom. But this format is one of my favourite to build an engaging audience as your audience tend to spend more time consuming your content.
Another difference is Instagram carousels are heavily used to share long text based & engaging content. On other hand, most of the use regarding TikTok carousels is still associated visual images with no text. Also, Tiktok carousels are being used to promote 18+ content as many creators are adding only fans content in-between slides.
Which brings this fight between both platforms to 1-1. Instagram carousels in your IG strategy stands for community building & improving the connections with your audience. TikTok carousels are here for organic reach for beautiful imagery content but it is catching up.
My personal take, Don’t fear to share insightful text based carousels on both of these platforms.
This honestly is a big point of discussion to help businesses understand how influencers move differently on both platforms because the nature of platform & audiences is different. But to explain what makes the most impact on influencer marketing regarding Tiktok & Instagram is:
The probability of reaching the number of followers the influencer have on the platform. While I explained that Instagram is more personal & the focus is on existing audience.
Due to that reason, working with Instagram influencers results in brands reaching most of the audience through IG Stories & Reels or Imagery Content. And the number of followers brands want to reach are achievable.
On Tiktok, As the connection isn’t there due to nature of the platform. Sometimes it results that Brand deals don’t reach many existing followers & also fail to go viral. But this can also turn upside down as In few scenarios, The content goes viral & Brand reachs more audience than expected.
Overall it hangs up at testing, you need to be more focused on testing different influencers, Ad creatives to be successful at influencer marketing on both of these platforms.
I won’t compare Tiktok Advertising to Instagram Advertising as it is more logical to compare it directly to Video advertising part of Instagram Advertising.
Tiktok Advertising takes the lead here, the platform has introduced a lot of new Ad formats & targeting options to help advertisers while Instagram reels Ads haven’t seen much development since the introduction of the format back in 2021.
I hope to see more investment from Instagram to make reels ads better. But for now Tiktok Ads gets the crown!
Another reason I’m giving the crown to Tiktok is free resources built by the platform to help advertisers.
Instagram live is fading away & I don’t remember when I watched a random Instagram live. Because Instagram stopped pushing lives back in 2018-19.
But Tiktok lives are booming and the discoverability of other people finding your live is very high. The platform is pushing the live sessions like regular videos to relevant audiences.
Apparently how Tiktok Live works is very fishy, because a recent survey I did of 40 marketers they mentioned that most of Tiktok Lives recommended to them in “For You” page where based on their account location.
Marketers based In Germany & Belgium received Live suggestions in Dutch & German even though they never engaged with Tiktok content in that language.
That’s my only concern regarding Tiktok Live. Overall it beats Instagram live & this feature helps you be more interactive with your audience.
It depends, you need to your market research & study your consumers where they hang out.
I certainly hope this post provided you insights that brought clarity & knowledge to you regarding Instagram & TikTok Strategy. You can subscribe to my newsletter below to receive more algorithm & data backed insights about social media marketing.