8 Essential Elements of a Successful Social Media Reel Strategy

Creating a social media reel can be a daunting task, but it’s essential for any business looking to create a successful social media strategy. By focusing on four key elements, you can create a reel that will engage your audience and help you achieve your marketing goals. So, what are the four essential elements of a successful social media reel? Keep reading to find out!


“Stop selling. Start helping.” – – Zig Ziglar, Worldwide Motivator.

Time To Take Action

There has been a recent surge in the use of reels as a medium for social media posts. What are reels? They are short videos, typically 7-60 seconds long, that play on a loop. Reels are especially popular on Tik Tok and Instagram, where they are often used to share quick snippets of everyday life, how-to’s, and funny moments.


Brands and businesses are starting to create their own reel content to share with their followers. So if you’re thinking about creating a reel strategy for your business, you clicked on the perfect blog to help you create a successful reel.

How do they help build your brand?

Reels can help you connect with your customers in a few ways:


  • The reels can help you introduce yourself and your brand to people who may not have heard of you before. 
  • Reels can also show off your products or services in a way that is more engaging than simply writing about them. 
  • They can help build trust with potential customers by showing them that you are an expert in your field.

8 essential elements of a successful social media strategy

1. Establish your goals and objectives for your social media reel


8 essential elements of a successful social media reel strategy: 1 Establish your goals and objectives for your social media reel


Businesses must establish their goals and objectives when making a social media reel strategy to ensure that their efforts are focused and effective. Without a clear plan, it can be challenging to measure the success of a social media reel campaign’s success, and businesses may waste time and resources on unsuccessful initiatives.

When creating a social media reel strategy, businesses should consider what they hope to achieve:

  • Are they looking to increase brand awareness?
  • Drive traffic to their website? 
  • Increase sales? 

Once they have a clear goal, they can develop objectives that will help them achieve this goal. 

For example: if a business wants to increase brand awareness, one objective might be to increase the number of followers on its social media channels.

With a clear goal and objectives in place, businesses can then begin developing their social media reel strategy. This will include:

  • Choosing the right platforms to focus on.
  • Creating engaging content.
  • Targeting the right audience. 

By focusing on these key components, businesses can create a social media reel strategy that is both effective and efficient.

2. Create a storyboard or treatment that outlines the key points you want to hit


8 essential elements of a successful social media reel strategy 2: Create a storyboard or treatment that outlines the key points you want to hit


Creating a storyboard or treatment can help you organize your thoughts and ensure that your reels hit all the key points you want them to. 

A storyboard is essentially a diagram of your film, mapping out each scene and the shots you’ll need to capture it. 

Treatment is a more detailed description of each scene, including the dialogue and any necessary props or special effects.

Once you have your storyboard or treatment complete, it’s time to start filming! If you’re working with a team, make sure everyone is on the same page about the vision for the project. Assign roles and responsibilities so that everyone knows what they need to do. And don’t forget to set up a schedule so that everyone knows when they need to be available for filming.

Once you start filming, it’s crucial to stay organized. Keep track of all your footage so that you can easily find it later when you’re editing. And be sure to back up your footage regularly in case something happens to your original copies.

Editing can be one of the most challenging parts of making a reel, but it’s also one of the most important. This is your chance to put your spin on the project and make it your own. So take your time and experiment with different techniques until you find the best ones.

3. Choose the correct format and style for your reel


8 essential elements of a successful social media reel strategy 3: Choose the right format and style for your reel


When choosing the correct format and style for your reel, your target audience must be kept in mind. A standard format will work well if you are targeting a general audience. However, if you are targeting a specific industry or niche, you will want to tailor your reel to that audience.

Ensure to have the following in mind:

  • Your reel should be formatted in a way that is easy to follow and visually appealing. 
  • Use clear, concise titles and subtitles to help viewers quickly understand what they are watching.
  •  Make sure to use high-quality video and audio footage, and select an appropriate soundtrack that enhances the mood of your reel.

Finally, test your reel on different devices and web browsers to ensure that it looks and performs its best.

4. Find your niche


8 essential elements of a successful social media reel strategy 4: Find your niche


When creating reels for your business’s social media, finding your niche is essential. Here are two questions to have in mind when thinking about what your niche is:

  • What are you good at? 
  • What can you offer your customers that nobody else can? 

Once you know what makes you unique, focus on highlighting those strengths in your reel. Be sure to showcase customer testimonials and case studies to back up your claims, and make sure your reel is high-quality and professional-looking. 

After finding your niche

Once you find your niche, now it is time to post your niche reels consistently. Being consistent when posting reels shows your followers, and customers, that you are active and want to share the products or services you have to offer.

Finding your niche and posting regularly are two of the most effective strategies to gain traction on Instagram Reels. There are a lot of Instagram users with a wide range of hobbies and interests. There’s a niche for you, no matter what your brand or business does!

When creating your reel, be sure to include a mix of content that showcases your skills and highlights your personality. In addition to showing off your work, you should also tell potential clients and collaborators a little bit about yourself. By doing this, you’ll help them get to know you better and see if you’re a good fit for their project.

5. Know what’s trending


8 essential elements of a successful social media reel strategy 5: Know what's trending

When creating reels you want to ensure you are constantly in the know of trends. Yes, it is important to post reels that provide information about your brand, however, it is crucial to make reels that are trending in order to reach your target audience and other users who could possibly become new customers.

Tip: When a reel is trending on Instagram and Tik Tok the trend will be a sound or song and sometimes along with a filter.

6. Use hashtags


8 essential elements of a successful social media reel strategy 6 Use hashtags



8 essential elements of a successful social media reel strategy. Instagram logo


Hashtags are important to use in your reel captions because they help people find your business. By using specific hashtags, potential clients and collaborators can easily discover your reel and the type of service/product you provide.

In addition to using hashtags that describe your business, it’s also helpful to use hashtags that are specific to your location. This way, people in your area can easily find your reel and see the kind of work you do.

Here are some examples of location hashtags you could use:

  • #canadianowned
  • #shoplocalcanada
  • #canadianbusiness
  • #canadianmade
  • #americanrestaurant
  • #americanboutique

8 essential elements of a successful social media reel strategy. Tik Tok Logo

Tik Tok

When having an SEO strategy Tik Tok should not go unnoticed, Tik Tok is slowly becoming a heavy keyword search engine. That is why it is essential to use keywords from your keyword strategy.

For example, if you sell affordable jewelry, in your caption of the reel you’d want to use #affortablejewelry, that way when the user searches up “affordable jewelry” or even likes content similar to yours, your reel will pop up on their For You page or the Tik Tok search engine.

Tip: The Trends section under your Discover tab can show you hashtags that are trending right now. Research each trending hashtag to look for opportunities that your brand can leverage.

Why are hashtags so important?

Hashtags are important in your reel captions because they help users find your content. When someone searches for a specific hashtag, your reel will show up in the results if you used it in your caption. This can help you reach a wider audience and grow your following on Tik Tok.

To use hashtags effectively, you need to research which ones are popular and trending. You can do this by searching for specific hashtags in the apps. Once you find some relevant and niche hashtags, you can start using them in your captions. Just make sure to use a variety of hashtags so that you’re reaching different audiences.

When it comes to writing Tik Tok captions, shorter is usually better. This is because users are more likely to scroll past lengthy text. Keep your captions concise and focus on giving users an idea of what your reel is about. If you can make them laugh or feel something, even better!

7. Use effects/transitions


8 essential elements of a successful social media reel strategy 7: Use effects/transitions


When it comes to creating videos for social media, it’s important to use effects and cool transitions to make them more engaging. By doing so, you’ll be able to capture your viewers’ attention and hold it longer, which can result in more views and better conversions.

There are a ton of different ways that you can add visual effects to your videos, but one way that’s becoming increasingly popular is by using an app like KineMaster. 

8 essential elements of a successful social media reel strategy. Kinemaster logo

KineMaster is a powerful video editing tool that allows you to add all sorts of different effects to your videos, including cool transitions. If you’re looking to add some wow factor to your social media videos, then definitely check out KineMaster. It’s a great tool that can help you make your videos more engaging and visually appealing.

8. Understand the algorithm


8 essential elements of a successful social media reel strategy 8: Understand the algorithm


Instagram’s algorithm

The Instagram Reels algorithm determines which Reels are shown to which Instagram user.

In your primary feed, you’ll see Reels from accounts you follow, but there are two additional locations where Instagram Reels from other creators and businesses may be found:

  • The Reels tab: This is Instagram’s equivalent of the TikTok For You page. For an ever-changing, scrollable feed of Reels curated by the algorithm, go to the bottom of the Instagram app’s home page and click the Reels icon.

8 essential elements of a successful social media reel strategy. Instagram's Reel Tab

  • The Explore tab: The Instagram Explore tab also has a lot of reel videos, along with Instagram posts and stories from the platform’s algorithm.

8 essential elements of a successful social media reel strategy. Instagram's explore tab

How you interact

Instagram’s algorithm is not only evaluating how you engage with the material, it’s tracking how you interact with other users:

  •  Does someone follow you and search for you by name? 
  • Do you message each other, or leave comments on one another’s postings? 
  • Do you tag each other in your images?



With Reels and Explore, you’ll almost certainly get videos from creators you haven’t heard of… but if you’ve ever interacted with them on Instagram — whether it’s by raising your hands in the air high and proud or being a lurker — the platform considers that.

How does Instagram know?

Instagram keeps track of user affinity, which is a fancy term for “what you’re interested in.” Instagram takes note of the subject or topic and attempts to provide comparable content if you’ve liked or engaged with a Reel or post in the past.

What kind of information does the AI use to figure out what a video is about? Through your Instagram Reels hashtags, as well as pixel, frame, and audio analysis.

Tik Tok’s algorithm

The TikTok algorithm is a method for making content suggestions tailored to each user. It determines which videos a person might enjoy based on their own preferences and shows them on the user’s For You page.

Because of this, the For You page is highly personalized for each user. The content you see on your For You page will not be the same as what your friend or coworker sees on theirs. A person who watches a lot of beauty and makeup material would naturally see more similar videos. Yet those films are unlikely to appear for someone who doesn’t watch a lot or any beauty and makeup videos.

It also implies that the types of material you encounter on this page will vary over time as your viewing habits and preferences evolve. You may observe more DIY-related videos on your For You page, for example, as you become interested in DIY projects. This happens as a result of your involvement with more crafting and DIY content.

Account indicators

TikTok analyzes the hardware and account configurations of each user to optimize for performance.

The main information it looks at are:

  • Country settings
  • Language preferences
  • Device type
  • Category selection

However, since users are less likely to express them as preferences, they hold less weight than the other two variables. As a result, the algorithm is more likely to give greater significance to a strong indication of interest, such as watching a video from start to finish.

6 tips for making Tik Tok’s and Instagram’s algorithm work for you and not against you

Tik Tok takes into account neither number of followers nor a track record of successful videos when ranking accounts. As a result, it’s significantly simpler for new accounts to appear on the relevant users’ For You page – as long as they’re taking the appropriate method. On that note, here are some suggestions for increasing your TikTok algorithm chances:

1. Have an intriguing start to the reel:

Have something that will pull the viewer in, such as “if you’re looking to find the perfect summer sandal you’re going t want to see this”.

Tik Tok places a premium on things like whether or not people watched your video to the end. As a result, you must create interesting material in order to entice more individuals to watch your videos from beginning to end. You must grab their attention within the first few seconds and keep it throughout the whole video in order for them to want to view the whole reel.

2. Shorter is better

Tik Tok recently increased the maximum video length to ten minutes. However, longer videos may not necessarily improve your chances with the TikTok algorithm. The video completion rate, as previously said, is important in the algorithm. What’s the likelihood that viewers will watch a whole 15-second film rather than a 10-minute film?

Try to create reels that are shorter, to the point, and appealing to viewers from start to end. That isn’t to say you shouldn’t experiment with long-form films, especially if they’re in better alignment with your brand’s identity, messaging, and goals. Just keep in mind that at least some of your films should be brief.

3. Use keywords

While you may keep your captions short or even leave them blank, it’s far better if you can utilize them to your advantage. Make sure the algorithms understand what the video is about by writing captions that are relevant to it.

You can utilize the period to incorporate keywords that are relevant to the video. This will help TikTok understand the video’s content and display it to appropriate users. That said, be careful not to overload your caption with keywords just for the sake of it. Instead, intelligently employ them in a sentence that is clear and easy to comprehend while being relevant.

4. Timing is everything

In the same manner that it does on other social networks, time is of the essence on TikTok and Instagram. The algorithm considers interactions on your video when ranking it correctly. To put it another way, the more engagement it detects, the more likely your film will appear on relevant users’ For You pages and Explore pages.

When your audience is most engaged, posting your TikTok videos will assist you in reaching this goal. The optimum time to publish on social media, in general, is between 9 a.m. and 10 a.m. on Tuesdays through Thursdays. However, each audience is unique.

5. Trending sounds are your best friend

TikTok and Instagram are two popular social media sites that are particularly focused on audio, with songs and noises rapidly going viral. It’s one of the few social networks where you may conduct searches using audio, so it’s no surprise that the music you use affects your videos’ discoverability.

When someone watches a video with a particular audio track on Tik Tok and Instagram, the algorithm will take it as a sign to suggest similar videos. As a result, using popular songs and sounds in your film might improve your content discoverability. Don’t be scared to jump in and utilize the music in your own videos if there’s a trend.

6. Hashtags are your best friend

As explained earlier in the blog, hashtags are used in videos on TikTok, too. Hashtags are an important tool for evaluating video content and classifying it, according to the Tik Tok algorithm. That implies if you want your video to be seen by the right audience, you should utilize hashtags that are relevant to both your video and your business.

Tik Tok hashtag secrets


8 essential elements of a successful social media reel strategy. Tik Tok hashtag secrets


It’s even better if you can utilize popular TikTok hashtags that are currently getting a lot of attention and interaction. For example, you may be able to join in on a popular hashtag challenge and offer your own spin on it. These current hashtags may help you come up with ideas for your content. 

Tip: A very popular hashtag everyone uses on TikTok is #fyp (For You page), causing your reel to show up on everyone’s For You page. 

Hashtags that are currently trending might be displayed in the Trends section on your Discover page. Look up each popular hashtag to see if there are any possibilities for incorporating your brand.

As you can see, there are many essential elements to a successful social media reel strategy. By having all of these pieces in place, you’ll be able to increase brand awareness, drive traffic to your website and boost sales. Are you ready to create a successful social media reel for your business? Sign-up to our newsletter and we’ll help get you started!

Matthew Goulart

|13 minutes read

Matthew Goulart is the founder of Ignite Digital, a Canadian digital marketing agency. Through Ignite Digital, Goulart works with Fortune 500 companies and advertising agencies from around the world and has helped launch profitable and highly successful digital marketing initiatives for his clients.