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Instagram Reels for Hair Stylists: How to Leverage Reels

Instagram Reels

Social media is a powerful marketing tool for stylists and salon owners. Due to the ever-changing nature of social media, it’s important to stay up-to-date with the latest online trends.

Instagram Reels is one of the newest and most beneficial social media tools for stylists looking to engage with their target audience in interesting and exciting ways. Here’s a closer look at what Reels are, why they’re important for stylists, and the step-by-step process of creating Reels for your business.

What are Reels?

Instagram Reels is one of the newest features the platform has rolled out that allows you to create unique video content. It is a great way to showcase shorter video clips that can live on your feed indefinitely in contrast to Stories which are only available for 24 hours.

Recently, Instagram has announced that it is favoring video content over still imagery. For this reason, utilizing Reels to showcase your content is going to be prioritized over any other type of content you post.


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Reels are a great way to showcase content that is educational, inspirational, or entertaining. Since these are shorter videos, you must captivate your audience within the first couple of seconds. If they watch the full video and preferably multiple times, the algorithm is going to pick up on how “watchable” your content is and put it in front of more people. 

Instagram Reels for Stylists

There are so many different ways that stylists can use Reels to market their businesses.

At SALT, we teach that your content should speak to the four pillars of your brand, including your personality, client experience, creative process, and after hair care. Using these topics as a foundation, you can create intriguing video content that showcases your brand in an exciting and engaging way. Keep in mind that content for reels should typically be thought of as entertaining or extremely educational in order to captivate or keep someone's interest.

How to Create Reels

To get started creating Reels to build your social media presence and reach your target audience, follow these 10 steps:

1. Decide on your focus.

Instagram Reels decide focus

First, decide what the focus of your Reel is going to be. Ask yourself: Will it be educational, inspirational, or entertaining in nature? What’s the main idea you’re trying to get across?

2. Choose your audio.

choosing audio instagram reels

Once you know what you want your Reel to be about, you’ll need to decide what type of audio you want to use. You may decide to leverage original audio (for example, if you’re creating an educational Reel explaining how to perform a particular technique), trending audio, or music.

Salt instagram reel audio selection

3. Film your content.

Next, it’s time to film your video. You can capture your footage using either the camera app in your phone or directly within the Instagram app using the Reels tool.

adding instagram reel

If you’re comfortable using other video equipment, you can do so as well and upload it to your phone or instagram later.

4. Upload your video.

If you opt to film your video in the camera app on your phone or using external equipment, your next step will be to upload your video to Instagram. To do so, open Reels on Instagram and tap the camera icon in the upper right hand corner to start a new project.

Then, tap the plus sign in the lower left hand corner to open your video library and select the video clip(s) you want to use.

Instagram reels video library

5. Edit your video.

editing clips instagram reels

Once you’ve selected the clip or clips you want to use, you’ll then need to edit them together. In Reels, use the video editing tools to adjust the length of each video clip in order to create a cohesive and engaging video.

instagram reels editing

6. Add audio.

Instagram reels audio

If you decide to leverage audio in your Reel, use the tools in the app to add your desired song or trending sound. If you’re using Reels to create educational content in the form of tutorials or walkthroughs, you may also decide to include a voiceover describing content of your video.

7. Add text.

It’s important to keep in mind that many users watch video content without sound. For this reason, it’s a good idea to add text to your Reel as it’s a great way to let people know what your video is portraying without needing sound.

Instagram reel textIf you add text to your video, make sure that it is situated in the middle portion of your screen so that it doesn’t get cut off when someone is viewing it in their feed.

8. Preview your final video.

Before publishing your Reel, take the time to review it and make sure that it is free of any errors, spelling mistakes, or audio issues.

9. Add a caption and hashtags.

To help Instagram better understand your Reel and present it to the right audience, make sure to add a relevant caption and hashtags before you publish your video.

10. Add a cover image.

adding cover image

Finally, the last step before publishing your Reel for the world to see is selecting a cover image. This is the first thing a viewer will see on your profile before watching the Reel, so make sure to choose something intriguing that accurately portrays what the viewer will see if they decide to watch the video.

editing cover image

And with that, you’re ready to publish and share your creation!

With the right mix of engaging and interesting content, you can use Reels to reach your audience in new ways. Need more inspiration when it comes to deciding what you should create? Download our Reels Content Inspirations Freebie and get creative with it!

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