Destination Digital

Exploring Instagram and Reels: FAQs Answered

Instagram has become a popular platform for sharing photos, videos, and stories. With the introduction of Reels, a relatively new video feature for the platform, launched in response to the popularity of TikTok, users have even more creative options to engage with their followers.

In this blog post, we will address frequently asked questions about Instagram and Reels to help you navigate and make the most out of these features.


What is a Carousel?

A carousel refers to a type of Instagram post where you can share multiple photos or videos in a single swipeable post. It allows you to showcase a series of images or videos within one cohesive post, providing a seamless browsing experience for your followers.


What is a Reel?

A Reel is a feature on Instagram that allows users to create and share short videos. Similar to TikTok, Reels enables you to record and edit 15 to 60-second videos with various creative tools and effects. You can add music, text, stickers, filters, and even speed up or slow down your videos to make them more engaging and entertaining.


Why Should I Create Reels?

With Reels being Instagram’s big new feature, the platform tends to favour accounts that create them. This means the algorithm is now tailored towards pushing Reels in front of as many faces as possible. So, if you create a Reel, it’s likely you’ll see higher impressions and engagements than if you were to use a static image, as Instagram isn’t favouring these types of posts as much.


What’s the difference between a Reel and a video post?

The main difference between a Reel and a video post on Instagram lies in their format and purpose. Reels are specifically designed for short, creative videos and provide a dedicated space for discovery within the Reels tab. Video posts, on the other hand, can be longer and are typically shared within your feed or on IGTV. Reels offer additional tools and features, making them ideal for quick, attention-grabbing content creation.


What are templates?

Templates in the context of Instagram and Reels refer to pre-designed layouts or frames that can be used to create visually appealing posts. They often include placeholders for images or text, allowing users to insert their own content while following a specific design theme or aesthetic. Templates make it easier to create consistent and eye-catching posts without starting from scratch.


How long can a Reel be?

Reels can be between 15 and 60 seconds long, giving you a decent time frame to showcase your creativity and capture your audience’s attention. The flexibility in duration allows you to experiment with different video ideas and storytelling techniques within the allotted time.


How long *should* a Reel be?

The ideal length for a Reel depends on various factors, including your content, audience, and the message you want to convey. While the maximum duration is 60 seconds, it’s important to keep in mind that shorter videos often perform better on social media platforms. Aim to deliver your message effectively within the first few seconds to maximize engagement. Concise and captivating Reels tend to have a higher chance of capturing viewers’ attention and keeping them engaged throughout the video.


How do you mute the audio from your video so that it doesn’t post on a Reel with the sound?

To mute the audio from your video before posting it as a Reel, follow these steps:

  • After recording or selecting the video for your Reel, tap on the volume icon located at the top of the screen during the editing process.
  • This will disable the audio, ensuring that the Reel is posted without sound.


How do you save an audio you have found on Reels?

If you come across an audio track on Reels that you’d like to save for future use, here’s how you can do it:

  • Open the Reel containing the audio you wish to save.
  • Tap on the audio title located at the bottom-left corner of the screen.
  • This will take you to a separate page dedicated to that audio.
  • Tap on the “Save” icon (usually a bookmark or flag) on the right side of the screen to save the audio to your Instagram library.


How do you save a post that has a template you like that you’ve found on Reels?

If you find a post on Reels that utilizes a template you want to save and use, follow these steps:

  • Open the Reel post containing the template you like.
  • Tap on the template or design to enlarge it.
  • On the bottom-right corner of the screen, you’ll find a bookmark icon.
  • Tap on the bookmark icon to save the post with the template to your Saved collection on Instagram.


How do you find your saved audios in the music library?

To access your saved audios in the music library on Instagram, follow these steps:

  • Open Instagram and go to your profile.
  • Tap on the three horizontal lines at the top-right corner of the screen to open the menu.
  • Scroll down and select “Saved.”
  • In the Saved section, tap on “Music” to view all the audio tracks you have saved.


Why can’t I find an audio I have heard in the music library?

If you can’t find an audio track you have heard before in the music library, there could be a few reasons:

  • The audio may have been removed or restricted by the creator, making it unavailable for public use.
  • It’s possible that the audio was limited to a specific region or country, and therefore, it may not be accessible to users outside that location.
  • Instagram’s algorithm may not have indexed the audio yet, so it might not appear in the library immediately. Try checking back later to see if it becomes available.
  • Also, the search function in the music library just isn’t very good! It’s hard to find a sound you know the name of, nevermind anything else!


How to you find saved posts that you saved for a template?

To locate the saved posts that you have bookmarked specifically for templates, follow these steps:

  • Open Instagram and go to your profile.
  • Tap on the three horizontal lines at the top-right corner of the screen to open the menu.
  • Scroll down and select “Saved.”
  • In the Saved section, tap on “Collections.”
  • Find the collection where you have saved the template-related posts, and tap on it to access the saved posts within that collection.


Why can’t I post something with the audio I have found?

There could be a few reasons why you’re unable to post something with the audio you have found on Instagram from a technical point of view:

  • The audio may be copyright protected, and Instagram’s content recognition system has identified it as infringing upon copyright laws. In such cases, Instagram restricts the use of copyrighted audio to avoid potential legal issues.
  • The audio may have been removed or restricted by the creator, making it unavailable for use in new posts.
  • If you’re experiencing technical issues, try restarting the Instagram app or updating it to the latest version to ensure you have access to all features.

However, another reason could be the type of account you have. There are three types of account for Instagram – personal profiles, creator accounts and business accounts.

If you find an audio that was on a personal or creator profile and try and reuse it on your business account, the audio may not be copyright released for you to do this.


Why are Instagram Reels & TikTok’s music libraries so different?

If you’ve tried creating content on both Instagram Reels and TikTok, then you’ll have noticed that they have different restrictions when it comes to using trending sounds and songs. This is due to the platforms having different copyright agreements in place with artists and music labels.

Find out more on our blog here, where we also give you some handy tips & tricks for working around music restrictions.


What are stickers on Reels?

Stickers on Reels are interactive graphic elements that you can add to your videos to enhance engagement and creativity. These stickers are designed to be placed on top of your Reel and can include various features such as emojis, GIFs, countdown timers, polls, quizzes, question boxes, and more. Stickers are a fun and interactive way to encourage viewers to interact with your content and express their opinions or reactions.


What are the best stickers to use on Reels?

The choice of stickers depends on the type of content you are creating and the engagement you want to generate. Here are a few popular stickers that can add value to your Reels:

  • Emoji Slider: Allows viewers to express their opinion on a sliding scale, making it ideal for feedback or rating-based content.
  • Poll Sticker: Lets you ask a question with two customizable answer options, perfect for gathering opinions or conducting quick surveys.
  • Question Box Sticker: Allows your audience to ask you questions directly, making it great for Q&A sessions or encouraging audience interaction.
  • Countdown Sticker: Creates anticipation for an upcoming event or announcement by displaying a countdown timer.
  • Quiz Sticker: Engages viewers with multiple-choice questions, making it entertaining and informative.

Experiment with different stickers to find the ones that resonate best with your audience and the goals of your Reels.


How do you invite someone to be a collaborator on a Reel?

To invite someone to collaborate on a Reel, follow these steps:

  • Start creating a Reel as you normally would, either by recording a video or selecting one from your camera roll.
  • Before finalizing the Reel, you’ll have the option to add collaborators. Tap on the “Collab” button on the bottom-left corner of the screen.
  • Search for the Instagram username of the person you want to invite as a collaborator.
  • Once you find the desired account, tap on their profile and then tap the “Invite to Collaborate” button.

The invited collaborator will receive a notification, and if they accept, they can contribute to the Reel by adding their own video clip to it.


Why should you invite someone to be a collaborator on a Reel?

Inviting someone to be a collaborator on a Reel can bring several benefits:

  • It fosters creativity and diversity by incorporating different perspectives and talents into the Reel.
  • Collaborators can help you expand your reach as their followers will also be exposed to the Reel, potentially leading to new followers and increased engagement.
  • It allows for shared promotion and cross-promotion, benefiting both collaborators by increasing their visibility and building a stronger community.
  • Collaborators can bring unique skills or expertise that complement your content, resulting in a more well-rounded and engaging Reel.
  • Collaborations on Reels can be a powerful way to build connections, create exciting content, and reach new audiences.


How do you tag people on Reels?

To tag people in your Reels, follow these steps:

  • While creating or editing your Reel, tap on the “Tag People” option at the bottom-left corner of the screen.
  • Use the search bar to find the Instagram username of the person you want to tag.
  • Tap on their profile and confirm the tag.
  • The tagged person will receive a notification and their username will be displayed in the Reel.

Tagging people in your Reels helps give credit to others involved in the content, promotes collaborations, and allows viewers to discover new accounts.


How do you schedule Reels and posts in Instagram?

Go to ‘advanced settings’ at the bottom of your draft post, which you will find just above the ‘share now’ button. This will allow you to choose a time and a date to schedule your posts, which can be good for using your time most efficiently, or if you have places to be when you should also be posting to your social timelines.


What are the drawbacks of scheduling Reels in Instagram?

If using scheduling, there are some drawbacks. For instance you can’t schedule a post that has a collaborator on it, so this would need to be done live. If you animate text on your Reel, this will also become static and not animated, so again live posting is the only way around this for now.


What are Stories on Instagram?

Stories on Instagram are a feature that allows users to share photos, videos, and text content that disappear after 24 hours. They appear at the top of the Instagram app’s main screen and are represented by profile icons in a horizontal bar. Stories provide a more casual and ephemeral way of sharing moments and updates with your followers.

Key features of Instagram Stories include:

  • Temporary nature: Stories automatically disappear after 24 hours, making them perfect for sharing moments that are less permanent or don’t require a permanent spot on your profile.
  • Multimedia content: You can share photos, videos, boomerangs (short looping videos), text, stickers, GIFs, polls, and interactive features to engage with your audience.
  • Editing options: Instagram Stories offer a range of creative tools like filters, text styles, drawing tools, and stickers to enhance your content and make it more visually appealing.
  • Audience engagement: Viewers can react to Stories with emoji reactions, reply through direct messages, or interact with interactive stickers like polls, question boxes, quizzes, and more.
  • Highlights and archives: You have the option to save your Stories as Highlights, which appear as featured albums on your profile. You can also access your past Stories in the Archive section for future reference.

Stories provide a more spontaneous and immersive way to share your daily experiences, behind-the-scenes moments, or interactive content with your Instagram followers.


What can Stories do that Reels can’t?

Stories have the ability to add a number of stickers that aren’t possible in Reels. So for instance you can tag products or link to your Shop if you have this set up. You can also add a link sticker to get people to click through to your website from a Story. This is a huge advantage, given that outbound links are not possible from any other type of post within Instagram.


How do I make Stories show on my profile for longer than 24 hours?

To make Stories show on your profile for longer than 24 hours, you can save them as Highlights. Highlights are collections of Stories that you can feature on your Instagram profile. Here’s how you can make your Stories last beyond the 24-hour mark:

  • Create a Story: Open the Instagram app and tap on your profile picture or swipe right from your feed to access the Story camera. Create a Story by capturing photos or videos, adding text, stickers, or other interactive elements.
  • Save as Highlight: After you’ve created your Story, tap on the “Highlight” icon located at the bottom-right corner of the screen. It looks like a heart-shaped icon with a plus sign.
  • Choose or Create a Highlight: If you already have existing Highlights, you can select one to add the Story to. Otherwise, tap the “+” icon to create a new Highlight and give it a name.
  • Edit Cover: Once you’ve added the Story to a Highlight, you’ll have the option to choose a cover photo for that Highlight. You can select a frame from the Story itself or upload a custom image.
  • Save: Tap “Add” or “Save” to confirm, and your Story will be saved as a Highlight on your profile.

By saving your Stories as Highlights, you can keep them accessible on your profile for as long as you want, providing viewers with a chance to revisit the content even after the initial 24-hour period.


Top tip for using Reels and Stories together

We like to post Reels to the timeline on the main grid and then 24 hours later, share the Reel to the Stories. This gives the Reel enough time to gain its own traction, followed by a boost by sharing to Stories.

If there is a theme or a campaign you are running via some of your posts or Reels, you can also make a Highlight to showcase just this facet of your social posts in the highlight. Multiple Highlights can be pinned to the top of your profile to showcase multiple events, offers or campaigns that you might be running alongside each other.


Top tip on using ‘pinning’ of posts on your grid

Instagram has always historically presented posts in reverse chronological order, which can be a shame if you have something you want to highlight for a while.

The platform now allows you to pin up to three posts at the top of your main Instagram grid, which is useful for keeping some posts in focus for longer.

Additionally, you can also post up to 3 Reels in the Reels grid too. This gives you the potential to have 6 pinned items at the top of your profile to give more focus to the posts that are important to you.


How do you create a QR code for your Instagram account?

2022 in review Google Ads partners

An easy way to get customers who visit your shop or business to follow you on Instagram is to pin your personal QR code up on the wall or on your counter!

Here is ours.

How do you do this, we hear you ask? Well, if you head over to Instagram and tap your profile icon in the bottom-right of your screen, you’ll be able to see a menu icon (=) in the top-right. Tap this, click “QR code” and voilà – you have your own QR code! Simply tap on the “Share profile” button and you can opt to save image to your phone, message it to yourself or print it off.


We hope these FAQs have provided you with a better understanding of Instagram, Reels, and their features. Remember to stay creative, experiment with different content formats, and have fun sharing your experiences with your audience. Happy posting!


For a step-by-step walkthrough of creating an Instagram Reel, check out our blog: Everything You Need to Know About How to Make an Instagram Reel.


Read more

We hope that you found this article useful. Take a look at the other social media help articles we’ve put together:

We’re sure there will be additions to this list, so maybe bookmark this page if you found it helpful.


Contact us

If you’d like help with your social media marketing, email us on or give us a call on 01629 810199 for a quick chat.

contact us

If you’d like help with digital marketing, ads management, SEO, copywriting, websites, branding or social media management… or anything else related to the internet and digital, then get in touch with us. We’re a friendly bunch.

You can email us on or give us a call on 01629 810199 or you can use the contact form at the bottom of this page.