Today I want to talk to you about the five biggest mistakes people are making with their reels.
I’m going to assume that you have a basic understanding of reels, but even if you don’t, if you’re avoiding these things, you’re going to be off to the races.
I know reels can be a little scary, so before I start I want to say that it’s okay NOT TO BE great at something when you start. Everyone is a beginner at some point, and we all stunk at something before we started. (I don’t even want to go back and look at some of my earliest TikToks and reels) I still remember how nervous I was doing my Facebook Lives in the beginning, but now I’m comfortable being on camera because I’ve done it enough times. So, get it out of your head that you can’t be good at reels. There are so many different ways to do them, and we talk about this in my Magnetic Marketing Academy.
Here are the five biggest reels mistakes you might be making:
1) Not Using the Timer and the Editing Feature
There are great editing and timer features inside reels, and unless you intentionally want to show people you are pressing the start button and then backing up, you can set the timer for three or 10 seconds.
I highly recommend you do that. There’s no reason for you to look confused in the beginning of your reel. Also, people have very short attention spans nowadays and you being confused in the beginning of your reel is no way to start the reel. So, start to use a timer function.
There’s also an editing feature that allows you to trim your videos so that they have the perfect size you want them to be. Even if you didn’t use the timer feature, you can still edit the beginning and the end so nobody sees you pressing the on and off button on your phone.
Remember, get rid of anything that doesn’t need to be there because you want those reels to be short, tight, fun, and quick.
2) Bad Camera Angle
Looking down at your phone is probably one of the worst possible angles for you. Bring your phone up to at least eye level, maybe even a bit higher if you’re sitting down or you’re standing up. If you are doing something that requires your whole body, maybe you’re dancing or doing something funny, get that camera up as high as you can, so that you get sort of a straight angle at yourself.
If you’re serious about social media and you are serious about creating some kind of video content, get yourself a tripod and a ring light (Make sure the lighting is in front of you, not behind you!)
3) Standing too close to the camera
A lot of people are way too close to the camera. Back yourself up! You don’t need to be that close because if you’re going to put any type of copy on the reel, and your face is taking up the whole camera, there’s no place to put it. Think of it like an advertising copy – if there’s an image of someone in an ad, it’s over to the side, because you want room for the copy.
Back yourself up and make sure that there’s space. I try to put myself to one side of the camera so that I have room for what I’m going to type and put in.
4) Your Text Copy isn’t displayed properly
What I often see is that the text copy is either way too big or it’s sliding off the side.
When you type in your copy, shrink it down and if you move it around your phone, you’re going to see gridlines on the top, on the sides, and on the bottom showing you where the copy is going to be. So, all the more reason to back up, create some empty space in your reels, and have room to be able to put that copy. In general, everyone can make their copy a little bit smaller! (I say that as a 52-year old woman who has to wear glasses every time I pick up my phone)
5) Your Lip Syncing is off
If you are brand new to reels, I’m going to suggest that you DO NOT start with complicated lip syncs because it is an advanced skill. If you do a reel and your lip sync is off, the only thing people will notice about your reel is that your lip syncing is off. This way you lose people with everything else you wanted to tell them because what they see is that the words in your mouth are not matching up. I would recommend you don’t start there. Check out this list of reels that require no lip-syncing.
If you still want to do lip-syncing reels, here are a couple of things that I want you to know:
- When you press the timer, you have to start to talk at 1 on the timer, because there’s a delay between the timer and when the video starts.
- Slow down the reel: go to the speed and go to 2x. This will slow it down and you can do it slower.
1) Reel Cover
The last thing that I see people miss, which is a huge missed opportunity is to pick a cover for their reel. Instead, they let Instagram pick it automatically. Here are two things you can do:
- Edit the cover at the end before you post it.
- Pick a specific image from the reel itself or add a picture from your camera roll.
Sometimes I like to do a little title in my brand colors. If you have brand colors, you can easily change the font colors to your brand colors for the text copy. Adding that cover is a little professional touch!
2) Save cool reels
Get into a habit of saving reels that you might want to use later. When you find a reel that you want to use, copy the link and paste that in the notes section of your phone. I do this as I’m viewing Instagram. I paste it in the notes section on my phone, and I make a note of what it’s about and what I might want to do with it.
Hopefully, this has sparked some curiosity in you and if you have any questions, please feel free to get in touch with me.
In the meantime, remember, you are magnetic and people are waiting to hear what you have to say.