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5 Reasons why your Instagram Reels Aren't Working

Updated: Dec 8, 2023

Do you feel like you're putting in the effort to create engaging reels, but not seeing the results you expected? You're not alone. Many people struggle with getting their reels to generate the desired impact and engagement. Instagram reels have become one of the most effective marketing tools for businesses and creators. Social media is a must to connect with your audience and build a strong online presence. However, with the ever-changing algorithms and the growing competition for attention, it can be challenging to understand why your reels aren't working as effectively as you hoped.

Creating successful reels requires a combination of strategic planning, understanding your target audience, and staying up-to-date with the latest trends and algorithm updates. It's important to identify the "dont's" you might be making that are hindering the performance of your posts. Below are five common reasons why your social media posts may not be achieving the desired results and provide insights on how to improve your strategy.

Top 5 Reasons Your Social Posts Aren't Working

  • Videos Are too Long

  • Inaffective use of Captions

  • Working Font is Unattractive

  • Too Much Clutter in the Post

  • Not Editing to the Music

Videos Are too Long

If your social media posts aren't working, it could be due to the video length not being appropriate for the intended audience or favored by the algorithm. To ensure that your videos are engaging and retain viewer interest, it's important to keep them between 6-10 seconds. This can be frustrating as 6-10 seconds is not a lot of time to get a message across, but the shorter the video, the more likely the video will be replayed by the viewer, resulting in more views, which will boost the video to a larger audience.

When editing your videos, consider using techniques such as jump cuts or speeding up certain parts of the video to condense the content without losing the main message. This will help to maintain viewer engagement and keep their attention throughout the video.

Inaffective use of Captions

The key to generating more views is a long caption. The caption is where you should put most of your information. While viewers read your caption, your video is looping in the background, so the longer you can keep them on the caption, the more views you'll generate from them.

To drive people to read your captions, add text on the video that provides a strong hook, followed by "read the caption for more" or "in the caption". Your hook can be a problem that your viewers may be facing while the caption offers a solution, or it could say something similar to, "3 reasons why your social media posts aren't working." This is when you would follow with, "reasons in caption below." When people consume media, they want to get something out of it. Providing valuable information for your viewers will result in more views, likes, and follows.

Wording Font is Unattractive

The thing about reels is that you have one second to grab the viewers attention. That first second of your video is everything. One thing that would turn your viewers away from your reel could be that the font you're using is not visually appealing or easy to read. The choice of font plays a critical role in capturing the attention of your audience and conveying your message effectively.

To make your social media posts more visually appealing, consider revising the font you use. Choose a font that is clear, easy to read, and visually appealing, while also keeping your target audience in mind. Look at other videos that have success within your niche and notice the types of fonts that they're using. Avoid overly decorative or distracting fonts that may make it difficult for your audience to engage with your content.

By selecting a font that is aesthetically pleasing, easy to read, and resonates with your target audience, you can enhance the overall impact of your social media posts and encourage more interaction from your audience. Remember, the font you choose can greatly influence the success of your social media efforts, so be sure to select one that best represents your brand and message.

Too much Clutter

Your social media posts have too much going on in the frame. It's hard for your audience to know what to pay attention to, resulting in them moving onto to the next video in their feed. When trying to get your message across on social media, it can be easy to overload the frame with too much clutter. Your videos should be simple and focused on one key message that will stick in people's minds. Too much clutter, from multiple images, complex designs or confusing captions, can create a disorganized look that won't capture your audience’s attention.

Take some time to declutter your posts and make sure they are concise and easy to understand. Use fewer images, simpler designs and clear captions that will help you communicate your message in an organized manner. Remember to add a hook in the video, but keep it short, saving all the information you want to get across for your caption. The video is a tool to grabbing your viewer's attention. By decluttering your reels, you'll lead viewers to watch it through and read the caption.

Not editing to the music

We've talked about grabbing your viewer's attention at the very beginning. When creating reels, it's important to understand the impact that editing to the music can have on that initital attention grabbing. A lot of popular audios on Instagram have a certain beat that should always be utilized when editing your videos. Precise timing and rhythm to those beats are crucial for creating a video that grabs attention and keeps the viewers engaged. There is truly nothing worse than watching a video that uses a lot of cuts, but none of them are to the beat.

By avoiding the distraction of poorly timed music during the editing process, creators can fully concentrate on achieving the best timing and rhythm for their videos. This ultimately leads to a more cohesive and engaging final product that resonates with the audience.


Instagram reels have become a crucial aspect of any marketing strategy, as they allow businesses to connect with their audience and share valuable content. However, if your videos are too long, your captions aren't long enough, you're using unattractive fonts and clutter, and your reels aren't edited to the music, they may not have the impact you're hoping they will. You can spend hours on a reel, but if you don't pay attention to these 5 common mistakes to avoid, it may be a waste of your time. To ensure that your reels are effective, it's important to address these issues and create visually appealing and engaging content, resulting in a more successful Instagram account overall.

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