1 video, 47 uses: Maximizing your Instagram content
When it comes to social media, video is king, queen and the entire royal court. After all, who hasn’t lost two hours scrolling the infinite feed?
Video has exploded in popularity on social media. People are twice as likely to share video over other content types…and Instagram knows it. With the platform doubling down on video content in 2022, it goes without saying that video should be part of your Instagram content strategy.
But behind every 15-second video is hours of unseen work. That’s why it’s worth getting as much use, and reuse, out of your Instagram videos as possible.
By the end of this article, you should have a good sense of how you can repurpose your Instagram content—new and old—in ways that will maximize your reach and impact.
What makes a video successful on Instagram?
With Instagram making recent changes (RIP, IGTV…), let’s review the video formats available on the platform:
- Reels: Vertical, full-screen videos that can be up to 60 seconds long with major impact.
- Instagram Videos: Replacing the IGTV tab on your profile, all videos that aren’t Reels fall into this category. Including Lives you’ve posted and formerly-branded IGTV videos. These can range from seconds to an hour (for certain accounts).
- Stories: Ephemeral vertical content that appears in 15-second clips.
- Lives: Live videos that you can share to your feed as a regular video after the fact.
So what works best?
“Our top videos on Instagram over the last year have been Reels. Specifically Reels that inspire and offer immediate value for viewers,” Sprout Social’s Social Media Strategist Olivia Jepson tells us. But it depends on what you want to showcase and what fits your brand. “The shorter the video the better, but don’t sacrifice good storytelling. Consider what’s absolutely essential for viewers to get out of a video you’re producing.”
How do you know what videos to repurpose?
Not every video is worthy of your repurposing efforts. Identify your most popular Instagram videos. This will help you choose videos that resonated with your audience and have potential to perform well on other platforms.
Using a tool like Sprout Social, for example, you can quickly find this data in the Instagram Business Profiles Report (pictured below) or the Post Performance Report.
Why should you repurpose Instagram videos?
Repurposing video in new formats and on new channels can expand your audience, give you more content and increase opportunities for engagement.
You might even find more success with a video on a new channel. Take this sea otter video, for example. It performed very well on Instagram, earning more than 300,000 views and 18,000 Likes.
But when repurposed on TikTok, the video blew up, receiving more than 1 million views and gaining the Shedd Aquarium account thousands of followers.
On that note, let’s dive into 47 ways you can repurpose Instagram content to get the most out of your videos.
47 ways to repurpose your Instagram video content
Repurposing Instagram video within Instagram
We know, super meta (not that kind of meta). Repurposing an existing video into new formats extends its impact and helps fill your Instagram content calendar.
Here are a few ways to do this:
1. Reformat as a Reel
Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg recently said that Reels has become the main driver of engagement growth on Instagram.
“Reels are and will continue to be king for discoverability and awareness,” Olivia tells us. With Instagram prioritizing Reels in 2022 and Reels displaying in multiple Feeds, now is a great time to add them to your strategy. Repurpose longer videos into snackable Reels to make them more shareable and discoverable.
Pro tip: If you have a horizontal video that you want to turn into a vertical Reel, use an editing app like Canva to crop your video into a Reels-ready aspect ratio.
2. Create carousels
Bannersnack found that carousels (posts containing multiple photos or videos that you can swipe through) have the highest engagement rates of all types of Instagram posts, especially when they feature a mix of videos and photos. Carousels typically appear multiple times in the feed and require more engagement from viewers.
Here are creative ways to repurpose Instagram videos as carousels:
3. Quote posts
Turn shareable quotes in your video into graphics.
4. Facts or statistics
Transform data in your video into a carousel “data report.”
5. Tips or how-tos
Is your video a “how to” guide? Break each step down into a carousel of clips, or screenshots and graphics.
6. Featured clips
Feature “best-of” clips.
7. Use Stories
With 500+ million people using Stories daily, they get your content in front of an active audience and beat the algorithmic feed. Break up your longer videos into Stories. Build a step-by-step Story guide, a listicle viewers can tap through, feature top five moments or quotes from a longer video—get creative.
Pro tip: Olivia says, “Resharing Reels/videos on Stories almost always gives it more life and views. Consider sharing it more than once across a week or a few weeks to capture different people within your audience.”
8. Build Story content into Highlights
Turning Stories new and old into Highlights gives your ephemeral content new life. Use Highlights as areas to tell different stories, and choose a Highlight cover that brings your brand colors and graphics to life.
9. Turn longer videos into short-form
2021 data found 58% of viewers will watch a whole video if it’s under a minute, but only 24% of viewers will watch an entire video that’s more than 20 minutes. Repurpose longer videos—like former IGTV or Live content—as shorter clips.
Sprout did this with our Always On Instagram series. We shared 3-4 minute videos on Instagram, then created 30-second cutdowns for our Feed and stories. “The cutdowns create intrigue and offer immediate value, while the longer video shares a full story with multiple takeaways that our audience could digest,” Olivia tells us.
10. Spruce up your video with branding
Give old videos a refresh by posting them with branded frames, logos, title cards, graphics and more with an app like Canva.
11. Get new life out of your Lives
You can share your Instagram Lives—both new and old ones from your archive—as Instagram Videos in your feed. Share your entire Live, or break it up into short, shareable chunks.
12. Make your old videos more accessible
Adding captions to your videos is a best practice when it comes to accessibility. But did you know 79% of videos online are watched without the sound on? If you have captionless videos you’re reposting or repurposing into Reels or Stories, be sure to add captions.
13. Refresh your ads
With organic engagement dipping on Instagram recently, now is a great time to start making use of Instagram ads. Instagram Story ads have been performing particularly well for brands, with a low CPM and high performance overall.
14. Create Instagram Guides
As defined by Instagram, Guides are “a curated flow of posts with commentary—which is great for step-by-step guides, tips and recommendations.” These curated posts can be yours or from other accounts. Include existing video posts in a Guide to use this relatively new feature.
15. Re-share your greatest hits
If enough time has passed—around six months or more, ideally—reshare old, successful content as a throwback, reminder or as a culturally-relevant piece. This will please existing fans who recognize the video, as well as new fans who are seeing it for the first time.
Repurposing Instagram content on other social media platforms
Not everyone is on Instagram. Repurposing your Instagram content on other social media platforms extends your reach, helps you fill your content calendar and extends the life of your videos.
16. Turn to TikTok
It’s TikTok’s world—we just post in it. If you’re using TikTok to grow your business, extend the reach of your Instagram content by posting your Reels on TikTok. Be sure to add captions and text in TikTok’s editor—the more native a video feels to a platform, the better it tends to perform. Check out our Instagram Reels vs TikTok account.
Pro tip: Beware of sharing your TikTok as a Reel—Instagram won’t promote Reels that have the TikTok watermark on them.
17. Share your video to Facebook
Before we all dive into the Facebook Metaverse, there are plenty of video formats to get creative with on the platform right now.
18. Share as a post
For in-feed posts, Facebook recommends vertical or square video.
19. Create a short-form Reel
With Facebook prioritizing short-form videos in the News Feed, appease the algorithm by repurposing your short-form videos and Reels from Instagram into Reels on Facebook.
Reels can be viewed in a new, dedicated News Feed section, or at the top of the regular News Feed where Stories and Rooms display.
Elect to have your Instagram Reels shared on Facebook automatically when you publish, or save them after publishing to reshare them on Facebook. (Heads up—you may need to add music back in on Facebook.)
20. Make a Facebook Story
Facebook Stories give you prime real estate at the top of the News Feed. With 500 million people using them every day, they’re a feature worth trying.
21. Create ads on your social media channels
Video can boost campaign conversion rates by 34%, and 87% of video marketers say they see a positive return on investment for videos.
If you have the budget for paid ads, stay competitive against Facebook’s organic reach and other brands’ paid content by turning your videos into ads.
22. Share your video to Twitter
Tweet out horizontal and square videos you originally made for Instagram on Twitter—as long as it’s 2 minutes and 20 seconds long or less. Just make sure you’ve resized to the ideal aspect ratios—square, portrait or horizontal.
Try posting your videos on Twitter as…
23. Share a short-form video
In the race to compete with TikTok, Twitter also announced they’re testing a short-form video “Explore” page feature. While this feature isn’t yet available to all, now is a good time to get used to video post best practices and identify which top-performing short-form Instagram videos you want to repurpose for this new vertical video Twitter feed.
Six updates including drag and drop content calendar have arrived!
Learn more: https://t.co/swR6HmPmXr pic.twitter.com/81dMJLUlHZ
— Sprout Social (@SproutSocial) February 7, 2022
24. Break out tips as a Twitter Thread
Similar to the carousel ideas above, breaking out tips from your video into an informative thread is a great way to encourage engagement and to educate your audience.
Step on the gas. It’s time to accelerate into the future of social. [Thread]
✨Introducing The 2021 Sprout Social Index, Edition XVII: https://t.co/BlowGcxMHZ pic.twitter.com/V8vk16kcYU
— Sprout Social (@SproutSocial) June 15, 2021
25. Share as a series
Breaking down your video into short snippets to share as a series of Tweets over time is a great way to get more posts out of just one piece of content.
Pro tip: Scheduling your content with a tool like Sprout Social can help you stay on track and ensure your posts are spaced out.
26. Lead with a question
Tweet out a question or poll to encourage engagement, then Tweet out the video later as the answer.
27. Share your video to LinkedIn
LinkedIn is no longer a place to share job postings and nothing more. The platform has gone through an overhaul of changes recently and has become a go-to hub for high-level content.
Here are a few ideas…
28. Share data points
Share stats and discoveries mentioned in your video as graphics or screenshots. As a professional network and learning tool, LinkedIn is a great home for thought leadership and industry insights.
29. Create a Live stream
Utilizing LinkedIn Live is a great way to reach new audiences with your previously live-streamed content—just be transparent that the event is a rebroadcast.
30. Repurpose short-form video posts
LinkedIn will be one of the next social media platforms focusing on short-form video—feeling déjà vu yet?
This could be a great fit for repurposing educational, product-focused, company culture or thought leadership Instagram videos. Recent data shows 68% of video marketers plan to include LinkedIn in their video marketing strategy in 2022—up 5% from last year. Give your LinkedIn an audit to see where video could fit in.
31. Use video to create a helpful Product Page
LinkedIn’s Product Pages are where brands with multiple products can feature each offering, its features and even its customers. If you have any case study videos, product demos or tip videos, use them to beef up your Product Pages.
32. Share quotes
If you have Instagram videos featuring inspiring thought leadership ideas or quotes, turn those into shareable content on LinkedIn in text posts or as graphics.
33. Create thought leadership content
Repurpose a video by translating the tips and ideas it features into a shareable thought leadership post or LinkedIn article.
Or, break down the key takeaways from the video into a text post and share the video alongside it to give viewers multiple ways to consume the content.
34. Share PDFs or slides
If you have a long, informative Instagram Video, turn it into a shareable PDF or set of Slides. This is a unique kind of content you can share on LinkedIn and fits in well with this professional network.
35. Upload your video to YouTube
You can always upload your content as a single video and call it a day. But here are a few ways to take it a step further.
36. Use YouTube Shorts
You know where this is going, right? In an appeal to creators, YouTube debuted Shorts as a place to share short, often funny videos that can be monetized. Shorts recently reached five trillion views, making it a proven tool to consider using to repurpose your Reels and more.
37. Create a playlist around shorter video clips
If your video is longer and contains multiple concepts or how-tos, consider breaking it up into clips that can be shared together in a playlist. This can boost SEO for several topics, and can make each section shareable on its own.
Pro tip: Why does SEO matter for videos? YouTube is a video sharing platform, but it’s also one of the world’s most popular search engines. Videos you host on YouTube can show up in a Google search, as well, so make sure you think about SEO when crafting your video’s title and description.
38. Pin on Pinterest
If you’re looking to grow your Pinterest account, using video is a great way to start. The platform is investing in video and creators. According to Pinterest, video views on the platform increased 100% year-over-year in Q4 2020, and the platform is growing in popularity with younger populations.
Here are a few video features to look into:
39. Idea Pins
Made for creators to be more active on Pinterest, this video feature is somewhere between Stories and TikTok. With Idea Pins getting 9x the average comment rate compared to normal Pins, try wearing your creator hat and repurposing your vertical Reels and Stories on Pinterest.
40. Video Pins
If you’ve added your Instagram video to YouTube, Pin the video directly from YouTube. Or, upload the video as a Video Pin. You can also include a head-turning cover image that emphasizes your brand.
41. Share on Snapchat
If your brand has a younger Gen Z and millennial audience, leveraging Snapchat for business could give your vertical video content another place to reach your target audience.
42. Keep an eye out for new opportunities
Even Reddit recently rolled out a short-form video button. With platforms quickly evolving and adapting to keep up with the popularity of short-form video, there are bound to be more and more new features rolling out in the social space.
Repurpose your Instagram video outside of social media platforms
43. Add Instagram videos to your website or portfolio
Video can bring your brand’s story to life. Recent data shows 68% of consumers prefer watching a video to learn about new products or services vs reading articles, presentations, infographics or ebooks.
Using videos from Instagram that demo your product, tell you brand’s story or (if you’re a filmmaker or videographer) highlight your work can add a dynamic element to your website or portfolio.
44. Use your video in email campaigns and newsletters
If there’s one key takeaway from this article, it’s that video is powerful. According to Vidyard, Igloo Software boosted their email click through rate by 189% by using more video.
Embedding video in your email newsletter, like the example below, is a great way to give your content new life and drive viewers to your website, YouTube or social channels.
45. Create GIFs or screenshots
GIF responsibly—this can easily be cheesy. But making informative, sharable or even funny GIFs out of your content can create visual elements that can be used in everything from emails to Tweet responses.
Hot or iced, always nice. 💚💚 Pistachio Latte pic.twitter.com/94pMP5V5EP
— Starbucks Coffee (@Starbucks) January 25, 2022
46. Write a blog post
While we live in a video-centric social world, blog posts are important tools for SEO, education and thought leadership. Create a blog post from the content of your video, and include the video in your blog post to give readers two ways to interact with your content and to integrate your content marketing efforts.
Competition on social is accelerating and brands have solutions at their fingertips to stand out and help consumers cross the finish line. #Infographic https://t.co/BlowGcxMHZ pic.twitter.com/hcvnEVPp9g
— Sprout Social (@SproutSocial) January 18, 2022
47. Create an infographic
Infographics are a shareable and visually creative way of sharing educational information, data points, guides and more. They’re super shareable, especially on highly visual platforms like Pinterest, can build your backlinks and are classically effective.
Stay organized: Create an Instagram content calendar to track your repurposed content
Repurposing just one Instagram video can provide you with dozens of pieces of content. Make sure you’re peppering that content throughout your channels and over time strategically—not all at once.
Scheduling your posts ahead of time keeps you organized and helps you reach your audience when they’re ready to engage. With Instagram switching back to the chronological feed, ensuring you are publishing content when your audience is most active will be crucial.
Create an Instagram content calendar to keep yourself organized. And to take this a step further, save time by using a publishing tool to schedule your content at peak posting times.
Sprout’s publishing calendar can serve as a way to view how your content is being distributed over time, as well as a way to schedule ahead of time, giving you more time to think strategically.
Give your Instagram content new life
If a picture is worth a thousand words, a video is worth millions—why let that content go to waste?
It’s easy to stress about how to create content for Instagram or how to create enough content for all of your social channels. Starting with what you have and maximizing the impact of one video can go a long way.
Make repurposing your Instagram videos part of your 2022 social media marketing strategy to start the year strong.
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