Since their launch, Instagram and Facebook Reels ads have become a powerful format, enabling brands to connect with a vast audience that are hungry for immersive, bite-sized entertainment.
Advertisers that have adopted Reels ads are seeing many positive brand and performance outcomes. An example of this can be seen through a test with CPG brands where it was found that the addition of Reels ads to their campaigns led to a 54% increase in incremental ad recall, and a 93% increase in incremental purchase intent.
The most effective Reels ads are the ones that feature creative that matches the look and feel of organic Reels content. Unlike other ad placements where the goal is to stand out from the crowd, the Reels format rewards advertisers who can successfully blend-in among organic content while still communicating their brand message.
Let’s take a look at a few examples of brands that understood this assignment.
By drawing inspiration from these creative examples, you can improve the effectiveness of your own Reels ads, allowing you to better achieve your campaign objectives.
One of the best ways to connect with Reels audiences is to heavily feature influencer/creator content in your creative. Above, you can see an example of Verizon using this approach. The result of using this footage is that it allows you to promote your product/service in a more authentic and genuine manner. This is further supported through the use of platform-native copy and the use of emojis.
2. American Airlines
To effectively deliver a message through your Reels ad, holding audience attention is vital. The American Airlines example above achieves this by having various scenes tied together with visually impactful transitions that allow the video move through to its conclusion in an efficient manner without losing engagement.
Transitions between scenes is something often overlooked in ad creative. With Reels, however, these need to be a key consideration – they keep your ad moving along at a good pace. If your creative is slow and stagnant, chances are viewers will scroll to something else after a few seconds.
The ROLO example above highlights the right way to do a product-focused Reels ad. Instead of the traditional approach of showing off the product and its characteristics, the ad focuses on highlighting three different ways that the ROLO chocolate can be used in baking recipes. Reels is a space that people go to find this type of inspiration. By tailoring the creative to this viewer mindset, it gives the ad a better chance of driving high engagement.
The example above from luxury bedware brand, Brooklininen, is a great example of how to craft a video for Reels using a variety of editing techniques.
Firstly, the video uses a trending photo cutout animation to quickly transition between images. Secondly, it uses a vertical split-screen, making the most of the vertical frame and condensing footage to showcase different scenes within a shorter timeframe. The last thing to note is the dynamic, fast-pacing of the video; this helps to maintain audience attention while also allowing the video to convey a lot of information within its 15-second duration.
The first three seconds of your Reels creative are crucial for stopping rapidly scrolling thumbs in their tracks.
One of the most effective ways to capture attention early is by using humor. Language app, Babbel, took this approach in the example above, using humor to hook audiences before delivering their main messaging. In this example, the ad’s humor is achieved through using creator footage; a strategy that also gives the ad a more native, authentic feel, helping it to resonate more with the audience.
The video above from fashion brand, Rumored, is another great example of how you can achieve relatable ad creative by leaning heavily into the aesthetic of organic Reels content. The creative uses repeated imagery, cutout animations, and fit-check footage—all of which are staples of organic content.
7. Angry Orange
Entertainment should be top of mind with your Reels ads. This doesn’t mean, however, that you can’t also be educational—balance the two with an “edutainment” approach.
Take a look at the Angry Orange example above. The ad is educational in that it highlights the products benefits and uses. But at the same time, the video entertains audiences through playful editing, unpolished footage, and the use of voice-over.
8. Lemon Perfect
The best way to show-off your product or service to Reels audiences is through creators or with user-generated content (UGC). This creates a more authentic interaction with your brand that will resonate better with viewers.
An example of this can be seen with the Lemon Perfect video above. The ad takes the format of an influencer product unboxing/review, a common Reels format that audiences are accustomed to seeing in their feeds. This helps the creative to function as relevant content, rather than an ad.
9. Just Spices
The Reels ad above, from German seasoning brand, Just Spices, is another example of how to show an authentic product interaction. The creative uses UGC footage showing an unboxing and product demonstration.
Another thing you’ll notice is that the video uses emojis and stickers on each frame. This is a simple, yet effective way of making the creative more native to Reels while also supporting the ad’s messaging.
One thing that’s consistent with each of the examples discussed in this article is that they can all be characterized as “lo-fi” creative. Unlike traditional video ads that are extremely polished, lo-fi ad creative dials things back; using creators and UGC rather than professional actors, and iPhones instead of film-grade cameras. This helps the creative align more with organic Reels content and be less disruptive when placed in a viewer’s feed.
You can see the lo-fi approach exemplified again with the Palmer’s example above. The ad features a mashup of UGC, with the product itself being shown in a natural manner.
Start producing effective Reels ad creative
As an official Meta Creative Partner, Shuttlerock can help you take your Reels ads to the next level, producing world-class video creative built entirely from your existing assets. To learn more, get in touch with one of our team members, or request a demo.