There’s no question that reels are dominating Instagram and have been for some time now. I was one of the ones that initially refused to create reels; they weren’t for me, I didn’t want to show my face and I knew it was such a time consuming process which put me off completely. However, over time I’ve found a process that works for me, batch create reels in advance so I’m not spending all my time on them, and I’ve worked on my confidence and stopped thinking about what other people thought.
Saying all this, I can totally understand why people won’t want to show their face in reels and pretend to dance, point, or lip sync… it can be cheesy, I know! Plus, not every business will want themselves in their content and that’s totally understandable.
So if you’re reading this knowing you should be using reels in your Instagram content, but want a workaround where you don’t have to show your face, here’s 5 Instagram reel ideas you can create without being in front of the camera!
Screen tutorials are a great way to show your audience how to do something. Some of the most useful and easy consumer reel content that I see on my feed is just phone recordings or computer recordings. There’s no need for all this fancy ass editing because at the end of the day, you want to educate that person to do this thing and if you over-edit something it can actually distract your viewers away from the actual message or tutorial. Sometimes simplifying is more effective.
Method: I recommend using a tool like Loom, Zoom or a screen recorder that may be an application on your desktop already to do your screen recordings. If you’re using your phone to do this, then it’ll most likely have a screen recorder installed (but make sure you have the microphone turned off unless you’re doing the voiceover as you do the tutorial). You can then use software like Canva to add it into a mockup and edit it. With the voiceover, you can either add this to the video in a separate app or you can just add it into Instagram straight away.
Another popular way to use reels is through drawing tutorials or simply writing on a piece of paper. You can see an example here of how this has been done. I’m sure you’ll agree when I say this is quite an effortless way of creating a reel. It’s quickly consumed, an easy way to portray a message, and doesn’t take too much time to create. If it’s deemed to be successful with your audience, you can brainstorm ideas and batch create these all in advance.
Method: The best way I would create these is by using a tripod so that you are hands free to do the actual drawing. Make sure you’re in an environment with good lighting so the video is good quality and readable. Place the tripod in a position (this may be above so it’s looking down to the paper, like a flat lay, or at an angle) and keep it in this position throughout so you get a seamless looking reel. If you want a filter on Instagram for the video, apply this and then use the Hands Free option to record (be aware of the time limit!) or simply use your own phone camera to video. Once the video is completed, think about how you want it to look in the reel. Do you want it sped up/slowed down? If it needs any extra editing, I highly recommend using the app InShot. I use this for all my reel editing.
Warning: This can be quite a long process to create.
Stop motion is effectively taking many photos of you or an object doing something and converting it into a video. I’ve seen some really clever videos doing this, check out this one from Sand Visuals, and this one from Collette Peri. If you give this a try, I’d love for you to share it with me! I always love watching these kinds of videos.
Method: For these videos to work quite seamlessly, you want to make sure your phone/camera is in a fixed position (maybe use a tripod) so the frame stays the same and it’s just the subject moving. This will be easier if there’s a second person to help you but to take the pictures you can either set it on burst mode so it takes lots of photos in seconds (and the second person can do this for you). Or you can set your timer on your camera (phone settings may be limited for this) to take photos every 0.5 second. Once you’ve got all your photos, it’s time to edit them. If you’ve used a camera, you can use video editing software like Adobe, or there’s plenty of Stop Motion specific softwares out there.
Using any of the ideas I’ve mentioned above, you can easily apply a voiceover. All you need to do is mute the original video and record the voiceover separately. You can do this either inside the Instagram app or using a voice recorder on your phone. If you’re not showing your face, another way to build the know, like and trust factor is through your voice.
One other popular reels trend is photo collage, which is very popular amongst photographers (shock). This is an effective way to showcase your work instead of just your classic grid post. This would work great if you’re a product based business. You could use it to showcase a specific product, for example if you have a Christmas related product then you can share this around Decemeber time.
I did a version of this HERE and briefly showed my face at the beginning, but this could easily be replaced with a photo of your product/service.
Tip: With any of these videos, I always use InShot to edit the reel so I can get the timing of the images spot on. It will depend on the music you’re using, but I prefer to use music that I can time each photo to the beats like I have in the example above.
And there you have it. 5 Instagram reel ideas that don’t require showing your face or being in front of the camera. Now you have no reason to avoid using reels as part of your strategy.
If you want to have a process for creating reels but not sure where to start, why not have in a power hour with me where we can map it out together?? I’d love nothing more than to see your business skyrocket through reels. You can book yours here!! We can even use this hour to create a reel together that you can share straight away – how fun would that be?