How to Make a Reel on TikTok: The Complete Guide for 2024

TikTok Reels are the hot new video format taking over the app in 2024. These short, entertaining videos have all the beloved TikTok elements – viral dances, top music hits, funny meme content, and crazy effects. Reels are not only fun to create and watch, but they also offer creators huge opportunities to grow a following, collaborate with other influencers, and potentially attract brands for sponsorships.

With over 1 billion monthly active TikTok users, standing out from the crowd is essential if you want to build a popular TikTok presence. Reels are the perfect format to showcase your personality, talent, or business in a way that keeps audiences engaged for more.

Compared to regular short-form video posts, Reels have extra interactive options like green screen effects, AR filters, timers, counters and stickers. This allows for heightened creativity and entertainment value in your content. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll teach you step-by-step how to make a reel on TikTok so you can start leveraging this new format to its fullest potential.

Overview of TikTok Reels

Before diving into the creation process, let’s make sure you have a solid understanding of what TikTok Reels are and why they should be part of your content strategy.

What are TikTok Reels?

Reels are creative, 15-30 second multi-clip videos that utilize all of TikTok’s signature editing tools and interactive elements. They are designed to be even more immersive and engaging than normal TikTok videos.

With Reels, you can:

  • String multiple video clips together while using transitions, timers, effects and stickers
  • Add or record against an audio track or background music
  • Leverage green screen, AR and splice elements into a seamless end product

The result? Extremely entertaining and binge-worthy content perfect for the TikTok audience.

Reels also get highlighted within the TikTok app in various ways for extra discoverability and reach. They essentially act as “short-form videos on steroids” – packed with features users love.

Why Create Reels on TikTok?

Here’s why you should prioritize Reels within your TikTok strategy:

  • Reach New Audiences. Reels can quickly be viewed and shared with different communities.
  • Virality Potential. Formats like memes, trends and challenges can spread rapidly.
  • User Interactivity. Elements like AR filters, effects and stickers boost engagement.

Step-by-Step Guide to Making TikTok Reels

Now that you know what TikTok Reels are all about, let’s get into the step-by-step process for making them. While Reels may seem complicated at first, the creation process is actually quite simple once you know the basics.

In this section, we’ll cover:

  • Accessing the Reels tool in the TikTok app
  • Recording clips for your Reel
  • Adding music, sounds, effects and text
  • Editing your Reel
  • Posting your completed Reel

Follow along with these tips to create your first TikTok Reels that captivate any audience.

Accessing the Reels Tool

The first step is accessing the Reels tool within TikTok to start building your video. Here’s how:

  1. Open your TikTok app and go to the capture screen to record a new video as you normally would.
  2. Look for the Reels icon at the bottom of the screen – it looks like two play buttons in a circle.
  3. Tap on the Reels icon and it will open the Reels video editor.

Shooting Video for Your Reel

Once you have accessed the Reels tool, the next step is recording the raw video clips you’ll include in your final Reel.

Here are some tips for shooting great Reels content:

  • Film individual clips that are each 10-30 seconds long. You can string multiple together later.
  • Hold your phone vertically in portrait mode to match the Reels dimensions.
  • Capture clips with adequate lighting and stabilize your phone for smooth footage.
  • Put effort into shooting a variety of angles and framings to add interest during editing.
  • Feel free to record casual behind-the-scenes clips that show your personality too!

The content of your clips will depend on the general topic or theme of your Reel. But it’s always a good idea to shoot more than you need so you have options when editing to create the best 15-30 second Reel possible.

Adding Music, Sounds and Voice Overs

Music and sounds are essential parts of any engaging Reel. Let’s explore how to find trending songs or record your own audio:

Using Popular TikTok Music and Sounds

  • Browse TikTok’s music library right within the Reels editor
  • Search by keywords or tap into trending songs
  • Trim song clips and adjust volume

Recording Directly into Your Reel

  • Use Reels mic to record commentary or a voiceover clip
  • Capture ambient sound during filming
  • Consider an authentic soundtrack that fits the theme

Applying Effects, Stickers and Text

One of the best parts about TikTok Reels is all the fun interactive elements you can add to truly make your content pop. Let’s explore them:

Effects Specifically for Reels

  • AR Lenses – Augmented reality filters overlayed on face/scene
  • Green Screen – Replace background behind a subject
  • Timer & Countdowns – Cut between clips or transition on beat
  • Pixelation & Color Shifts – Apply graphic effects

Stickers, GIFs & Text Overlays

  • Drag & drop quirky graphics anywhere
  • Insert text boxes with captions/commentary
  • Enhance brand identity using logos/icons

Feel free to stack multiple effects and stickers for a heightened, engaging look. But use them intentionally instead of going overboard.

Editing Your Reel Video Content

With all your raw clips and elements ready, it’s time for the fun part – editing! Compiling and refining your content into a sleek 15-30 second Reel.

Here are some editing tips:

  • Rearrange clips and trim down to highlight best parts
  • Adjust speed/duration of clips
  • Add transitions between clips
  • Include mix of closeups, wides, motion, angles
  • Preview end result before posting

Optimizing Your Reels for Maximum Views

You put time and effort into crafting an engaging TikTok Reels. Now let’s ensure you maximize viewership and get content in front of targeted audiences.

Choosing Hashtags and Captions

Hashtags and captions present prime opportunities to expand your reach and set your TikTok Reels apart.


  • Include mix of popular and niche tags
  • Leverage “challenges” and trending hashtags
  • Position highly searched tags first
  • Use relevant niche tags to reach specialized communities
  • Create your own branded hashtag!


  • Ask a question to spark conversation
  • Share an interesting factoid or story
  • Elicit an emotional response
  • Inspire viewers to create their own Reels
  • Add value and purpose beyond just entertainment

Cross-Promoting on Other Platforms

Don’t just rely on TikTok views! Re-purpose Reels to expand reach:

  • Re-post Reel previews on Instagram and Facebook
  • Upload longer cuts to YouTube Shorts
  • Embed on blogs and websites

Interacting with Viewers to Boost Engagement

Views are great, but prioritizing engagement creates loyal followers. Here are tips:

Replying to Comments

  • Thank followers for positive feedback
  • Answer questions thoroughly
  • Ask for suggestions on future content

Using Stitches and Duets

  • “Stitch” your Reel clip reacting to viewer Reels
  • “Duet” collaborations with fellow creators
  • Sparks community and encourages participation

The more you interact 1-on-1, the stronger your connection with viewers. Branded Reels stickers and hashtags also remind audiences to follow, like and share with friends for extended exposure.

Analyzing Reels Performance and Results

You won’t know what content resonates best with your audience unless you dig into metrics. Let’s explore essential Reels analytics to guide your game plan:

Key Metrics to Track

Hard Numbers

  • Total Loop Views
  • New Followers/Follower Growth
  • Total Likes, Comments, Shares
  • Traffic to Linked Websites

Engagement Rates

  • View Completion %
  • Like, Comment and Share Rates
  • Saves to Favorites Rate
  • Duet and Stitch Rate

Insights to Guide Your TikTok Reels Strategy

Analytics reveal what your audience responds to best. Use these learnings to shape content:

🔎 See which effects, songs and filters generate most engagement – Then reuse those elements often.

🔎 Determine ideal Reel length – Find the sweet spot of 15, 20 or 30 seconds that retains viewers.

🔎 Identify top-performing content styles and topics – Make more of what already works.

🔎 Optimize captions and hashtags – Refine tag strategy to reach more niche users that actively engage.

🔎 Understand when your followers are most active – Post more consistently during peak hours.

Conclusion: How to Make a Reel on TikTok

That concludes our complete guide on how to make a Reel on TikTok to boost your profile! The key is spending time crafting entertaining Reels leveraging interactive creative tools. But even more importantly – ensure you analyze performance and listen to your audience to continually refine and improve.

The TikTok algorithm favors accounts who consistently post popular Reels. So put these tips into action to take advantage of this pivotal moment!


What app do I need to make TikTok Reels?

You can create Reels directly within the TikTok app. Simply open the app, go to the capture screen to record a new video, then select the Reels tool at the bottom to access the editor. No additional apps required!

Do Reels disappear after 24 hours?

No, unlike Instagram Stories or Snapchat posts, TikTok Reels do not disappear after 24 hours. They will remain visible on your profile unless you actively delete them.

Can I make a Reel longer than 30 seconds?

Unfortunately at this time, TikTok Reels are limited to a length between 15-30 seconds. You cannot extend beyond 30 seconds. Create a full-length video for longer content.

How do I add music to my Reel?

Within the Reels editor, tap the “Sounds” icon at the top. Browse TikTok’s catalog of songs and sounds. You can search for specific tracks, view trending options, and access your liked music. Simply click a song to add it!

Can I download my published Reels?

Yes! Open your profile, tap on your Reel, then hit the share icon. Select “Save video” and it will save to your camera roll so you can re-use the content.

I shared a Reel but it has low views – how can I boost discoverability?

Ensure you use at least 5 relevant hashtags so it surfaces in those tag searches. Mention larger accounts in captions to hopefully get noticed. Share the Reel link on other social profiles driving external traffic. Promote it to your own followers by uploading a small teaser clip to your profile’s main feed.

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