5 Instagram Reels Ideas to Try This Summer

Instagram is at it again.

After more than ten years as the most popular photo-sharing app on the planet, Instagram is shifting its focus from square pictures and pivoting to video, says head of Instagram, Adam Mosseri.

“We’re no longer a photo-sharing app,” he said in a video clip posted to his social media pages in early July 2021. “People are looking to Instagram to be entertained. We have to embrace that.”

He went on to explain that, over the next six months, the app will start experimenting with different types of video — “full screen, immersive, entertaining, mobile-first video” — and pointed out TikTok and YouTube as the competition.

So, what does this all mean for you?

As a small business owner, don’t worry — you don’t have to revamp your entire social media strategy to adjust to this change. (Phew!)

What you do have to do is start trying out new types of posts from time to time. And an easy way to wade into the “video” waters is through Instagram Reels — especially during the summer season.

Summer is the perfect time to get your creative juices flowing, capture some inspiring footage, and share some engaging content to mix up your Instagram feed.

So, are you ready to give it a try? We’ve rounded up five Reel ideas that are perfect for your summer feed. Plus, we share our tips on how to execute them perfectly!

Here are your 5 Instagram Reels Ideas to Try This Summer


1. A Vacation Montage

No matter where you travel, people love to see vacation footage, so record some short (we’re talking 2- or 3-second) video clips over the course of your trip. Then, when you return home, piece them together with some trending audio. (Just search on Instagram to find great music clips that are perfect for the vacation theme.)

Need some inspiration? Head over to my IG and check out the one I posted from my recent beach vacay!

2. A Day in the Life
You may not think so, but your followers are very interested in your day-to-day life, so take the time to share it!

Capture a few video clips or photos over the course of your day (from brewing your morning coffee to mid-day meetings to that relaxing sunset) and share them as a Reel. Just make sure to show your face and add some trending audio.

3. A Trending Dance or a Lip-Sync
I get it — tapping into your silly side might not be for everyone, but these types of Reels are great for engagement.

Do a little searching around on Reels to see if you can find a lip-sync or dance trend that feels comfortable and relevant to your audience and give it a go! You can always bring a friend, spouse, co-worker — even your kids — in to do it with you if you don’t want to do it alone.

(I’ve been trying to step outside my comfort zone and do these types of Reels regularly, so check out my IG page for a few ideas.)

4. A Behind-the-Scenes Look at Your Service/Product
The Instagram audience loves a good timelapse video, so if you sell a product, record yourself unboxing an item or creating your product from start to finish. Some great examples of this are people frosting a cake, piecing together a floral arrangement, or building a piece of handmade furniture from scratch.

Service providers can take advantage of this feature, too, by showing a before-and-after or a timelapse video of one of their projects to highlight their attention to detail and execution, from start to finish.

5. A Throwback Project
I often hear from clients that creating a Reel feels like too much work, but it doesn’t have to be!

You can easily repurpose existing content to create something new. One of my favorite ways to use the feature is by simply combining photos from a past project or gallery and sharing it as a slideshow. Easy, engaging, and very effective!


Reels are meant to be short (in fact, the shorter the better), so don’t overthink it.

Take some time to research how they’re made (I have some quick how-to videos on my IG account), try something that feels authentic to you and your business, and just have fun with it!

At Brand Social Marketing, we’re upgrading our packages to cover more Reels content for our clients and we’d love to help you in any way we can!

To find out more about what we do and how we can help you stay on top of all the latest social media trends, reach out to us any time.