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We get it, TikTok & Instagram Reels can be confusing. Especially when people start to talk about “Trending Audio.” There are enough confusing elements to these platforms to make you want to scream! Trending audio (or sometimes referred to as trending songs or trending sounds) refers to audio gaining popularity in Reels/TikTok inclusion.

We’ve put together a short guide on how to use these trending audio pieces so you can add it to your social strategy mix!

1. Save the tending audio that you want to use from the links we sent. (you can see it’s trending from the arrow pointing upward with the number of reels that have used that audio).

If you want audio from a reel that you see on Instagram, click the square in the bottom right corner of the reel (it will be a photo of the account that created the audio). Click “save audio.

2. Once you have your audio saved, go to your Instagram home page (bottom left house icon). Click the plus icon in the top right corner and select reels on the dropdown.

3. Click on the music icon on the middle left navigation. It will pull up your saved audio and other suggested audio. You can view the audio you just saved right there at the top or click on the “saved” button on the top left to sort through all of your saved audio.

4. Once you add the audio, it will show you the length of video at the top of the screen that you need to include in order to use the audio.

5. In the bottom left corner, pull up the photos and videos on your device. Find and select a file. Edit that to be however long you would like and then click “add” at the top right corner. Continue this process until you have reached the length of time needed for the audio file. (If you wish to record something instead of add from your camera,, you can select the center button at the bottom to do that.) You will see a progress bar that is a pink and orange gradient at the top of your screen showing you how much more photo or video content you need to add in order to complete your reel.

6. To see the progress you’ve made so far as you begin adding photos or video, click on the audio file on the middle left navigation.

(If you wish to use effects in the middle navigation or the icon on the bottom center, do that at this step)

7. Click “next” on the bottom right.

8. In the bottom left corner, you can select “edit” if you wish to shuffle around your clips or change the length. At the top of your screen, you will see icons that you can use to edit or add stickers, text, filters, other audio, etc. to your reel. You can also save your reel at this point by clicking the down arrow icon to the far left of those icon. Click “next” to proceed.

9. If you add text at this stage, you will see it at the bottom. Click on that text to edit where you want it to show up within the reel. Click “done.”

10. You have created your reel! Click on your reel at the top to select a cover photo from the video sequence, which will be displayed on your feed and reels page. Keep in mind it will show on your Instagram feed page as a square image so have your cover image be in the safe size, which is the center of your cover photo. Now create a caption. If you click share here, you can decide if you want this to be shown on your feed and reels page or just your reels page.

11. If you wish to not share at this time, you can click save draft for later. *Please note that if you switch accounts (between your personal and professional page, etc.), this will delete your saved draft! We would recommend clicking the back arrow at the top left corner and saving your reel to your device just to be sure it doesn’t get deleted. That icon for saving a draft is on the far left  with a down arrow and a line horizontal under it. This will save to your device’s photo and video library.

Congratulations! You have published a reel! Be sure to engage with your audience as they begin to like and comment. Share your reel to Instagram stories for more views! Encourage your audience to tap on the reel to view the whole thing/engage by liking, commenting or saving.