Instagram’s expanding its test of song lyrics in Reels to more regions, providing another music engagement option in the app.
As you can see in this example, with the music + lyrics option, you can display the lyrics to your song of choice on-screen, in variable fonts, which will add another element to your Reel.
It also makes it a little easier to find the section of the song you’re looking to use, with the lyrics appearing on screen as you scroll through the track.
Instagram’s been testing the Reels lyrics option in selected regions over the past few months, which is an expansion of its option to lyrics in Stories, which has been available since 2019.
It’s also the latest in IG’s broadening music focus, in alignment with usage trends. Instagram’s also added the capacity to include songs in static image and carousel posts, as well as recommendations of tracks to use with your Reels content, along with music in Notes, music sharing in DMs, “Dancify” for Reels, and more.
Really, Instagram’s chasing TikTok on this front, with the short-form video app now a key platform for music promotion, influencing how artists and record labels even create tracks in order to maximize their success. A viral TikTok hit can launch your career, and within the broader shift towards using social media apps for entertainment over interaction, it’s fast becoming an essential pathway for musicians to promote their work.
Instagram, of course, wants to facilitate the same, partly as a hedge, in case TikTok gets banned in the US (i.e. Instagram can replace all of its functionality straight away), and partly as a means to stay in touch with the latest trends, which TikTok is much better at aligning with.
Meta lost its cool factor years ago, but through replication, it’s essentially outsourcing its development on this front, enabling it to maintain relevance and value, without needing any cultural nous of its own.
Lyrics in Reels is a lesser element in this respect, but it’s another way to link into these usage shifts.