18 Must-Try Ideas for Instagram Reel Hooks [2024]

a guy filming an instagram reel

Undeniably, Instagram Reels are a great type of content or engagement strategies to connect with your audience.

But since the audience’s attention span decreases year by year, you need a way to get them to watch your Reels.

A way to hook them, if you will. Well, there is a way, called Instagram Reel hooks.

Want to know what they’re all about and how to use them?

We’re here for you! In this guide, we’ll share the following:

  • What an Instagram Reel hook is
  • Benefits of Instagram Reel hooks
  • Inspiration from 18 Instagram Reel hooks

And as a bonus, you’ll learn ways to boost your Instagram Reels’ appeal and performance.

Let’s start and see if we can get folk hooked!

What is an Instagram Reel Hook?

An Instagram Reel hook is a creative way to attract the audience’s attention, pique their curiosity, and make them more willing to engage with your short video.

Hooks have a scroll-stopping effect on users and prevent them from skipping over your Reel to watch another cute dog video.

Instagram Reel hooks are vital elements of a successful video marketing strategy on social media.

The hooks may be anything that catches the user’s attention immediately, from a cool graphic and Instagram captions to a voice-over or a trending sound.

An even more straightforward way to grab the audience's attention is to ask them an open question in the first few seconds.

The platform’s algorithm favors Instagram Reels since they have a significantly higher reach than regular posts.

By using hooks in Instagram Reels, you ensure the high reach of your content and higher engagement rates.

And what’s more important than users who genuinely interact with your content? Nothing, that’s what 😎

Why You Need Instagram Reel Hooks

Before jumping into the benefits of hooks, let’s explain why Reels are the go-to social media marketing content for small businesses and e-commerce stores.

It has to do with the platform’s algorithm.

So, how does the Instagram Reel algorithm work?

Reels are displayed on the audience's main feed and in two other places:

  • Reels tab: This looks like a version of the TikTok For You page (FYP). You can find the Reels icon at the bottom of the Instagram home page.
  • Explore tab: Alongside other Instagram posts and stories, Reels are featured on the Explore page. 

As you can imagine, Instagram Reels get more reach than traditional posts or Instagram stories and are similar to TikTok videos.

While Reels are promoted more on Instagram, there is still one issue… how to get users to watch the content?

This is possible with Instagram Reel hooks.

Hooks encourage audiences to spend more time watching your Reels.

A survey conducted by Microsoft discovered that users' attention spans are decreasing. In 2000, the average human attention span was 12 seconds, while in 2013, it was only 8 seconds. 

This means you only have those precious 8 seconds to grab attention, and that’s what a hook does.

Furthermore, engagement rates are an essential metric many marketers or brand owners want to increase. 

An interesting survey featured on Facebook Insights indicates that people spend, on average, 1.7 seconds on a piece of content on mobile and 2.5 seconds when viewing it on desktop computers.

You have more or less 3 seconds to attract users to your video content or video ad. 

Based on these statistics, hooks are more critical than ever. A great title, creative graphics, or user-generated content (UGC) can sink the hook into your audience and engage them with your campaign.

Now, let’s see some Instagram Reel ideas and hooks that will benefit your digital marketing strategy on the social media platform.

18 Instagram Reel Hook Ideas

The time to grab users’ attention has finally come. 

A strong hook will ensure more engagement and a higher watch time for your video.

Sometimes, finding trending content ideas is challenging, so we’ve made this list to help hook your audience effectively.

Without further ado, let’s get into them!

Idea #1: “Watch until the end!”

This sentence is a great way to encourage users to watch longer.

With it, you get the audience excited and build up anticipation.

It’s an excellent idea for contest announcements because you can wait until the end of the video to disclose the participation requirements.

Idea #2: “Quick hack”

This phrase makes users willing to watch your Instagram Reel to gain the knowledge you will share with them.

Educational content types attract people who want to solve a problem or try to identify more efficient ways to complete a task.

Idea #3: “How I went from…to…”

People love stories, especially if these stories relate to them or inspire them.

Sharing a real story highlighting how you accomplished a goal provides value and inspiration to users. 

Users will also be curious to hear the details of the whole story.

You can use a call-to-action (CTA) to increase engagement by asking… Do you have a similar story? Share it in the comments. 

Idea #4: “This one is for…”

Give your audience a name if you’re looking for ways to make your content more personal.

That way, users feel like they belong to a community. It’s also a funny sentence to start your video content using a phrase like “This one is for Michael.” 

Every Michael who’s watching your Reel will laugh instantly and all the non-Michaels will be intrigued.

Idea #5: “Try this new…”

Powerful words are super effective because they’re persuasive and create an emotional response.

Those words can be:

  • New
  • Free 
  • Now
  • Limited

Starting with a sentence like “Try this new…” and then describing a product or service intrigues users to learn more about it.

Idea #6: “Don’t start your day without…”

This is an excellent line since it allows brands to showcase a product or service that solves a user's problem.

Additionally, it poses the question to the user — what is it that they can't start their day without? 

Such queries attract users to follow your content until they get a specific answer or solution.

Idea #7: “You need this.”

The main idea this phrase taps into is the fear of missing out (FOMO).

Essentially, it creates the feeling that we don't have valuable things that others have.

As a result, this motivates us to find out what we lack to fill this supposed need.

Idea #8: “X things you can do right now.”

This creates a sense of urgency and motivates people to take action. 

Share a list of things your followers can do immediately, such as DIY projects or tips on improving their lives. 

You can also encourage viewers to take part in a challenge or an activity.

Idea #9: “Quick reminder.”

You can remind viewers of something essential and share inspiring or motivational quotes. 

That way, you create a positive and uplifting atmosphere while reminding users of something worthwhile.

Idea #10: “Stop using…”

This is a great way to get your viewers’ attention and make them think.

Share some valuable tips on how to stop using something, such as unhealthy habits or bad products.

This is a great way to encourage your viewers to change their lives.

Idea #11: “Did you know…”

A great hook for an Instagram Reel is sharing interesting facts or figures about a topic. 

This educates your viewers, helps them learn something new, and grabs their attention.

Many users want to educate themselves before purchasing something.

Idea #12: “Stop scrolling!”

Sometimes, the best way to get what you want is to be honest and direct. 

Telling the audience to stop scrolling makes users curious about your content. What could be so important that they must stop what they’re doing?

In addition, phrases like this work as a compelling call to action.

Idea #13: “Save this video!”

Statements like this showcase the importance of the video since you suggest viewers should save this content and watch it later. 

Just make sure that you justify the hook — your Reel should be interesting, useful, or thought-provoking.

Idea #14: “This will change your life.”

This is a great way to grab viewers’ attention and encourage them to take action. 

Share inspiring stories or tips to help your viewers improve their lives.

By motivating and inspiring your viewers to make positive changes, you build stronger relationships with them.

Idea #15: “This will blow your mind.”

Everyone wants to learn something new that’ll significantly impact their lives.

So, this hook grabs the attention of users who want to satisfy their curiosity and learn a new tip.

Idea #16: “Watch this tutorial on…”

Tutorials and how-to videos are favored by users since that type of content provides them with solutions and showcases the usage of tools or products.

This hook satisfies the users’ thirst for knowledge and their curiosity.

Idea #17: “We need to talk about…”

With this phrase, you create an air of seriousness around your content that provokes users to discover what it's about. 

It also creates a sense of belonging, as users feel part of a community where they can learn interesting and helpful information.

In addition, it encourages users to interact and share their opinion on the content topic.

Idea #18: “We bet you didn’t know this!”

By making a bet with users, your content becomes more interactive. 

The assumption that you know something the audience doesn't will pique their curiosity and motivate them to watch your content.

Trending ideas to hook users on Instagram Reels come and go, but some key elements ensure a hook is good enough to draw the audience’s attention.

What Makes a Great Instagram Hook?

Creating a successful hook on Instagram is challenging if you don’t know the basics.

So, what are the vital elements of Instagram hooks?

A great hook is about making the best first impression on users, and there are many ways to create an eye-catching intro. 

First, consider the goal of the content and align that goal with a clear proposition or statement. 

So if your Instagram Reel aims for brand awareness, create the appropriate message. 

Furthermore, to attract more users, start by creating a fantastic cover. The cover is the first thing they’ll see, so it has to be attention-grabbing.

Then, create a clear statement or a question in the cover's title that intrigues users to watch the video. A surprising or controversial statement makes for a catchy headline. 

Second, remember to form an emotional connection with the audience. You can trigger different emotions based on your target audience and goals.

For example, a meme will attract users looking for entertainment, while a statistic from a survey will fascinate users interested in educational information. 

Both types of intros are fantastic, but they create different user expectations.

Third, well-produced graphics and transitions will keep users focused on your content. Create something that they don’t expect and surprise them. 

Colors and music can also help to create a unique vibe that’ll make users stop scrolling. 

Fourth, use a call to action (CTA) right at the beginning of your content. Make sure the CTA directs the audience to keep watching or engage in comments.

For instance, an announcement of a contest that’ll be fully disclosed later in the video is a powerful hook for users. 

Since you now know the elements of a successful Instagram Reel hook, it’s time to supercharge its performance.

How to Further Boost the Appeal of Your Instagram Reel Hooks

While the Instagram algorithm promotes Reels in several ways, you should optimize your content using best practices to ensure high performance.

What do we mean by best practices?

Instagram’s Creators account has posted a carousel post confirming the factors for a successful Reel.

Image Source: Instagram

Some of the most valuable takeaways to boost your Instagram Reel hooks’ performance based on this post are:

  • Create quality content: Add value to users through your content, create a funny piece, or entertain them. 
  • Feature people in your Reels: One way to intrigue users is by sharing UGC videos. Also, collaborating with well-known influencers will grab audiences' attention. If you’re looking for the best influencers, take a sneak peek at Insense. With more than 35,000 influencers, identifying incredible collaborators is easier than ever. 
  • Use hashtags: Hashtags are a potent tool that helps your content get discovered by users. You can boost engagement or encourage users to participate in your campaign through hashtags. 
  • Add trendy music: This way, you instantly grab the user’s attention. Trending sounds will help your Reel get more eyeballs on it.
  • Jump into trends: Occasionally, some trends go viral on social media. So, identify a trend and get into it immediately to create appealing content.

The best thing is that it’s all about creativity and giving reasons to users to watch your content at first sight. 

And with all that being said, we’ve reached our guide's end.


Crafting compelling Instagram Reel hooks is an art. It requires creativity, an understanding of your audience, and a willingness to experiment.

Remember, the goal is not just to grab attention, but to engage your viewers. Make them curious, make them laugh, make them think.

With these 18 ideas and best practices, you're well on your way to creating Instagram Reel hooks that truly resonate.

Now Over to You

Now you’ve got all you need to nail Instagram Reels!

You’ve learned that hooks are the way to capture attention, preventing users from scrolling away from your content.

While hooks are essential, they must be followed by great content, and the way to get great content is to work with great influencers.

Ready to scale your business on social media?

Feel free to book a demo with Insense, and we’ll guide you to find awesome influencers to carry out your campaigns.

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Kaylan Cavalcante

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