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Rising Social App BeReal is Gaining Momentum, with Downloads Up 315% This Year

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Rising Social App BeReal is Gaining Momentum, with Downloads Up 315% This Year


We need to talk about BeReal, the latest trending social app that’s quickly rising up the download charts – i.e. the latest functionality that’s set to be replicated by Instagram and/or Facebook any time soon.

BeReal, as the name suggests, is focused on real, authentic connection, an un-edited view on social sharing, designed to help people take a step away from the overly curated feeds of other apps.

As explained by BeReal:

“BeReal is the simplest photo sharing app to share once a day your real life in photo with friends. Every day at a different time, everyone captures a photo within 2 minutes. Capture and post in time to discover what your Friends are up to.”

How it works is that, once a day, users are prompted to share an image of what they’re up to, and they have 2 minutes to share their response. The app takes photos using the front and reverse cameras, so you see not only what the person is doing, but where they are as well, and the time limit restricts your capacity to stage and edit shots, keeping things, well, real.

It’s a simple process, and it’s clearly catching on, with downloads of the app increasing some 315% since the beginning of the year, according to Apptopia.

BeReal downloads

As you can see, BeReal’s momentum is increasing, and while we’re only talking about the low millions right now (BeReal has been installed 7.41 million times to date), that chart is on a sharp incline, which points to the desire for more honest, raw depictions of people’s real life experiences, away from the airbrushed, edited, background warped photos that have become the norm in many of the top apps.

According to additional data from data.ai (formerly App Annie), BeReal ranks 4th by downloads in the US, the UK and France for Q1 2022 to date, behind only Instagram, Snapchat and Pinterest. 

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BeReal skews heavily Gen Z in France, with over 80% of its iPhone user base aged 16-24 as of Feb 2022 and Gen Z 180% more likely to use the app. Headquartered in France, BeReal has gained traction with French users, making up 30% of its historical downloads. However, the app is catching on outside of its home market – Q1 2022 QoQ growth spurred by the US, Spain, France, UK, Denmark and Mexico.”

It could be the next big app trend, which, as noted, will no doubt see Meta eyeing its key features and considering how it can incorporate the same into its apps, with a specific focus on Instagram and younger users.

Because as we all know, Meta is very keen to win the hearts of the youth once again. Late last year, Meta CEO Mark Zuckerbeg explained that the company would be ‘re-tooling’ to ‘make young adults their north star, rather than optimizing for the larger number of older people’. This came after data showed that Facebook and Instagram usage was slowing, with younger users, in particular, preferring other apps.

Given Meta’s repeated attempts to blunt TikTok’s momentum, through varying forms of replication, you can likely expect it to be considering the same in this instance – though what usage threshold Meta requires before it starts paying attention to a rising app, we don’t know.

Seven and a half million downloads seems like a lot, and as BeReal’s momentum continues to rise, the likelihood of Meta cloning its core functions will also increase.



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Meta Shares New Reels Creation Tips, Based on Successful Creators

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Meta Updates Reels Monetization Options to Better Incentivize Creators

Looking to add Reels into your Facebook and Instagram marketing strategy for the upcoming holiday season?

Latching onto the broader short-video trend, Reels is now Meta’s fastest-growing content surface, and has quickly become a valuable means to help boost exposure and reach for many creators and brands.

If you can get it right.

Like all social media options, there is an opportunity for big exposure, but boring, overly promotional or highly scripted Reels generally don’t do as well, and it takes a level of creative nous and understanding to ensure that your Reels content resonates with your target user communities.

So how can you maximize your Reels approach?

This week, Meta has published a new set of Reels tips, based on advice from creators @coconutandbliss, @gourmetemperor, @Olinhli, and @BradBoy‘s, who have all generated significant results from their reels efforts.

Meta has summarized their key tips into a listing of 8 key points:

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Some of these notes are fairly generic, but they could help to give you some additional guidance for your Reels efforts.

Among the key pointers – summarizing your longer videos into shorter clips:

“We use reels as highlight clips of popular videos to promote our page and our content.”@Bradboy

This is a relatively low effort way to create Reels clips, and Meta has added new editing tools to Creator Studio for just this purpose. It could be an easy way to try out Reels, while also promoting your longer video assets.

“To earn love and support from the audience, each and every of my videos needs to bring in a story that is relatable. If they feel connected, they stick around.” – @Olinhli.

Understanding what works for your audience, and what they want to see from your business, is key to creating resonant content, and Reels could provide a new opportunity to establish stronger relationships with your audience through engaging, personal content.

Research your audience and their related interests, get a feel for how they use your products, then iterate on that.

“I pull out one or two seconds of each scene when I edit, and then I join them together. This eliminates repetitive or unnecessary shots.” – @gourmetemperor

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The rapid pace of Reels means that you need to lean into more snappy edits, and this tip could help to streamline your content flow, by eliminating unnecessary repetition.

It’s somewhat similar to Stephen King’s editing advice:

In the spring of my senior year at Lisbon High – 1966, this would have been – I got a scribbled comment that changed the way I rewrote my fiction once and forever. Jotted below the machine-generated signature of the editor was this mot: “Not bad, but PUFFY. You need to revise for length. Formula: 2nd Draft = 1st Draft – 10%. Good luck.”

Distilling your content down to its essence can make it more compelling, which is even more true in short-form video content.

Another key tip relates to consistency, with one creator noting that they post Reels around five times a week. You may not need, or want to post that much, but it could give you some idea of how often others are posting to help build an audience.

These are some handy notes, which could help you formulate your own Reels strategy – and with short-form video consumption continuing to rise, it’s worth considering, at the least, as part of your end of year push.

You can read Meta’s full Reels advice post here.



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