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TikTok vs. Reels: Which one will get you the most views and revenue?

They appear the same at first.

But if you want to turn your videos into traffic and conversion machines, it pays to look a little closer at the differences between TikTok and Reels.

Tim Duncan’s Twitter thread walks you through four key differences between the two platforms.

Let’s unravel this spool…

1 – The algorithm: Both platforms optimize for watch time. However, it’s not the percentage of the video viewing that makes a difference, but the time.

With Instagram, it doesn’t matter how long your video is. TikTok, on the other hand, prefers longer content.

Instagram prefers videos that are 6–10 seconds long. TikTok likes them to be between 25 and 60 seconds long.

2 – The description: On TikTok, there’s an 80-character description limit. On Instagram? The limit is 2108.

Users will read your Reels description while reviewing the video several times, so the ideal Reels formula would be a 6-second video with a long, interesting description.

3 – Reach: TikTok happily sends traffic to any new user. But while you might post one video and get 4M views on TikTok, that doesn’t guarantee consistency or growth.

With Instagram, you need to earn your growth over time, which means you have to post frequently for months before things “click.”

From there you can snowball… and your reach becomes more stable.

4 – Monetization: Tim believes Instagram is better optimized for making money. You can build sales funnels through Stories, Highlights, etc.

However, gaining and building an audience on TikTok is much easier, and you can do it more quickly.

Long story short, while the two platforms are different, using one doesn’t exclude the other.

The best approach is to repurpose your content on both platforms and build on their strengths to grow your brand awareness. Good luck!