For those of you who are familiar with our Marketing Guide, you’ll know that we touched on Instagram in Part 2, however, we thought it was time to delve a little deeper into the platform. With over 1 billion users worldwide, Instagram can be a hugely effective method of promoting your aesthetic business, so here’s five of our top tips for getting the most out of it.
Know your audience
It’s vital to post content that actually appeals to the people who’ll see it, so ensure that you understand your audience. Think about your current patients as well as the types of patient you’d like to attract. What would they like to see? It’s also a good idea to look at what your competitors, and other people in the industry in general, are sharing. Which posts seem to gain the most traction? Before and after photos? Motivational quotes? Videos?
Instagram Insights are another great way to find out valuable information about your current audience. You can see which of your posts have had the most engagement, as well as demographics such as the age, sex and location of the users who are interacting with your content.
Once you’ve got a better idea of who your audience actually is, you can start to create more tailored content that will hopefully then receive more interaction from your followers.
Hashtags are a way to categorize your content so that more people can find it. There’s varying information on the best number of hashtags to include in a single post - some users believe that less is more, while others prefer to make use of the full 30 that are allowed by Instagram.
This is another area that you should spend some time researching. There are endless possibilities when it comes to hashtags, however, it’s important to remember that using broad hashtags, such as “#botox”, will likely result in your content being lost among the thousands of other posts using the same one. Instead, try to be more targeted; narrow down your hashtags to cover your particular services, niche and even location, such as “#botoxnurseliverpool”, while also using a few broader terms as well.
Creating a branded hashtag can be a great way to track your followers when they post about you - for example, if your patients ever post the results of a treatment, you could ask them to use your branded hashtag on their post. At Facethetics, we encourage delegates to tag their posts with “#facetheticstrained”. Every few weeks we then look through all of the posts tagged with our hashtag and share our favourites.
It can be tempting to just post self-promotional content on social media and not do much else, but remember, the clue is in the word “social”! You’ll get a much better reception from your followers if you actually take the time to engage with them. Ask questions in your caption to encourage your followers to comment on your posts and always make sure that you reply to all messages and comments. Instagram’s Stories feature allows you to create interactive posts, such as polls, questions and even quizzes, allowing for even more engagement with your followers.
Continuing on from our point about hashtags, it’s also a great idea to search through relevant hashtags to find other users’ posts and comment on those as well. Don’t just wait for people to come to your feed - join conversations on other pages and chances are, you’ll gain new followers in the process.
Post at the best time
It’s tempting to just post on Instagram whenever you remember to, however, you will see much better results if you stick to a specific posting schedule. Aim to post at the same time every day, if you can. Instagram itself doesn’t allow users to schedule posts, however there are now several third party scheduling tools available which allow you to create several posts and then specify exactly when you want them to be posted.
Instagram Insights can show you exactly when your followers are most often online. If you find that between 7pm and 9pm is the best time to post, aim to always publish your posts during this time window in order to maximise the opportunities for engagement.
Create eye catching visuals
Instagram is, first and foremost, a visual app, and it’s important to keep this in mind when creating your posts. Whether you share photos, quotes or even cartoons or memes, ensure that the images you post are high quality and eye catching.
You can also make your feed stand out even more by sticking to a particular theme. Simple ways to do this are to always use the same filter across all your images, adding the same sized border to every image or even using a particular colour scheme. By maintaining a theme, your Instagram feed will look more professional, as well as being more aesthetically pleasing.
Bonus tip - make use of ALL of Instagram’s different features
The Instagram algorithm currently makes it so that your posts are only ever shown to a certain percentage of your followers at any given time, however new research suggests that if Instagram “sees” that you’re using the various different features available, it will show your content to more people. Can’t hurt to give it a try! Make sure to utilise Instagram stories, IGTV, Insta Live and Highlights to ensure that you’re hitting every base.