Not all Instagram content is created equal. In this three-part series, we'll help you ensure that your hard work is reaching the audience you want.
Raise your hand if this sounds familiar: You’re working hard to attract new clients to your salon, so you’ve begun to post dramatic before-and-afters on your Instagram page to demonstrate your talent. Your latest post is of a new client who had platinum dreams, but had been box-dying her hair at home for years. You spent hours correcting her color and got her to her goal hue, and you’re (rightfully) thrilled! Your post gets 125 likes. Not bad, perhaps—but your puppy post a few days ago got 302 likes. What gives?
Well, there are several things at play here. First, puppies are cute. But more than that, you need to examine your page. Are your followers mostly friends and family? Are your posts geared to appeal to clients? Are you hashtagging correctly to make sure potential new guests see your work? To ensure your content is reaching the audience you want to attract—not just the audience you have—you have to manage the photo, the post and tagging.
Post photos that show the client’s face. Photos of the backs of heads may appeal to you and other hairstylists, but they don’t resonate with potential clients (with one exception: updos). Clients want to picture what they’d look like with a certain haircut or color. Additionally, according to Iconosquare, an Instagram analytics and management website, photos with faces typically receive 38 percent more likes. And as we all know, more likes equals more reach equals more opportunities to attract new people.
What you write in your post matters. Let’s return to the example above. If your goal is attracting new business, you’ll want to appeal to the people who will be sitting in your chair: clients. First off, don’t bash the “before” pic. Shaming clients’ hair is not a sound business strategy. Second, don’t go into the nitty-gritty about the process—clients don’t know what going from a Level 3 to a Level 9 means, nor do they care. Instead, share how you can make your potential clients’ blonde dreams come true this summer, mention that spaces are filling up fast, talk about special offers, etc. Give your followers reason to book with you—great hair, great service and a great experience.
Tag and you’re it. A hashtag is essentially a search engine, and you get 30 chances to come up in a query. To show up in potential clients’ searches, hashtag your area (for example: #losangeleshairstylist, #losangeleshair, #lahair, #losangelessalon). Additionally, you and your salon should have a unique hashtag, and, again using the above example, the post could include hashtags about the color (#blonde, #blondehair), the transformation (#colorcorrection, #hairtransformation), the length (#longhair, #hairgoals) and the style (#wavyhair, #beachwaves). Side note: Try to include hashtags in the comments, not in the post itself.
Location tagging will further help drive engagement. People use location tags as a way to search for local businesses. In addition to tagging your salon, consider tagging your salon’s city, or even the hot new restaurant down the street. When people tap on a specific location, all images associated with that location come up—including yours. Who knows, maybe a few people will want their hair done before they go out to eat!
Check back to read our next installment on how to be seen and potentially be reposted by a manufacturer.
This story first appeared in the April issue of Beauty Launchpad magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.
[Image: Instagram; Unsplash]