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3 Tips To Take Your Instagram To The Next Level  image

In today’s digital world, people are looking for a way to connect with brands on a deeper level, far beyond a traditional website. As an independent salon owner, social media can be utilized to create a secondary face of your salon. Instagram especially is a platform on which you have the opportunity to create a visual story of your brand and provide valuable messaging to your clients and followers.

Let’s talk about that for a moment. How well have you been keeping up with posting content, tagging, hashtagging, and everything in between? “Social media, especially Instagram, has been a huge tool in building my business,” shares Morgan Cameron, owner of Enlightened Beauty in Sacramento, California (@enlightenedbeauty). “If you’re trying to build your business using this tool, ask yourself, ‘What do you think of when you look at your Instagram feed?’ Look at the colors, the pictures, the messages you want to convey and portray about your business. Even when you’re posting before and after photos, you want everything to convey a specific and whole message about who you are and what your business is. Something else to keep at the top of your priorities is to make sure you’re using the same color palette throughout and always, ALWAYS, remember to hashtag EVERYTHING!”

Get more advice from Morgan Cameron in this 2018 Faces of Sola (FOS) Career Advice blog post, HERE.

Morgan just mentioned something quite imperative when it comes to a beauty professionals Instagram account—before and after photos. Posting these transformation gives potential clients and existing clients a peek at what you’re able to produce and create for each person who walks into your studio. You hear it all the time—take off the cape, find a neutral wall and set up a ring light. (talk to your Sola manager about setting up the perfect Instagram wall in your Sola location!)

For another FOS Ashley Lewis, owner of Nest Hair Studio in Richmond, VA (@the_blondologist) she wanted to step up her paint game with the wall color inside her studio. It wasn’t just about keeping it neutral; it was more about being strategic and how it was going to benefit her clients and her presence on social media. We’ll let her explain:

“The walls in Nest have been painted a color called Bridal Rose. It is the softest blush color.  We did some research on what the perfect hue would be to complement any hair and skin color, and this is the color we found. It is the most beautiful, softest blush color we’ve ever seen! We also have one of our walls painted a high-reflective white that we use for all our before and after photos. We do not have any windows in our studio so this wall gives us some nice reflection and it is a nice, clean slate for photography.”

You can check out some of Ashley’s before and after work HERE in this

Recreate This Look: That Blonde Life how-to.

If you have big social media dreams of having thousands upon thousands of followers, remember that social media is not about collecting followers. Engagement and the quality of your followers is much more important than the number of people following your account. Remember to create conversation and provide value to those who choose to follow your brand. More importantly, please do NOT purchase followers! “My build has been completely organic,” shares another one of our 2018 FOS, LaShonda Banks, from Tress Elite Salon in Atlanta (@tresselitesalon2). “All of my followers have chosen to follow me. Back in June/July of 2016, I had 200 or so followers and was able to grow it to 70K. Back when I had 200, I was complaining to my older sister how slow business was and was like, ‘I need to figure out how a 14-year-old has 5K follower?! What are they doing that I’m not doing?!’

“So I gathered up some of my very best work and videos. I took that content to some accounts/pages on social media that were a lot more popular than me and had them do promotions/posting for me on their accounts. From gossip blogs to entertainment sites, fitness and makeup bloggers—accounts that had the type of followers that I wanted following me, and people I wanted to attract as clients.

“I would send them direct messages and ask them if they would be interested in helping me promote my business through their social media pages, and if so, how much would something like that cost. And it worked! I would create or give them four videos and even create a special of some kind, like ‘50 percent off your first blowout when you come to the salon.’ If you followed my page and mentioned the ad, then you’d receive that discount. But what I knew was that these people were going to need more than just a blowout when they got to the salon! This got them into the salon and gave me the opportunity to give them a thorough consultation and to build on that ticket. It took me about 6-8 weeks to see it work and once I started this type of promotion, I posted it to my account on a more consistent daily basis.

“What stands out about my account is that I provide information. That kind of dawned on me that a lot of people were using and going to YouTube for information because I was getting a lot of questions and requests for help and info. By giving them the information they wanted, it showed followers that I am not only willing to share, but also a knowledgeable stylist who give them what they actually need. And because of all this, my income has GROWN! I get anywhere from 2-4 new clients every single day. Not per week, but every single day. I only work three days a week. I do maybe seven to eight clients a day, and I could work more if I wanted to, but I need balance. I’m in a position where I can call my own shots.”

Soon after we spoke with LaShonda about her social media strategy, her Instagram account was unfortunately hacked and she lost all 70K followers. It’s truly tragic, and quite a reality that it could happen to anyone. But the good news is, she’s on the road to rebuilding and is on the brink of reaching 30K.

The next time you sit down and map out your social media calendar and strategy for the month, think about these reminders and ask yourself, “Is there something I should be doing different moving forward?”