Instagram for Shiatsu Practitioners


October 23rd, 2017 Facebook Twitter LinkedIn Blog


Love it or loathe it, social media is a very important part of today’s business. It can be time-consuming but the rewards can be enormous. I hope the following will give you an insight into Instagram and also give you a few helpful tips on how to save a bit of time and energy.

Samantha Haywood, Director, Shiatsu Health Point

Why have an Instagram Presence

Instagram is primarily a photo sharing website, however, it is growing in popularity daily and becoming much more which makes it an excellent business marketing tool. The site allows you to do so much more now than just post photos and is beneficial to all Shiatsu practitioners as it can gain you:

  • Brand Awareness – for your business and for Shiatsu
  • Sales Opportunities – gain more clients
  • Educate people about Shiatsu
  • Increased Exposure
  • Free advertising – costs you time but rewards can be enormous

Instagram is one of the fastest growing social networks out there – and with good reason! Businesses and individuals alike love connecting with each other by sharing inspiring images and videos.

50% of Instagram users follow a business, and 60% actually use Instagram to learn about a product or service. There are currently over 700 million Instagram users and that is estimated to reach 1 billion by the end of 2017. How’s that for a potential audience for your business!

Creating an Instagram Page

Visit www.instagram.com.  You then have two choices.  If you have a Facebook page you can then log in via your Facebook page as the two will link together, or if you do not have a Facebook page you can choose to ‘Sign Up’.

If you have a Facebook page:

  • Click on ‘Log In with Facebook’
  • Instagram should automatically allocate you a username but you can change that if you wish. It may be better to use your business name. The username cannot have spaces. Instagram will automatically use your name as your ID on Instagram but you can access your settings and change this to your business name if you wish.
  • Enter a password
  • If you have a smart phone then now is a good time to download the app to your phone so you can easily keep updated and post easily to your Instagram.
  • Upload a profile picture. The picture is round (Instagram will show you an example) so bear this in mind when you are uploading your photo.
  • Complete your profile giving information about yourself and your Shiatsu practice.

If you do not have a Facebook page

Click on ‘Sign Up’ and just follow the instructions and complete each box to enter your details (see above).

It is best to have a Facebook page as the two pages can link saving you work and time.  There is a setting in Facebook for you to automatically have your posts in Facebook upload to Instagram.

Utilise all Features of Instagram

Don’t leave your bio blank, don’t turn off any features such as GeoMap. These things may seem inconsequential but remember that Instagram is a website and you want to make the most of it so utilise everything it has to offer.

What Should I Post?

Make sure your posts are interesting, relevant, and accurate.

Photos

Instragram’s main expectation is that you upload photos.  A picture tells a thousand words of course!  This is perfect for Shiatsu as you can  upload photos of:

  • Shiatsu treatments
  • Yourself
  • Japanese themes
  • Ying & Yang Symbols
  • Meridians
  • People in pain
  • Pictures of yourself at health exhibitions
  • Your clinic room
  • Healthy food
  • Details of your promotions and special offers
  • Tips
  • Humour

Add captions and comments to your photos to gain interest, interaction, and followers.

While your posts should be effective, 80% of your posts should add  value, not promotion. The most compelling brands on Instagram      content that speaks to their target audience’s interests, challenges, and experiences instead of simply selling to them.

You need to keep your posts professional as this is your business, however, there is a lot of value in humanising your business making it feel accessible and real to your social media following. Feature yourself / your clinic in your posts by sharing photos from your events and  promotions, or celebrating milestones e.g. the 5th anniversary of your clinic opening. Showing your face so people can see who will be treating them so they can relate to you can make the public feel safer.

Post Teasers

If you have a certain type of post that is popular with your followers then give them a little taster before you hit them with the main news to drum up intrigue and attention. For example, if you are launching a new promotion then post that you have exciting news about a new promotion but don’t give the details straight away.  Tease people for a week before unveiling the deal.

Get noticed by Instagram

This is easier said than done but is possible if you post regularly and post content that is interesting, relevant and fresh which gains you a lot of followers who want to interact with you. Instagram may then add your account to their ‘explore’ page or ‘suggested users’ list. That kind of attention can gain you thousands of new followers!  Believe! – you are an expert in Shiatsu and you have the knowledge and information.

Spend 10 minutes looking at what others post.  What do you like? What grabs your attention? What would your audience like to see?

Follow / Followers

Followers

You want as many people as possible to follow you so post regularly and post content that is interesting and fresh.

A tip for getting more people to follow you is to ask questions after your posts such as:

  • What do you think?
  • Does this happen to anyone else?
  • What should I do?

Not only will this increase your number of views and likes, but it will also boost the quality of your content by encouraging meaningful      discussion and interaction.

A good way to get people to follow you is to offer them something for free or by way of a competition.  If you are running any special offers or promotions then a condition could be that they follow you on Instagram – they will need an Instagram account of course.

Follow

Follow people and businesses that are of interest to you and your  business. Examples:

  • Other Shiatsu practitioners
  • Shiatsu Health Point!
  • Other Shiatsu organisations and schools
  • Other complementary health practitioners and organisations
  • Regulators e.g. CNHC and GRCCT
  • Your local health clubs
  • Your local media
  • Your clients

Upload Posts Straight from your Phone

A quick and easy way to upload to Instagram is from your smart phone.  These day’s smart phones have so many ways to upload to social media so easily – videos, photos etc.

Tip – Use Aeroplane Mode

If you create a post whilst using the Instagram app in aeroplane mode this will disconnect your phone from the web so you will be able to  upload images to Instagram without actually posting them live. This will enable you to edit, crop, filter and tag your post before posting so you can get it perfect.

Hashtags

Using the # symbol will help your posts stand out but it can take a bit of practice getting used to using them. The general rule of thumb is:

  • One popular hashtag to draw traffic
  • One descriptive hashtag to set the tone of your post
  • One unique hashtag to stand out from the crowd

For example:

  • #Shiatsu aids sleep
  • #Shiatsuaidssleep
  • #Shiatsugotmeagoodnightssleep

Photos

Photos should always be of a very high quality as you want to look professional at all times.

Tip 1

When taking photos on your smart phone use the rear-facing camera instead of the front-facing camera as this provides photos in a much higher definition.

Tip 2

If you really want to post a photo that is not the best quality then convert it to black and white as this will hide a lot and make the photo look a lot better.

Tip 3

Maintain your professional image at all times. Everyone has been tagged into an embarrassing photo at some point – usually by a friend.  Instagram has a variety of options for adding, editing and removing tags so make use of them if you feel that the integrity of your blog or business has been compromised.  Remember that this is your Shiatsu business page, not your personal page.

Tip 4

If your photos have people smiling then this is more inviting and gives you a positive image.

Tip 5

Take advantage of free software to gain professional photos, edit your photos, and be creative with your photos.

www.picmonkey.com is a fabulous software which has a free trial version. It allows you to edit photos, put captions on photos, create post-it notes plus more.  Very quick and easy to use.

Websites for royalty free photos ….

 

Clients of Shiatsu Health Point can access the full blog, plus more, in the client area at www.shiatsuhealthpoint.co.uk. Further topics covered in the document:

  • Videos
  • Create events
  • Responding to comments
  • Instagram and your website
  • Why Instagram for my Business?
  • Instagram Tips and Tricks
  • Do’s and Dont’s of Instagram
  • Where can you find further information?

Do you have any tips for using Instagram?  We’d love to hear them.

 

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