Instagram and Your Chiropractic Clinic

"What is Instagram?  Do I really need to be on another platform?"  

OR

"Oh, what is Instagram?  Is there really another new database full of people that I can get content in front of to educate them about Chiropractic?"

Perception is reality.  How you view social media will lead into how you use the platforms.  When you positively view the benefits to you as a Chiropractor and Business Owner, you will begin to see positive results.  Instagram is an image only, no link back, Facebook owned social media smartphone app.  

Instagram gives you another way to engage and educate your local audience.  

Benefits of Using Instagram:

  1. Build Your Local Office Brand Awareness

  2. Educate Visually
  3. Target Local Audience
  4. Increase Facebook Organic Reach (Bonus!)
  5. Build a Platform and Identify Yourself and Brand Yourself as a Local Healthcare Expert
  6. Instagram quickly surpassed Twitter with more an 400 Million Monthly Users

Let's Get Started!

First you need to download the Instagram App in your App Store.  

Create your Account-  This part is the no-brainer part.  So if you need help, schedule a time to work with me one on one at http://chirosocialtech.youcanbook.me

When creating your account you will need to determine do you

1.  Create a profile for your clinic?

2. Create a profile for you?

3.  Or create a profile for both?

Choose option 3.  If you follow this article to set up your Instagram scheduling and monitoring, it won't take much more time to have both.  People respond to a business and an individual different and this allows you to capture both!  More bang for your buck!

Create one profile with your clinic name and connect it to your Facebook Page and create a "personal" Instagram using your Dr. and/or D.C. in handle name.

Prime Your Account- Use the following tips to prime your Instagram profile so you are attracting the right people and getting valuable results

1.  Profile Image- Use a professional head shot for your personal Instagram account.  If you want to establish yourself as an expert, you need to act like an expert.  For your clinic's account, use the same profile image that you have for your Facebook and Twitter accounts.  When you are building a brand, you want to build consistency.  

*Bonus Tip- Using IFTTT (if this than that), set up an applet that will keep your Facebook, Instagram and Twitter profile images in sync.  So if you change your Facebook clinic profile image, it will update across the board.

2. About Section- In 150 Characters or Less, provide an about you.  Instagram is both emoticon friendly and very hashtag friendly.  You can also tag your personal profile on clinic about and vice versa.  Which is a great way to grow your audience, it is ok if people follow both.  As mentioned above, they will read each one and take the content in differently as it reads from a business versus an individual.  

3. Link-  This is the only organic link you get on Instagram.  One downside to Instagram is that each post is just that, a post.  If you put a link in the content portion, it will NOT hyperlink.  So you must use a call to action to click the link in your bio in your posts.  With that said, I change this link out from time to time.  

*Bonus Tip- Use bit.ly.  This has two major benefits.  First you can customize the bit.ly link to something that someone can easily remember and when see in your post can go type into safari.  I still recommend putting it as the link in bio section and giving that call to action. The second more exciting benefit is, Bit.ly will give you free analytics.  Creating a custom bit.ly link that is used just on Instagram will return you the Key Performance Indicator (KPI) you are looking for to see if the effort is worth the return.

4. Following- Think Local.  Unlike Facebook, which is predominately a Friends and Family connection, Instagram is more open.  The biggest secret to gaining Followers is to Follow.  The strategy you want to take is following people that you would want to follow you.  This is where you want to Think Local.  Instagram uses HashTags as keyword searches.  Start by simply searching your city as a hashtag.  From there you can search you city + state abbreviation, local sports or big companies, other local hashtags you see many people using from your initial city search.  The next step to following is to click on local profiles that will likely have a large local following.  Consider other local businesses, schools, non for profits, governmental departments, local recreational clubs and groups, and the list goes on from here.  You can click on the people that are following them and that they are following to find more of your local audience.  Similar to Twitter, Instagram has limits and follower/following ratios it will stop you at.  So just go until you can't go!  

Hashtags must be used on Instagram to get your content found in the feed outside of your followers list.  This is the second key secret to creating a presence on Instagram.  I don't see a need or purpose to have a large amount of people following me that couldn't potentially use my services, same for you.  With that said, I do not recommend using the "top hashtags".  What is the purpose of getting 100 likes that don't matter?  Honestly, nothing.  Use relevant hashtags, local hashtags, and tell a story with your hashtags.  You also should have a single hashtag created for you that you use on both accounts in most all posts.  This makes you all of the sudden easily searchable meaning easily able to be found!  You can put hashtags into the comment which gives you a cleaner look on the post content and still get major hashtag search keywords in there. 

Promote your Instagram Page internally.  You can promote your page on a TV if you a custom playlist.  Just use Canva and Camtasia to create a quick 10-15 second video.  Or outsource it to ChiroSocialTech or even Fiverr.   Put your Instagram Logo on business cards and if office print materials.  Create a place in office to take an image with your hashtag displayed.  Could add to this by doing a contest.  Contact ChiroSocialTech to brainstorm ideas for your office. 

*Bonus Tip- Use Crowdfire App to step on the gas pedal with this action of following/unfollowing and following users of specified accounts.  

5. Design- The Instagram niche is that it's feed is ONLY Images.  Keeping that in mind, it is very important to consider a theme for your profile.  There are many ways to do this, and remember, a theme could mean a "no theme" type strategy as well.  Since you have both personal and professional account, this does allow you to become more creative and use personal images on your @DrAccount and give your @ClinicAccount the more defined strategy.  

6.  Images-  There are basically two types of images, a real image you physically take and an image you digitally create.  Each then have a broad array of variations and enhancements that you can use.  You can be as simple or has advanced as you choose.  For example, if you consider yourself to have zero creativity.  You can a single theme, one template, and then just change one thing for each post.  This can be that simple.  But you can also have fun and allow people locally to engage with you and with Chiropractic on a different level.  Instagram, Facebook and Twitter and all of these free social tools allow you to put Chiropractic into households in your town.  Nothing about this is less than phenomenal for the opportunity it provides.  The door it opens to Chiropractic.

I use Paint and Canva heavily for creating images to post on Instagram.  The types of images I create are anything from real life photos, enhanced/edited versions, quotes, event call to actions, educational, motivational, inspiring, funny and everything in between.  When you are creating images, then about what you want the person seeing that image to do.  If they like it, they will scroll back up to see who posted.  If you could embark something onto someone's life today, what would it be?  A good method to follow is to create daily bucket ideas.  For example, Monday Motivational, Tuesday Tech, Wednesday Wellness, Thursday Throwback, Friday Fun, Saturday Stretch, Sunday Soul.

*Bonus Tip- You can search any image in google.  In the image advanced search tools, drop down usage rights and select labeled for free use with modification or labeled for free use depending on how you want to use the image.  You will have a plethora of usable, quality images at your fingertips for anything you want.  

7. Engagement- This is the most overlooked and underused part of Instagram by Chiropractors that are currently using it.  Social Media sites are social.  You must be social on them to some extent.  This is part of follow up.  On Facebook if someone comments, at minimum, like the comment.  On Instagram, daily I go through and like about 15-20 or more some days posts in my feed.  Weekly I do custom searches and like, follow and comment anywhere from 25-100 depending on what comes up.  Favorite, Follow, Comment.  Repeat.

*Bonus Tip- Outsource some of this!  You can hire a ChiroSocialTech to do it for you or to train someone to do it for you.  Think outside the box, you could offer this to a high school student or college student or family member that can do it from anywhere as long as they have internet access and a smartphone device.

8. Video-  Instagram will allow a video up to 60 seconds to be uploaded.  Video is KING of all content across all platforms and each one is consistently improving their video platforms.  I use Camtasia for video editing software and do highly recommend it.  Camtasia is $299; however, you will get your money's worth quickly if you have an overall video strategy.  There are free and cheaper tools available to start with. Videos are watched on Instagram more than Listened to.  Keep this in mind when you create videos.  Short, educational, inspirational, informing, and humorous are good categories to work from.  The video could be as simple as an image slide show to a cut up longer video with overlay editing.  Another task you can outsource through sites like Fiverr or a ChiroSocialTech training or do it for you.

*Bonus Tip- *Use Canva to easily and quickly create slideshow videos that tell a story, educate on a topic, break down a presentation or create awareness for an upcoming event.

9. Stories- Honestly, truly honestly, don't waste your time with stories.  If you have a large following and gain a highly engaged audience with your Instagram account, then yes.  Until then, don't even worry about it. 

10. Instagram Ads- Instagram is owned by Facebook and therefore you run Instagram Ads from your Facebook Platform.  Do not click the promote a post on your phone button.  While we are there, please do not boost posts in Facebook either.  Use the Facebook Ad Platform.  When setting up an Instagram ad you will want to choose only Instagram as the placement for the ad giving you ability to analyze just it's results.  In the platform you can run 6 images at the same time, in the same campaign and watch to see which one does better.  For more on building on Instagram Ad strategy that works for you, please schedule a consult at http://chirosocialtech.youcanbook.me

*Bonus Tip- When you run an Instagram Ad, the post does contain a clickable link!  Could be worth throwing small money to get linked back to say a schedule page or an event page.

Instagram Tools

Hootsuite-  This is my main social scheduling tool.  You can get the basic plan free and comes Highly Recommended to grow your Instagram, Twitter and Linkedin profiles with minimal effort and additional time.  I always recommend posting to Facebook in Facebook.

With Hootsuite you can access from desktop, chrome extension and smartphone app.  You can schedule the Instagram post from any of the 3 access points but when it is time to post, the smartphone app will notify you and you must open in Hootsuite App which will guide you to open the image in your Instagram App and can click Paste to input the text you scheduled with the image.  There are steps to the process, but you can still do a bulk schedule once a week, plan it out, create the images, schedule them and then just follow those quick, brainless steps to post throughout the week.  

Canva- Create Images.  Enough said, you will love for multiple reasons, this being just the start.  I use Canva every single day... just about!

Crowdfire App-  Automate and increase the rate at which you can follow and unfollow accounts.  This is optional to the rate at which you want to grow your Instagram.  I do not use this tool for Instagram, I do, however, use it for Twitter.

IFTTT- Using IFTTT I create applets to automate peices of my social media to fill in the full strategy.  The top Instagram applet is to Auto Tweet when you post to Instagram using the photo as a native Twitter photo.  If you click the Twitter option in Instagram it will only put a link to your Instagram.

Iconosquare-  Inexepensive, but does have monthly or annual cost.  Gives you deeper analytics, similar Hootsuite Scheduling and similar Crowdfire Engagement options.  I do not see the need for a Chirorpactic office to use this system, if though it's fairly cheap, 3rd party apps to social platforms can add up fast.

Latergramme-  Free Instagram Scheduling App.  I prefer Hootsuite because you can manage up to 3 different social profiles on Hootsuite with it's free plan.  However, Latergramme could be beneficial to use and then add 3 different accounts to your Hootsuite, such as Facebook group, Linkedin Profile and Twitter Profile.  

Publish-  Free Instragram and Twitter Scheduling App by the creators of Crowdfire.  This would be my second option to using something in addition or instead of Hootsuite.

RePost-  This allows you to RePost (similar to Retweet in Twitter or a simple Share in Facebook).  Yes in Instagram you need another app to do that!  This app I used a ton in the beginning of my Instagram research and was able to gain a good amount of followers doing so.  When you RePost someone, they are likely to follow you.  You could repost other businesses and events in your area to gain a higher exposure, faster.  This basic version is enough and Free.  The Pro is like $5, worth it. 

Hashtagify.Me- Search Hashtags

Chiropractic Hashtag Search.png

There are countless more tools you could use to look at stats, run contests and schedule posts.  Share any you have found that are worth checking out on the ChiroSocialTech Facebook page for the next Instagram post!

The following are options for Image and Video Editing of which there are about 4 times more of than above tools.  I have to go on record to say that while I have used a couple, I do not regularly use any of these.  Canva is my go to for most.  And now it has an App eliminating the need for most.  If you have limited storage on your phone, you want to consider apps that can serve more than one function for you.

PicPostPlay

POTO

Spark (by Adobe)

Layout (by Instagram)

FaceTune

Final Bonus Tip-

Connect your Instagram Feed into your Facebook Page as a Tab. You can go into this tab on your page and edit it's settings to stream an additional feed at no charge.  You can see below on my Facebook Page, I have the #Chiropractic Hashtag Feed embedded right into my page!  Pretty cool!  You could Feed YOUR Hashtag that you created as well!

To start building your Chiropractic Social Media Strategy, schedule a complimentary brainstorming session with ChiroSocialTech by going to http://chirosocialtech.youcanbook.me

You can also follow me on Instagram and get daily Social Media and Online Marketing Strategies to Align your #SocialSubluxation

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Nicole CowleyChiroSocialTech