Instagram Marketing for Chiropractors
BY: DR. MIKE HAMILTON
INCEPTION CHIROPRACTIC WEBSITES
Many chiropractors want to expand their presence on social media. One way to do this is by using Instagram. In this article we break down some strategies for chiropractic Instagram marketing and how to set up an account. I hope this helps.
What is Instagram?
Instagram is a social network platform similar to Facebook and Twitter. They have a free app available to download for any iOS or Android device. It has an emphasis on sharing photos and videos but posts can only be made via a mobile device. Considering that just about everyone has a smartphone these days, this certainly shouldn’t be viewed as a limitation. Quite the contrary, in fact. Instagram has quickly positioned itself as the social media platform of choice among younger generations, especially Millennials.
Instagram has evolved a lot recently. Gone are the days of an endless stream of pictures displaying everyone’s last meal. Last year Instagram added direct messaging, live video, albums and stories. These additions have allowed it to better compete with the other major social media platforms and the proof is clear when you look at the steady increase of users over time. The fact is that Instagram is here to stay and looks to be a major player for a long time to come.
How Can Instagram Be Beneficial For A Chiropractic Office?
Instagram has over 800 million monthly users, 60 million photos posted each day and those photos receive 1.6 billion likes. There is no denying that there is a clear opportunity here to gain exposure for your practice. The best news is that the only cost associated with this exposure is a small investment of time. Paid advertising is available should you choose to go down that path but by no means is it absolutely necessary.
Instagram can also be a way for a chiropractic office to connect with other small businesses in your city. The recent traction of the “shop local” movement has helped to create a strong network of relationships within communities. This can provide advertising opportunities and a new flow of referrals. Instagram makes it easy to create these connections with the use of hashtags. Tagging your posts will allow them to show up in searches and they also allow you to easily interact with other posts coming from your area. More on this later.
How Can A Chiropractor Use Instagram?
Staying visible to current patients can certainly help with retention and it’s more cost effective to keep a patient than to find a new one. This is nothing new. Sure, most chiropractic offices already send out newsletters and other informational emails to keep in touch with their patient base. Unfortunately, these types of communication usually lack any personal connection. Instagram is the exact opposite. Posts often have very little in the way of informational content but the personal feel of a funny, behind-the-scenes picture can be priceless.
You can also position yourself as the community expert when it comes to health and wellness by posting useful information that people will find valuable. This can be done with a short video or an infographic. Over time you build up a trust with anyone who follows you, including people who may not be a patient in your office. In the future, when someone needs help with something, you are more likely to come to mind as an option to help with their issue since you have positioned yourself as a great resource over time. It’s definitely a long-term approach, but it’s effective.
How to Setup a Chiropractic Instagram Account
To create an Instagram account for your chiropractic office, you must first have a Facebook Business page created. That way, you can link the accounts together so if in the future you run ads, you can use both platforms. After you have the Facebook page, you need to go to the Apple App Store, or Google Play Store and download the app. You can only create an account from the app, not on a desktop computer.
Once you have the app downloaded, you will be asked to create a name and password. Make sure to use your full business name as it is displayed on your website and Google Maps. Choose a password that you can remember to save hassle in the future.
Next, you will be asked to choose a username. This will be unique to your page, and it will be how other users find you. I recommend choosing a username with your business name in it like: @GreenBayChiropractic or with your doctor name: @DrMikeHamilton.
After you have your username picked out, Instagram will ask you for a profile picture. You can choose any picture you want, but remember this is how potential new patients will first be introduced to your office. I recommend using a high-quality doctor picture, but your logo works well too.
When you have finished choosing a profile picture, it is time to enter in a Instagram Bio. This is where you can say a little bit about your office, and what sets you apart from your competition. I recommend making this unique. Some users use emojis and create lists, it is important to make this as personalized to your office as possible. Also, you can put in a link to your website.
Lastly, you will need to link your new account to your Facebook business page. This will allow Instagram to pull more information for your account. Link your accounts, and verify that all of the information is correct.
Instagram will also ask you to enter in an email, phone number and address. This will allow users to interact with your office directly from the app. It is important to add this in. One other thing I would like to point out is to make sure your account is set to public. This should be the default, but some existing accounts may be private. If you have a private account, a user will have to request to see your profile.
Types of Chiropractic Instagram Posts
On Instagram there are many different types of posts. As a chiropractor, it is important to have a variety of different posts. Instagram’s main focus is pictures, but there are many different types of pictures and themes you can post. I will break down a few of the types below, but don’t be afraid to get creative. The account reflects your business and should allow your patients and potential new patients to get to know you a little bit better. This will help with patient retention.
One of the most popular posts as a chiropractic office on Instagram is a behind the scenes post. This can be a picture of a doctor with a patient to a front desk associate filing documents. The ideas are endless here, but the main goal should be to allow patients to see a different aspect of your chiropractic team than they would if they came into the office. Patients like this, and it allows them to connect with you better. Also, it is a great way to show character!
Another post idea that you could do would be pictures of your staff. This wouldn’t have to be a behind the scenes type post. It could be a family photo of one of your staff members. Or, it could be a picture of you and your staff together. This will allow your patients to see a different side of you and your team, apart from the typical doctor-patient relationship. I recommend showcasing your hobbies. If you like to fish, and you take pictures of you with your fish, don’t be afraid to post one on your business account. This will allow your patients to see another side of you, which allows them to build a more lasting relationship with you.
Some employees will even have their own personal Instagram account. You should follow their pages and interact with them as well. This will help build better relationships within your office. Also, if they ever post a picture that relates to your chiropractic office, repost it. This is a common post on Instagram, and it allows businesses to showcase their employees.
One post that is common among businesses on Instagram is an “influencer post.” This could be a post with someone a business sponsors, or just a famous person who happens to be a customer. Doing this as a chiropractic office can be tough. But, many doctors are team chiropractors for colleges. You could post a picture with the team and say something like “The Wisconsin Badgers football team came in for a visit today. Good luck this year! @WisconsinBadgers” This will allow your post to also show up on the tagged page of the person/people in the photo!
Giveaways, contests and questions are another type of post that your chiropractic office could do on Instagram. This can be anything from “Enter to win a free adjustment!” to “The winner will receive a $20 giftcard to (Local Restaurant)” This is a great way to get a lot of interaction on your post, and to get patients involved. I mean, who doesn’t want a free adjustment?
You can also do chiropractic educational posts. Many doctors are always stressing patient education, and using Instagram can be a great way to keep patients educated! I recommend only posting images or infographics and not prompting them to read a long passage. It can be a video of the doctor giving 5 quick tips, or it can be an infographic of 3 things to know about your back. The ideas and opportunities are endless here. Your creativity is your only limit!
The last post idea that I would like to give you is a simple motivational post. This can be a picture of a quote, or a cool picture with the quote in the description. These are always great for interactions with your patients. But, if you stick to these types of posts, your patients will lose interest. I recommend posting these every once in a while, to break up the trend of just pictures.
You don’t need to use these post ideas on your chiropractic Instagram account. Feel free to come up with your own ideas to add a more personal touch. If you have any questions or want to run an idea by us, feel free to reach out.
How to Format Your Pictures on Instagram
Instagram is different than any other social media site when it comes to sharing pictures. For the longest time, your Instagram pictures had to be a square. But, recently in their updates you can now post a regular picture. Most people still follow the unwritten rule of posting square pictures. There is not a right or wrong here, just make sure that the formatting makes sense and doesn’t ruin the picture quality.
On Instagram you can also add filters to your pictures to add effects. It is not necessary to add these filters, but some users choose to. As a chiropractic office, if you are posting professional pictures of your staff, you will not need to add a filter. But, if you take your own image and want to add some effects to it, I recommend trying a filter. The different types of filters are: Normal, Clarendon, Gingham, Moon, Lark, Reyes, Juno, Slumber, Crema, Ludwig, Aden, Perpetua, Amaro, Mayfair, and many more. All of the filters are slightly different and do different things to the pictures. I recommend testing out filters on your pictures.
As far as the physical format of your pictures, Instagram uses 1080px by 1080px for a square image. 1080px by 1350px for vertical images and 1080px by 566px for horizontal images. There is nothing that you have to worry about here, this just means that they may decrease the quality of your pictures after you post them. I just wanted to let you know, in case you are photo-savvy and wanted to know.
Chiropractic Videos on Instagram
Instagram also allows you to post videos onto your page. There are three different places that you can post these videos, your story, your page and Instagram TV. I am just going to touch base on your story and your page. There is no need for a chiropractic office to go through the hassle of posting Instagram TV content. It is a fairly new feature and not many people are using it, mostly TV stations and large companies.
On your Instagram account you have the option to add pictures and videos to your story. This is a section where the posts expire after 24 hours. I recommend posting specials and events onto your story. This will make a patient think that it is more of a limited time offer. You can also post inside looks of the office, things that patients will normally not see. This could be the doctor working in his/her office. The front desk staff out for lunch, etc. There are many different possibilities here.
You can also post videos to your timeline. This will add them to your account and they will be permanent. Here, I recommend posting promotional videos are videos of the doctor. An idea that I have for Instagram posts is similar to what I recommend for Facebook Ads. It would be a video of the doctor explaining 4 tips to help back pain at work, or 5 stretches to do every night. Simple tips that will help out a patient. Don’t try to sell them anything, just give them advice. Most people don’t have the intent of using Instagram to shop, so why try to sell them something?
How to Write a Chiropractic Instagram Caption
Writing effective Instagram captions can be tricky. It’s hard to make a post that appeals to everyone. But, there are some things that you can do to make sure you are successfully portraying a consistent brand voice.
One thing that you can do in your Instagram captions is including a call to action. A call to action on Instagram is asking your followers to do something after they see your picture and read your caption. This can be anything from “Call us today” to “Please leave a like and a comment.” I wouldn’t include one in every caption, but if you are announcing a special then you could include a call to action. Another popular one is “Click on the link in our bio,” where you could have a landing page set up just for Instagram users.
Hashtags are a big thing on Instagram. They are a way to set your post apart, and users can search directly for hashtags. The hashtags you use can be anything from #Chiropractic to #GoPackGo. Use anything that applies to the picture you are sharing of your office.
A cool trick that you can use is using the hashtag of your office name. For example, #GreenBayChiropractic, that way the hashtag will pop up as well as your account if someone searches for you. And if you have patients and staff that post about your office, they can use the hashtag as well.
You can also use hashtags to run contests. This could be something along the lines of “Post a picture of you being healthy, tag us and use #GetHealthyInGreenBay for a chance to win a free massage!” A key thing to note here, is that anyone on Instagram can use that hashtag, so you’ll want to use something that is unique to your office.
Overall, there are many different ways to caption and hashtag your pictures. Just remember to do whatever fits best for your office. Don’t portray a different image of your clinic online that you do in the office. If you have any questions about captioning your Instagram captions, feel free to reach out.
How to Market an Instagram Account as a Chiropractor
Now that you have your account all created and you know all of the different posts types, you may be wondering, How should I use Instagram to market my chiropractic office, and how can I get new patients from Instagram?
There are many different strategies that you can use while doing chiropractic Instagram marketing. An important thing to do as you start marketing on Instagram is to gain a following. One way that I recommend to do this is to put a sign up in your office stating “follow us on Instagram.” Also, I would recommend emailing your patients with a link to your Instagram page. Another way that you can gain followers is to ask your patients in person, you could say “Hey Sue, we just got an Instagram page for the office. Check us out and give us a follow!”
These are only a few ways to gain followers, and I’m sure you have your own ideas. Do whatever works best for you. The most important thing when advertising on Instagram as a chiropractor is to make sure people are actually seeing your posts.
Once you have a good amount of followers, it is time to start converting your followers into patients. There are many different ways you can do this as well. A common way to do this is to post a new patient special. An example of this would be “We are having a new patient special for a $29 Consult and Xrays for the month of September. Come stop in!” Now, you may not get a large response from this, but it is a step in the right direction.
Another great way to convert patients is to use a chiropractic Instagram marketing plan. This can be a series of posts that’s end goal is to get patients to convert. An example strategy of this can be posting a educational video first, then having a testimonial video of one of your patients, then lastly having an offer or telling your followers that you’re here to help.
The only way of truly getting new patients on Instagram is to have your followers be friends and family of your current patients. This is a hard task to do and it will take a lot of work to build your following. Take it slow, and don’t give up when it is initially unsuccessful. You may need to use ads to increase your following.
How to Create Chiropractic Instagram Ads
Instagram also allows you to run ads, or sponsored posts. This is a way where you can pay for increased reach and engagement. Since Instagram is owned by Facebook, you have to create the ads under the Facebook Ad Platform. No big deal, but you just need to make sure that you have your Facebook business page linked to your Instagram account.
Once you have the accounts linked, go to the Facebook Ad Platform. Here you can create an ad and specify that you would like it to be displayed only on Instagram. Another thing that you could do is if you already are running Facebook Ads, you can choose to show them on both Instagram and Facebook.
As far as what to advertise, I recommend starting it slow. Most offices will start with a discount deal ad. This can work, and it has worked in the past, but it tends to flatline after a few months. Another strategy that can work is the community expert method. This will be the series of 3 videos that I mentioned previously. The first being a tip or help video like “5 Ways to Help Neck Pain.” Then the second being a testimonial video with a patient. Lastly, telling them if they are still curious to reach out to you.
There are many different types of Instagram Ads that you can do. Try out different styles, find the one that works the best for your office.
I hope this guide helped you understand chiropractic Instagram marketing. If you have any questions, feel free to reach out.