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Well hello there! You can keep up with Ile Alafia Design Co. at our blog. Here you'll learn about my experiences, the processes we put in place to keep the studio running, and my faith. Scroll down to take a peek.

How I Used Instagram Stories to Make Over $500,000

It’s no secret, we are living in the digital age. Instagram and Facebook have become this generation’s apps of choice, Instagram especially. Years ago, brands realized the advertising opportunities these platforms provided – my last job included. Over the span of 7 months, I used Instagram Stories to open up a new revenue stream for them, and brought the company over $500,000 in revenue from social media. #ImThatBish

Before opening my studio, I worked as a Social Media Coordinator at a cosmetic surgery center. Florida is the HUB for plastic surgery. Legally, surgeons are not required to carry malpractice insurance so the prices are naturally lower. People like you and me travel from all over the US and even abroad to get surgery done in Florida – Miami and Fort Lauderdale specifically.

Now why does any of this matter? With thousands of potential patients up for grabs, centers had a bigger pool to advertise. Below I’m going to share just how I helped them earn that money, and ways you can implement those same steps in your business.

The Reasoning Behind It

It’s Personal

Instagram Stories allows you to connect with you ideal client in a way that’s difficult using only your feed. Things don’t have to be color-coded, or even cleaned up. You just have to show up! For 15 seconds your audience gets to see a peek in your life.

Have you ever heard for the ‘Know, Like and Trust’ factor. It basically means, clients buy from companies they trust. How do you develop trust? Both parties have to take the time to get to know each other. IG stories give businesses the opportunity to really bring a client close. There’s a lot you can do with 15 seconds. Make it count.

You’re Not Fighting an Algorithm

You’re not really fighting with an algorithm. For the most part, IG stories play in chronological order. As long as the account your running consistently pushes out content, you’ll always appear at the top of their story feed.

How I Brought In Revenue

You’re probably thinking, “Girl, I know all that already.” How did YOU bring in half a million dollars?

Planned Content

Let’s be honest, everything takes intention. Generally, at the beginning of the month we would list out the number of promotions we wanted to run. I would coincide my content with that. Let’s say that Brazilian Butt Lifts were on sale this week.

Monday:

  • I get on camera and welcome everyone to the week.
  • Do a short poll to see if anyone is awake.
  • Let everyone know BBLs were the special of the week.
  • Post a stand alone advertising graphic
  • Have a doctor go over what a BBL is in a few stories

Tuesday

  • BBL surgery from start to finish
  • Let patients know the qualifications to get one
  • Use the link in bio for a free consultation

Wednesday

  • Before and Afters of the BBL procedure
  • How to prepare for surgery
  • Post Care
  • Show ‘What’s In My Surgery Bag’ video

Thursday

  • Pop in on a patient in Post-Op for a testimonial
  • Patient Q&A sticker

Friday

  • Remind them special is ending this week
  • Re-cap surgery and prep
  • Post Ad Graphic again

Show the Process

People LOVE to see other people’s processes. It gives them an idea if they are on the right track, and honestly it’s entertaining. An episode of HGTV’s Flip or Flop wouldn’t be as entertaining if they didn’t show contractors putting down the floors. Producers show Christina picking out the backsplash for the kitchen. It makes you feel like you’re on the journey with them.

Don’t be afraid to show things that AREN’T finished. I implemented this by showing the process of surgery. I would pop in at the beginning and show myself getting dressed for surgery. Then I would introduce the doctor and show every cut and stitch. That brought ease to our patients. They could see the process happening before them, and it BUILT TRUST. I had people come in the office and tell me that our stories helped calmed their nerves about going under general anesthesia.

Become Their Friend

Drop the stiff talk. It’s social media for God’s sake. Be social. I found that so many surgery centers only educated their patients. Cosmetic surgery is a big deal. It’s a person’s body, and medical accolades aren’t the only thing that will convince a person to book with you.

I would respond back to female patients using, ‘sis’. Something so simple not only drops the stiff white coat, but again, builds trust. Patients were more likely to DM and ask us questions, or send us update pictures.

Instagram WANTS you to use the platform socially. You can’t only crank out posts. You need to also comment, like pictures, and  ENGAGE in order to get engagement back. One thing I started practicing was commenting 25-50 times on other accounts times a day. It helps broaden your reach, and tells instagram that you truly are interacting with accounts.

Use Culture to Your Advantage

Culture is constantly changing; use it to your advantage. If there’s a popular event circulating the web. Apply it to your Instagram feed! One account that does this well is ‘The Real’. They apply trending topics on their feed while still staying on brand. Use the popularity wave to for your advantage, and get in on the fun while it’s still HOT. Remember when #KiKi challenge became popular? Drake had thousands of people across the world dancing to his song? So many businesses unrelated to music and entertainment used that challenge to their advantage to make money. Turn on the camera, and use culture to your advantage.

Call to Actions

At the end of the day, your audience is only going to do what you tell them to do. They don’t know what’s in your bio. Your followers have zero clue of the goodies that await in your email list. You have to tell them. Make sure you take every opportunity to create a call to action for you followers. If you posted about the new blog you just posted, tell your audience to click the link in your bio. Want them to boost engagement on your picture, ask your followers a question, and tell them to comment their answers below. All these things work together to help you boost your reach, and increase leads/sales.

Check Your Analytics

Data doesn’t lie. There’s been debate on whether a business account hurts or helps your visibility on Instagram. I personally still have a business account. Use the information Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook, etc. gives you and adjust accordingly. If you see that your followers don’t engage with quotes, why continue posting them? If you get the most likes and comments on pictures that show your face, guess what you have to do? Show your face more! Let the data guide your decisions. Find hashtags that fall in line with your industry. One resource I enjoy using is called ‘For Display Purposes Only‘, because they find hashtags that help build growth on your account. They also show overused and ineffective hashtags to steer away from.

Have Fun

Often times as business owners, we are so busy trying to generate leads, we forget the true purpose of these platforms. Have fun! Yes, making money on Instagram is amazing, however, it will only stress you out if you’re not enjoying it.

Let me know if you learned anything, and some of your favorite tips when it comes to social media marketing!

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