Using Instagram to Attract New Vet ClientsPosted: April 3, 2019 - By Kalena McElroy
Instagram isn’t just for selfies and food photos, it’s an incredibly effective marketing channel with the highest engagement rate of any social media platform by far. The photo focused app helped to popularize influencer marketing and a host of successful campaigns around catchy hashtags. It’s also a favorite to share photos of everyone’s favorite companion: #Pets. Veterinarians can easily tailor their Instagram marketing strategy to attract new clients, gain exposure for their practice, and drive visits to their website.
Engage with potential clients
Discover and interact with pet accounts and photos in your area by using Instagram’s geotags and region-specific hashtags like #DogsOfBuffalo. Users on this platform often reciprocate likes, comments, and follows, so thoughtfully engaging with other accounts will likely prompt them to check out your Instagram and website. Be sure to include a geotag on all of the photos you post to be more visible.
Another way to get more interaction is by reposting user generated content, because who doesn’t like to wake up to puppy photos? Instagram users typically love the exposure, just don’t forget to give them credit. Mention in your bio that pet owners can tag your account or use your branded hashtag to have their photo reposted.
Follow and utilize hashtags
Using a location or niche-specific hashtag in your posts will help showcase your practice to the right audience. One study found posts that include at least one hashtag receive 12.6% more engagement than those without hashtags. Follow certain hashtags that potential clients in your area may be using and interact with the posts to increase your account’s visibility and engagement.
Contrary to popular belief, using the most trending hashtags like #dogsofinstagram isn’t a great strategy since your post will be instantly buried below thousands of others. Instead, strategically choose up-and-coming or ultra-specific hashtags relevant to each photo like #MiniPiggy or #SDdogs to get more views and engagement.
Though photos still get more engagement than videos on the app, the average engagement rate for videos has increased since its inception six years ago. Instagram users appreciate authenticity and like to see the real people behind the account. Show how friendly your staff are and how welcoming your practice’s space is with a behind-the-scenes video or Insta story.
500 million people watch Instagram stories every day, that’s more than twice as much as Snapchat. Stories last for just 24 hours, but are a great way to drive engagement and catch the eye of prospective clients. With the app’s polls and question stickers you can even gain insight and feedback from users.
Instagram is an extremely lucrative marketing tool for businesses to tell their story through imagery — veterinary practices fit that mold perfectly. It’s never too late to get your practice started on Instagram. All it takes is an hour or two on the app each day to begin boosting visibility and to tap into niche communities.
Follow us on Instagram at @demandforce4animals and tag your photos to get featured!