Social media has taken the beauty industry by storm. Seemingly overnight, beauty entrepreneurs have become expected to market themselves on multiple platforms to keep up with changing business trends. But do beauty professionals really know what and how much to post on social media in order to succeed?
“Sometimes it’s hard for us to authentically show up on social media without giving too much of ourselves away,” says Sarah Fasolo, SALT Society's marketing manager and content director. Hair stylists are no exception to this confusion. Sarah continues by saying “stylists ask me all the time ‘how much personal information is too much to share on your professional page,’” in her episode “How to Keep It Authentic But Professional on Social Media” on the Hair Goals podcast.
Here we’ll talk about why social media is vital to creating strong relationships with clients, what you should and shouldn’t avoid on your professional page, and how to keep clients continually engaged.
Do Stylists Need to Build Relationships on Social Media?
While social media isn’t inherently a requirement for marketing yourself as a stylist, the evolution in technology and media has made this form of marketing far more effective as compared to other options. It creates an opportunity for you to showcase your talent and personality while also creating engaging content.
“The four pillars of content” is a term often used in the SALT Society education space when referring to the different facets of content creation. These four pillars are:
- Your creative process
- Your client experience
- After care
The “you” pillar is very important when creating content that builds strong relationships with clients, particularly with social media marketing. This pillar shows who you are, not only as a stylist but as a person as well; revealing your journey, likes and dislikes, and what makes you unique. “A lot of people can create beautiful hair and work in beautiful salons,” says Sarah Fasolo, “but it’s you, the individual, that really connects with clients.” This ultimately builds the connection and trust needed for clients to come back.
How Much Is Too Much?
We hear it all the time: “how much is too much to share on my professional page?” And while this answer isn’t easy, there are several strategies you can use to better understand how social media can help build strong relationships with your clientele.
One strategy to consider is properly identifying your audience. Yes, we all want clients, but the kind of client you hope to acquire with your page is crucial when looking at how to approach your feed. For example, stylists who want to acquire more clients in their thirties, forties, or fifties might be ok posting images and videos related to family. For many women in this age group, family is a common topic to bond on.
5 Things You Can Share on Your Professional Social Media Account
Even with an established target audience, it can still be difficult to determine what type of content is professional enough for your social media page. Here are five things you should consider including on your social media accounts to keep them professional.
1. Your Career Journey
Sharing your career journey is an incredibly personal thing to include on social media that many stylists overlook. It’s a versatile topic in that it shows your personality, but does so around a highly professional topic. Prospective clients may be inspired by your story, or intrigued by your personality that comes through in your story telling. If you’re looking for more engagement with your content, your story might even attract aspiring stylists too.
2. Things You Love About Your Job
Everybody has at least one thing they love about their job, so take the time to show your audience why you love what you do in a fun and creative way. Most clients seek out stylists who enjoy their job, so don’t be afraid to sound passionate. As Fabienne Fredrickson, founder of Boldheart® explains, “the things you are passionate about are not random, they are your calling.”
3. What Makes You Unique
At Salt Society, we always ask the question “what is your 10 percent magic?” Essentially, this begs the question of what makes you unique. Authenticity is a crucial component of successful social media marketing, but it’s important to identify what kind of uniqueness is professional to share. Stylists should consider what makes them unique to other stylists in the area and what makes their client experience different from others.
4. What Gives You Joy
Your professional social media account doesn't have to revolve around the things you love about your job. It should show your clients what your interests are, within reason. This is perhaps the most difficult kind of post to include on a professional page. Consider what things give you joy, make you laugh, or make you smile; all while keeping your target audience in mind. While most people love pictures of animals, not everyone wants to see a picture of a margarita from a weekend with the girls.
5. Your To-Do List
This is one of the more creative options stylists can use to show clients what working with you looks like. Going through “a day in my life” Instagram reel is a really effective way to keep your page professional while also creating a strong relationship with your clientele. Current clients will love seeing themselves on your page, while prospective clients will appreciate the transparency of your services. Just remember to make sure your clients are comfortable being included in the content on your page!
How to Determine What to Avoid Sharing on Your Professional Social Media Account
Now that we’ve looked at some suggestions for what you can include on your social media accounts, it’s equally important to touch on the topics and content to avoid. One quick way you can determine if a post is professional or appropriate is to ask yourself “would I feel comfortable talking about this with my client in-person?” If the answer is no, chances are the content doesn’t belong on your account.
Some examples of topics to avoid in your content are politics and religion. While this may be difficult, given how politics have become a part of everyday conversation, it’s best to avoid subjects that create polarity. Another form of content you should exclude from your professional page is pictures that show more skin than you would feel comfortable showing in your salon. Fashion and personal style are crucial to your brand, but there’s nothing wrong with keeping it within reason.
Make Social Media Engagement Your Friend
Social media is your friend! Don’t overthink too much and let fear of offending or coming off as unprofessional hold you back from the wonderful value and exposure it can provide. Being mindful of the things you post can only lead to a far more curated following that matches your desired clientele and community.
In order to keep this audience, however, you need to remember to keep them engaged with your content. Get your following involved with posts that spark conversations and participation. For example, in addition to a post of your favorite things in June, include a caption encouraging others to share their favorite things.
To ensure optimum social media engagement, try to incorporate as much video content as you can. Instagram reels is an incredibly useful tool to engage with your audience and clients. Just make sure that your content offers something educational or entertaining to keep your community involved.
Remember, don’t let social media marketing overwhelm you. Just be your authentic self and don’t second-guess yourself!