Get More Music Students With Instagram
In this episode, I map out strategies for building your Instagram audience and creating content that will help you get more traction on Instagram
Learn From The Masters
I encourage you to follow two or three Instagram marketing gurus and keep an eye on their accounts because whatever they are doing are things that they have realized work well on Instagram. So for example, I follow Gary Vaynerchuk. I follow Donald Miller in Neil Patel, and I notice that Gary Vee does a nice mix of inspirational quotes as well as IGTV. Same with Neil Patel, he uses a very similar strategy and I noticed that neither one of them, ever use short videos. Their videos are always on IGTV which simply means that they’re using a video that’s longer than 60 seconds. I always made 30 seconds, 60 seconds videos. I’ve now converted to, doing much longer form maybe two to five-minute videos, which can work out really great, especially for a music studio.
Focus On One Platform
So if you’ve got a couple of marketers, you really love, follow them on Instagram, and take note of their strategy. One thing that I’m not doing on Instagram that I want to do is Instagram Live and Instagram stories. But one thing I always do on social media, and I encourage you to do this as well, is I’ll just focus on one aspect of a platform for a while until I really feel like I’ve mastered it. Then I move on to another one and I use that same approach with the platform. I really want to explore TikTok. I know that’s a growing platform for businesses, but right now I’m really focused on Instagram. I’ll give it a few more months and then I’ll probably try it. I’ll probably add TikTok to my repertoire as well.
Keep an Eye On Your Competition
Follow your competition on Instagram. Note their strategy note, the hashtags that they, that they’re using, ask yourself how you can, how your Instagram strategy can be different than them. How we can be unique. You want to obviously stand out in your market from your competition. Also, find out what brands your customers are into and follow them on Instagram, through serving through talking to the moms in your studio, you can begin to identify some of the top brands that they follow and then follow them as well on Instagram, maybe simply ask them who do they follow on Instagram outside of their social world.
Your Music Studios’ Instagram Bio
I first want to talk about your bio. With your bio, you’re limited to only 150 characters and you’re only able to use one link. So your bio should be a statement about what you do, what your service is, and what’s unique about you. I would avoid an inspirational statement about music. I see music studios doing that a lot. Maybe they’ll say something like “discover your creative self through music”. I really would avoid that. Just come out and say, this is what we do and this is what’s unique about us. Also, emojis are great. They can really bring your copy to life and add a little bit of character.
How to Use More Than One Link In Your Bio
The one link that Instagram allows you. If you feel like that’s not enough, let’s say, for example, you have some sort of freebie, some sort of giveaway. You could use something like LinkTree, When they click on the link, LinkTree allows you to use three to four different links. So let’s say you teach three to four instruments in your studio. You could through link tree, have links to each one of those instruments, or you could just use your single, your homepage for your website as your single link.
Get Found With Hashtags
Hashtags will allow you to get found on Instagram. Some people follow hashtags. I follow hashtags. Now Instagram will allow you to use to 30 hashtags, but that looks a little spammy. Just a little overwhelming. There are conflicting opinions. Some marketers say 5 or 6 hashtags are good. Other marketers have said that 11 seems to get you the best engagement. I go with 11, I use 11 hashtags, and I try to really research my hashtags.
Research Your Hashtags
I encourage you to research your hashtags. Some people use hashtags to add some personality to their posts, maybe some humor. I really use my hashtags for simply getting found. Now you’ve got to ask yourself, who’s your ideal customer and what hashtags are going to get them over to you on Instagram. So moms are your ideal customer. So hashtags about music, hashtags about Beethoven or the Beatles, those are not as likely to attract moms, but hashtags that are clearly local, are more likely to appeal to moms. So for example, one hashtag I follow is called stlmoms (St. Louis).
Finding the Right Hashtags
Let’s say you’re based out of Dallas, a hashtag such as “#dallasmoms would be worth checking out. #ilovedallas s another one that might attract local moms. Let’s say you look up #dallasmusiclessons and you see that there are quite a few people following it. That there are quite a few people using that hashtag; that’s a good hashtag to use. Let’s say you look up #dallasmusiclessons, and there are only like five posts in there, but that’s not really going to necessarily be a great hashtag for you to use. Look at your competitor’s hashtags. Research those hashtags and there’s nothing wrong with using the same ones.
Go Wide and Get Niche With Hashtags
Whenever I create a post, I put my hashtags in my comments. I don’t put it in the text for my post. Either way is fine, but it’s recommended to have a bit of variety in your hashtags in terms of how broad you are and how niche you are. So again, if you’re based out of Dallas; you might have a hashtag #dallastexax. Well, that’s a very broad hashtag. #momsofdalls is getting a little bit more niche. #musiclessonsindallasmusic is super niche. Having that variety is definitely recommended.
Music Studio Branding
Your Instagram posts should reflect your brand colors. It should have the same feel and look of your website and the interior of your studio. Look on Instagram is to use the same filter on all of your images. So let’s say red is one of your brand colors. Perhaps you always use the same filter that has a red tint to it in all of your images. This would help create consistency.
Let’s say, whenever you’re going to use some inspirational quote, you use a template, maybe something that you created in Canva that incorporates your brand colors; so all of your quotes have the same template and the same font.
Building Your Music Studios’ Instagram Audience
So how do you get followers on Instagram? Well, for one is by creating content that is of value. The Instagram posts with the child, holding up the sheet of paper, their certificate of musical accomplishment. That’s not likely to have a lot of value beyond that kid and that child’s a parent, whereas an inspirational quote about parenting is likely to have a more broad appeal. Also engaging with people on Instagram, finding out where your customers hang out, and hang out there on Instagram and engage with people.
Setting the Stage
Making your Instagram images look good is key. Instagram is a visual platform. So thinking about the lighting in your photographs and in your video, thinking about the backdrop will definitely pay off; almost thinking of your music studio now as some sort of, photography in video set. So let’s say you’re teaching rooms kind of have just an off-white shade of paint on the walls. That necessarily isn’t going to look great on Instagram, maybe adding a fresh coat of green paint, something to make the shot look better.
Lighting for IG Images
Thinking about lighting in your rooms is important. Go to YouTube and research how to light a room for video or, or for photos. It’s really going to make a huge difference. Again, check out your competition. Are they taking bland photos in their space? If yes, it’s an opportunity for you to up your game in terms of your video and photography. No reason why you can’t get great-looking photos on an iPhone, great looking videos on an iPhone, but just by simply doing a little bit of research on how to make those pictures and how to make those videos look better, could have a huge impact.
Create a Social Media Calendar
So planning ahead with your post, creating a calendar for your studio, where you’re going to have some consistency and diversity of post types. You ideally want to be posting at least once a day. If you can plan out even just the week ahead.
- Monday: a photo of a kid holding up an award.
- Tuesday: kid playing music.
- Wednesday: student interview.
- Thursday: features a fun fact about a locally owned business
- Friday: an inspirational quote about parenting.
STL Moms for example; they always have these great inspirational quotes, obviously targeted at moms. It’s a positive message, a thought for moms. These get a lot of traction, no reason why you couldn’t incorporate something like that into your Instagram strategy.
Do These 3 things Today
But the three things that I really encourage you to do today is…
- Identify a few marketing gurus, follow them on Instagram
- Follow your competition, note their strategy, note, their hashtags, note, their strengths, and their weaknesses on Instagram
- Identify what brands your customers are following on Instagram. Follow them, look at what’s working for them, and incorporate that into your Instagram strategy.