Social media is a vital component of any successful fitness or yoga business. On any given day, 77% of internet users are active on at least one Meta platform. And if you’re not on Instagram or Facebook, your competitors are: 200 million businesses have active profiles on one of the two.
Social media can simultaneously act as a powerful lead generator and a wonderful community engagement tool. But the simple act of posting and liking will only do so much for your business. This route might help you generate a few likes here and there, but if you’re looking to grow your following, increase your reach, and ultimately communicate with your audience, you need to have a strategic social media plan in place. Think of your social media as another branch of your overall marketing strategy. It needs to feel connected to your other marketing efforts (such as your emails, your website, and your ads), be visibly on-brand, and have a somewhat regular and predictable cadence (to keep that darn algorithm happy).
Next, what platforms should I be on?
Unsurprisingly, the two most popular platforms are Instagram and Facebook. The research we’ve performed on social media platforms has led us to realize that there is a direct correlation between the average Instagram and Facebook user demographic and the population of active health and fitness consumers. There is also a direct correlation between customers feeling engaged with the studio community when the studio is active on its social media platforms.
Thankfully for us content creators (!), the types of content the two platforms require overlap a fair amount and even allow for cross-posting as a way to duplicate your efforts (although we generally wouldn’t advise this!).
Once we’ve dwindled down the platforms, we want to confirm our theory by researching and analyzing our target audience to ensure our target market is, in fact, actively on each platform. A few tips include:
Check your Instagram audience insights. Understand the demographics of your existing followers and further see who engages with your content.
Establish your potential followers. This helps to gain a greater understanding of your prospective reach.
Look closely at Instagram comments and DMs. This will give you an idea of what kind of content is resonating (and who it is resonating with).
Check your tags. If you go to your profile, you can see a bit more about who is tagging you and what they have to say. Do these customers fit your client profile
Research your competitors’ followers for extra credit.Wondering how? - Meta: you can go to the Meta Ad Library and type in your competitor’s name. This will give you an idea of what kinds of ads they are running and who they might be targeting. - Instagram: you may have to do a little more sleuthing. Look through your feed and see if you see an ad geared toward your target audience, and tap the three little dots in the top right corner. Then select “Why you’re seeing the ad.” This will show you what parameters the business was looking for when establishing its target audience.
How can I make this investment worth my while?
Here are our top tips for increasing your visibility, and therefore your success, on your social media channels:
Create quality content. Take the time to map out the type of content you want to share with your audience. This may seem like an obvious detail, but we often post meaningless content in our haste to get something up. Think about your overall pillars— i.e., showcasing your community, educating your audience on your services, etc.—and then break up your content based on each of these pillars. If you’re consistent enough in your content delivery, you’ll quickly see what kind of content resonates with your audience and can tailor future messaging and content accordingly. If you need a little extra direction, here are a few tips.
Keep it organized. If you post regularly to stories, create highlight albums to feature any new offers, classes, teacher profiles, and more. Keep the albums simple with engaging covers that are on brand and consistent with your overall messaging.
Add relevant hashtags. Instagram and Facebook give you the ability to expand your audience organically through the use of hashtags. Hashtags help drive awareness about your brand; they allow you to show up in client searches and drive more people to find your content. You can use up to 30 hashtags in a post or reel and 10 in a story. These hashtags can be related to your services, location, or special offer— anything you think your potential clients might be looking for that you can help solve. And if you’re curious if your hashtags are working, go directly to the post. - You’ll see a button called “View Insights.” Once you’re here, you can scroll to impressions and see how many impressions you received, where they came from—and, aha, how many came from your hashtags. Finally, for your story content, use your own branded hashtag. You don’t want clients finding your content and then moving away from your page. Instead, you want them to tap the tag and see more of your content!
Publish when it will be seen! This is a more nuanced tip, as each business will have a slightly different audience. Yoga studios often do well to post early in the morning, before 7 a.m. General research suggests posting on weekdays mid-morning is best, while Sundays tend to have the lowest engagement and reach. Be sure customers will see your content on social media!
Pay attention to your CTA. We often forget the CTA in our social media posts, but ultimately there is something you want your clients to do, right? Not all posts will have or need a CTA, but you definitely want to sprinkle in valuable CTA that will drive customers to your website, purchase page, etc., around 20% of the time.
Engage with your followers. One of the top reasons to utilize social media is the ability it gives you to interact directly with your followers. This can come in the form of replying to comments and messages and creating more interactive posts, including surveys and polls. Be sure to be in your account enough so a message doesn’t get left too long. Clients will feel more connected to you and your business if they feel you actually care what they have to say. In addition, make your brand feel personal. It allows your customers to connect with you on a deeper level. Think about how you can act/behave more like a person than a brand, so potential and current clients find your business more approachable.
It’s all video. Blame it on TikTok if you’d like, but video content is the go-to for engagement and interaction. Think about your own habits when you’re online. Do you stop and read all of the captions or pause when you find an interesting or engaging video? We’re not saying you should ditch the posts, but be sure to include live content in the form of reels and lives—video content provides the client with as close-to-real-time experience as possible.
Collaborate. One of the easiest ways to grow your audience with meaningful followers (again, you want quality vs. quantity!) is to collaborate with other like-minded businesses. This can be in the form of a giveaway or a story revealed across multiple accounts. For instance, you could start a video reveal with your studio and then pass part of the story onto one of your retailers—a local health-food shop, etc. The idea is to pass it back and forth so that the followers need to follow each of the accounts and stay engaged.
Social media provides a unique opportunity to reach clients where they are. There’s no question that your clients are on one social media platform or another. By utilizing a strategic social media plan and executing with commitment, you’ll find you’ll increase not only your overall visibility but also the success of your studio.