When I first graduated from dental school, I chose to work in several well-established dental practices. Each day as I walked into work, all I could see was opportunity — to one day have my own business, to refine my skills, to use those refined skills to help people from all over the world. About a year and a half after school, I became a partner in what I thought was a very well-established office. Little did I know what a turn the business would take. Shortly after the buy-in, the other partner that was in the office stopped practicing dentistry and I was left without any patients and a staff that expected to be paid. Most of the patients became angry and left, and I wasn’t sure how I was going to make it.
At that point, I didn’t have money for marketing, so I turned to social media. I saw it as a way to market myself for free. I figured since everyone was on it, I may as well start showcasing my work. And I’m so glad that I did. Today, my practice looks much different than before. Today I have people traveling from all over the world for me to redesign their smiles. I have plenty of new patients in my office each month. And today, I have built the freedom in my business — and my life — that I had always dreamed of. And it’s all because of social media.
In a world where the internet has taken over, it’s silly to think that a new business would choose to not use social media as a marketing strategy. My first step was to start using Facebook and Instagram to connect with people individually about my business. I started sharing my passion with the world. Social media is all about the one-on-one connections and recognizing that early on can be a game changer. If you’re on social media, you need to be social. And that is exactly what I started doing — being social. So, how do you grow a social media page that brings in new business? It comes down to four simple steps.
1. Pick Your Niche
When you niche down, it will be easier for you to grow. Why? Because people are looking for specificity. One mistake I constantly see is trying to have a very broad audience so that as many people as possible notice you. In my experience, that’s the wrong approach. If you’re trying to establish yourself as a dog-training expert, then you will be marketing yourself to dog lovers and dog owners. You should be creating content about training dogs: what type of collar to use, what kind of leash to use, what hand signals to use, what age to start training your dog. If you instead created all kinds of content, such as posts about refurbishing furniture, you’re never going to gain a true following. Pick a niche and then create your social media content around that niche.
2. Edit Your Bio
Your bio is the first thing people see when they land on your page. Use it to make clear who you are, what you do, where people can find you and how they can reach you.
3. Nail Down Your Ideal Audience
You aren’t going to be able to attract everyone, and you shouldn’t want to. It may feel effective in the beginning, but it’s hard to sustain long-term growth with this method. Why? Because when you’re talking to everyone, you’re actually talking to no one. When you are talking to a specific person, they will be drawn to you because it feels like your content was created for them and their needs.
Let’s say you’re a bride and you’re looking for a wedding photographer. You land on a page that has pretty photos, but they’re lifestyle images. You’re probably going to keep scrolling. But, let’s say you land on a page filled with beautiful wedding photos. You will feel like this page was made for you, and you will likely start to be interested in the content they have created.
4. Be Consistent
Your following on social media grows when you are consistent. In order to get people to follow you and engage with you, and in order for you to have opportunities from the platforms, you need to be consistent. You can’t expect to post 10 photos one day, then disappear for two weeks and still see growth. Remember, you’re building one-on-one connections. So if you aren’t consistently showing up, people won’t engage with you. They won’t want to see what you are doing next. If you want a platform that grows, you need to show up every single day, no matter what.
Now that you have your four steps, it’s time to put them into action. And remember, social media is about long-term growth. It’s not a get-rich-quick strategy, so stick with it and stay consistent.