Social media trends constantly change, and there are always fun and new features being added. If you don’t keep up, your fitness or wellness business will get left behind and won’t have a strong online presence.
These are 3 trends that your fitness or wellness business needs to follow in 2018 so that you continue to have a strong online presence and keep both your paying and potential new members engaged:
1. INSTAGRAM STORIES
Instagram Stories first launched in August 2016, and they’ve gained a ton of popularity since then. There are currently 300 million daily active users, which is more than half of Instagram’s 500 million daily users. If you don’t already use Instagram Stories, 2018 is the year to start.
A lot of changes have been made to Instagram Stories since they were first released, and new features are constantly being added. These are the ones that’ll help increase your brand awareness the quickest and most effectively:
Feature #1: Polls
Polls allow you to ask questions with two different answer options, and your followers can tap on either button to submit their answer. You’re able to see who votes and what they vote for. Once someone votes, it’ll show them the percentages of votes for each option.
This is useful when you’re unsure about something and want to get the opinion of your studio’s members. For example, let’s say you’re undecided about adding a class on Saturdays to your schedule. Ask your members about this with a poll on Instagram Stories.
Remember, stories disappear after 24 hours. You’ll want to keep a close eye on the results of your poll and make a note of them before they disappear.
Feature #2: Locations
Add locations to your stories. People can click on the location to see a map, as well as other posts that have the same location.
When you add a location, it appears on local stories as well. For example, when we add a Loud Rumor location tag to our posts, it’ll appear in our city’s Instagram Stories. This means a lot more people who live in your area see the post.
This is a great feature for local businesses who depend on foot traffic in particular because it’s basically free advertising. If you have a special deal going on, film a quick video that explains the deal, then add your location so that people in your area see the story.
The more that you add locations to your stories, the more exposure your address will get. Encourage your members to post Instagram Stories and tag your location as well so that all of their followers see your business.
Businesses that haven’t caught on to locations yet are falling behind and missing out on a ton of free exposure … and this is just 1 of many ways that your business can stand out in the fitness or wellness industry.
Feature #3: Hashtags
Similar to adding locations to your stories, hashtags have their own feed as well. Let’s say you post a quick video of a workout class on your Instagram Stories and include #fitness. Anyone who does a search for #fitness on Instagram has the ability to see your story, which will appear with other stories that use that hashtag.
2. MESSENGER CHATBOTS
Have you ever messaged a page on Facebook Messenger and received a response right away? You were likely chatting with a bot. There are currently 100,000 monthly active bots on Facebook Messenger, and that number is only going to get bigger.
Chatbots are still relatively new but quickly growing in popularity, and it’s easy to see why. They’re great for customer service because they allow people to get information about your business quickly, and it saves time for employees since the bot answers questions for them. If people have questions that can’t be answered by the bot, they still have the option to chat with real people.
Facebook Messenger is also a lot more engaging than email with a higher open and click through rate. On average, Facebook Messenger has an 80% open rate and the click through rate is 4-10X that of email. That’s huge!
3. LIVE STREAMING / VIDEO
You’ve likely noticed that there are A LOT of videos on social media, especially Facebook and Instagram. That’s because video posts get more engagement and have a 135% broader reach than images.
At the 2016 Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Mark Zuckerburg said:
Most of the content 10 years ago was text, and then photos, and now it’s quickly becoming videos. I just think that we’re going to be in a world a few years from now where the vast majority of the content that people consume online will be video.
And he’s right … video has taken over social media.
Live video does especially well. Both Facebook and Instagram have live video features, and these have seen even better results than pre-recorded video. People spend 3X longer watching live video, and Facebook’s algorithm makes them appear higher on people’s news feeds.
Here are a few ways to incorporate live video on your social media channels:
- A Q&A session where viewers type their questions into the comments
- Live stream a workout class
- Talk about upcoming events or promotions that you have going on
Follow these steps to post a live video from your phone:
- Go to your business’ Facebook page.
- Click on “Write something,” as you normally would when you post on Facebook.
- Click on “Live Video.”
You can also stream pre-recorded video from your computer. This requires more steps, but Facebook has detailed instructions on how to do this.
Don’t worry about having special video equipment. Most smartphones now have high-quality cameras, and these work just fine for posting video on social media.
What social media features do you plan to use for your fitness or wellness business in 2018? Let us know in the comments below!
Mike Arce is the CEO and founder of Loud Rumor, a lead generation company for fitness studios and independent gyms that supports their customers with sales training and techniques to grow and scale.
Mike has spoken for companies like Infusionsoft, the Better Business Bureau, ASBA, and Local First – all on the topic of Local Business Internet Marketing. He has a passion for local businesses and helping them grow. You can get fresh, updated tips from Mike here.