No longer just a place for selfies, Instagram has become an essential channel for healthcare social media marketing. More than one-third of all U.S. adults are on Instagram, according to the Pew Research Center, making it a great place to reach prospective patients. Most Instagram users are highly engaged, with 63 percent logging in at least once a day.
It’s important for practices to optimize their Instagram accounts for healthcare social media by setting up an Instagram business account. An Instagram business account allows you to present your practice as a local business, features your address and location prominently on the page, and allows users to contact you via phone or email right from the Instagram app.
According to Instagram, more than 200 million users visit at least one Instagram business profile daily. If you’re looking to take your healthcare social media to the next level, follow the steps outlined here to create your Instagram business account today.
Social media in healthcare: Setting up an Instagram business account
Step 1: Download the Instagram app
If you already have an Instagram account for your practice or for yourself for social media marketing purposes, skip ahead to step 3.
Instagram is available for download on iPhones, Androids, and Windows phones. Although Instagram is accessible in a desktop browser, you can only post to your accounts from a mobile smartphone, so downloading the app is a necessary first step.
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Step 2: Sign up for an account
Follow the on-screen instructions to create an account for yourself or your practice. You’ll need to select a username and password. To select a good username for social media in healthcare, choose something that identifies you, your practice, and your specialty. Don’t forget to fill in all the appropriate fields such as the name of your business and your website. Upload a professional photo as your profile picture or use your practice’s logo.
If you have a Facebook account, you may also create an Instagram account by logging into your Facebook from the Instagram app.
Step 3: Switch your account to an Instagram business profile
Now that you have an Instagram account to use for social media marketing, convert it to an Instagram business profile. You can do this by going into your settings, clicking “account” and then clicking “switch to a professional account.” Then select “business.”
You’ll be prompted to select a category. You may select “doctor” or “dentist.” You can also select your specific specialty, if applicable, such as dermatologist or plastic surgeon. We recommend you be as specific as possible so as to better satisfy patient searches. This will also help Instagram understand what kind of business you are.
Next, follow the on-screen instructions to input your contact information and practice location.
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Once you’re done filling out your business information, follow the on-screen instructions to link your new business Instagram account to your business’ Facebook page. (Skip this step if you do not have a Facebook page for your practice or if you’d rather not connect your accounts.) If you do connect your Facebook page and Instagram business account, you’ll be able to cross-post as well as display ads on your Instagram account.
Creating a business Instagram account not only allows you to present yourself on social media professionally, but it also unlocks insights you can use to further refine your medical social media tactics. With a business account, you can see analytics like the number of profile visits, website clicks, and audience growth. You can also view data on individual post performance as well as how users found your posts.
Need help figuring out social media for medical practices? Read the blog post “15 ideas to increase healthcare social media reach” for best practices.