It’s hard to believe that Social Media didn’t really exist when I started out as a Makeup Artist 16 years ago (does anyone actually remember MySpace?). It’s safe to say that Social Media has really changed the landscape for all businesses, but especially those that have such a visual basis, like photography and makeup artistry.
Social media should be an important part of your business strategy, and having a great presence on social media can really boost your business. Remember though, that you don’t OWN your social media profile, you are at the whim of Facebook, Instagram or whatever other profile that you are using, and there are some guidelines to follow if you want to make the most of the platforms. Social media is constantly changing and it’s difficult to keep up with all the changes to the “Algorithms” and to know what’s best. I recommend listening to the Social Media Marketing podcast to keep up to date with the latest news.
I am finding that more and more of my clients are looking to social media now, and I’m getting bookings through my social media, and not just for personal clients, some commercial clients are booking me through social media too. (Remember though, to always shift the conversation over to email after the initial enquiry). Right now (mid 2018) the two main platforms I recommend for a makeup artist working in commercial, fashion, bridal and special occasion makeup are Facebook, and Instagram.
If you’re going to do social media, make sure you’re doing it right!
- DO engage with your followers. People come to social media to CONNECT with others. The biggest change in recent times (Jan 2018) is Facebook changing its focus to CONNECTIONS so that the posts you see in your newsfeed will be those of people who you connect with more. What that means as a makeup artist is that the more you connect and engage with your followers, the more your posts will appear in the newsfeed of your followers. I have tested this out myself with my business page over the last few months. As soon as I get comments on my posts, if I reply to those comments I tend to get more comments, and more “reach”.
- DO entertain and educate your followers. Add Value!! People don’t come onto social media to be sold to, so make sure that you are not just spamming people with links to your website or “special offers”. Try to offer value to your followers and potential clients, perhaps start a blog, or have weekly tips about how people may best apply their OWN makeup, or product reviews, and mix that in with images of your latest work and your special offers. Experts recommend an 80/20 mix, where 80% of your posts are informative, educational or entertaining, and 20% are “sales” type posts.
- DO use your hashtags wisely. Last year I attended a workshop with Kerwin Rae (look him up – his YouTube videos are great), on social media marketing. He has done a lot of testing of different strategies with Instagram. He then recommended using the full 30 hashtags (although I hear he is now suggesting only using 4-5), but NOT to put them in your image description, but rather in the first comment. Hashtags in the description can look spammy, and if you are sharing the image from Instagram to Facebook, you will get less engagement. My other research on #hashtagsin2018 has given differing results on the “best” number of hashtags to use, but however many you use, make sure your hashtags are relevant. You can use branded hashtags (e.g. #suemclaurinmakeup #smmakeup). Think about the search terms your prospective clients will use when they are looking for you, and remember to use your location in your hashtags too.
- DO use “Stories” to give your followers an insight into your life. I read somewhere recently that we have moved from the “Age of Celebrity” into the “Age of Reality” and people are interested in what REAL people are doing (just look at all the “reality” shows on our TV). Some people are reporting getting MORE views on their Insta-stories than on their actual profiles. Post your behind the scenes shots, makeup station set-ups, and use video to engage with your followers.
- DO post CONSISTENTLY. Try to post at least once a day to your Instagram feed, and several times a week to your Facebook business page. Space out your posts, so they are regular. If you do a great shoot, post an image a day, rather than posting 5 images one day and then nothing for the rest of the week.
- DON’T air your dirty laundry. Whether its personal or business, nobody needs to hear about your bad day, or the bridezilla you just worked with. Be aware that EVERY potential client could be viewing your social media profiles. I always search the personal profiles of people who request to assist me. Think very carefully about what you post, even when you think something is private and will only be seen by your friends, its possible for posts to be shared and that has the potential to be nasty for you.
- DON’T post about your religious or political views. If you are very opinionated, this can repel clients who don’t share your views. Just as you wouldn’t discuss your religious or political views with someone in your chair, keep it off your social media accounts too. Don’t get involved in the drama! Sometimes its better to just walk away… remember if you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all.
- DON’T be spammy. Constantly posting the same thing over and over comes across as needy and is annoying to your followers and potential clients. Remember to add value and engage with your audience.
- DON’T rely on too much automation. Those Instagram bots are so annoying!! Whether it is auto-commenting, auto-following (and unfollowing), auto-DM’ing, its usually really obvious its automated and this will turn off more potential clients than it may attract.
- DON’T get caught up in the numbers! Go for quality rather than quantity. You want followers who are genuinely interested in you and your business, and remember to engage with them. Don’t play the “follow and un-follow” game just to boost your numbers. Just because someone has thousands more followers than you, doesn’t mean she is a better makeup artist. Don’t compare yourself to other artists. Stay in your lane, play your game.
In conclusion, I hope these social media tips have been helpful. Incorporating them into your business can only help you grow your profile in the most productive way. This list is by no means exhaustive, we could talk about it all day! What other social media tips do you have? Share them in the comments below, or join the conversation on Facebook.