When your patients are looking for the best spa treatments, they head to Instagram to check out photo evidence of the end results. Your clinic needs to stand out, and Instagram stories help you do just that. However, Instagram stories are a little different than simply uploading photos and videos to your “feed.” Instagram Stories are unique because you can post as many as you like without getting “penalized.” Stories only last for 24 hours, so you have to make this fickle feature count. From highlighting your monthly specials to live-streaming your latest skincare product launches, here are 15 ways to put Instagram Stories to work for you:

1. Run polls and do a live Q & A

A poll or Q & A is a great way to encourage instant engagement and interaction. With Instagram’s release of the questions sticker last year, the opportunitis are endless. Get direct feedback from your customers on certain products they use or probe them on new services you could be offering. It’s a great market resesarch tool!

2. Live stream events

Your followers (and potential clients) want to see exactly what procedures look like, so live streaming a microneedling session or laser skin resurfacing procedure is a great way to generate interest, new appointments, and educate your followers about various procedures.

Pro tip: Live streaming events should be relatively short, attention spans are limited on social media. Offer fun, short and engaging content and always try to respond to comments from viewers on the live stream.

3. Doctor and patient interviews

If someone is curious about Dermalinfusion, checking out an interview is a great way for them to learn more. Doctors and patients each have unique insight and can give viewers a well-rounded idea of what to expect. Think of it as a trailer for that consultation you’re about to book!

4. Don’t get too fancy

Did you know a video from a handheld phone has a higher conversion rate than professional-looking clips? A “conversion rate” is the number of people who book an appointment after watching the video. Your customers are smart, and they know an advertisement when they see one. Handheld, non-pro footage looks natural and more trustworthy, so leave the professional production for your website or YouTube.

5. Capture short videos of treatments

When you do make a video of a procedure, keep some of them short and sweet. Show a time-lapse with only key moments or use slow motion. Changing things up makes video content quick and easy to enjoy. Time is precious, and your followers just want to check out the “money shots” like a close-up of your tools and what the treatment actually looks like.

6. Before and after photos or videos

You already know before and after shots are gold. They show off your skills, your tools, and the results clients can expect.

7. Host interactive games and quizzes

It’s all about engagement, and your followers want to get involved. These types of posts are great when linked to holidays, product launches, and monthly specials. For instance, October is Eczema Awareness Month and prime time to quiz your followers to find out just how much they know about this common skin condition.

8. Announce monthly specials with a link to your site

Help your followers explore new treatments and save money in the process by featuring specials in your stories with a link to help them easily learn more and book their appointment.

9. Create a branded hashtag

Get creative and hashtag it up. Not only are branded hashtags fun, but they also let you see how many people use it. Aim for a branded hashtag in 80 percent of your posts for a guaranteed #skinwin.

10. Save and organize stories in your highlights

Have you tried out the Instagram highlight feature yet? You can easily categorize your stories so your audience can directly check out the content they’re most interested in.

11. Customize highlight buttons so you’re always on brand

Not only do highlights make it easy to sort your content, but highlight buttons can also be customized. This makes it a lot easier for your audience to navigate on mobile devices.

12. Story advertisements

Story ads produce 10 times more traffic than Facebook and lead to 4 times more conversions. Sure, the cost is a little higher than Facebook, but with figures like these, it’s well worth it.

13. Invite customers to read new posts via Stories

Thanks to the ephemeral nature of Stories, they’re a great tool to encourage your audience to explore your other posts or blog. Tie everything together so your audience never has to seek out your content.

14. Contests and online event partners

Everyone loves a contest, and Stories are a great way to spread the word. You can also team up with non-competing brands to rev up engagement in your local community. That hair salon next door or nail boutique up the street might be just the collaborator you’ve been looking for.

Let Avid Manage Your Instagram Success

15. Don’t do it alone

If this sounds like a lot of work, well, it is! But don’t worry. Avid is here to help and can manage your Instagram Program so that you can focus on giving your clients the gorgeous skin they deserve. Learn more about our Social Media Marketing and Paid Advertising programs for Social Media today.