Private practices may need to rethink their marketing tactics based on Instagram’s content restrictions and the COVID-19 environment.
Instagram is making good on their plans to restrict or remove content about weight loss products and types of cosmetic surgery on their app.
The company started its initiative by removing its story filters that are used to make the user look like they’ve had aesthetic procedures.
In response to calls for the social media giant to distance itself from these filters creating augmented facial features and reports of body dysmorphia stemming from the app, it is restricting its users under the age of 18 from seeing posts promoting weight loss and cosmetic surgery.
The company will remove posts that make miraculous claims about diet and weight loss products, along with posts linked to commercial offers such as those that include discount codes.
But what does that mean for promoting your practice?
The American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery (AAFPRS) has seven tips on how to stay in the safe zone in the new Instagram:
1. Make sure every person on your team is aware of the new road rules for posting. This is especially important if you routinely work with influencers.
2. Make sure your posts are professional, educational and provide a realistic idea of what a procedure looks and feels like, and what a patient may look like afterward.
3. Bridge any potential deficit in traffic by hosting in-office events for media, new patients or VIPs.Offer discounts and swag to attendees.
4. Emphasize reviews and testimonials on your website as today’s potential patients want to hear about your practice and prowess from “real” patients.
5. Don’t overlook traditional marketing tactics such as email marketing. Make sure your list is up-to-date and your dissemination schedule is regular.
6. Get involved with fundraisers, health fairs, skin cancer screenings, and charity events in your community. These are great ways to get your name out there.
7. Consider reaching out to your media contact list with tips or scoops on new approvals or research.
These new guidelines, along with the COVID-19 reality, have left the aesthetic specialty no choice but to rethink the best plan of action for marketing their practice.