Good things don’t last, as the saying goes. Just recently, Facebook, the parent company of Instagram, said they were taking the image sharing platform in a different direction. Unfortunately for many practices who have just started to get the hang of using Instagram to boost their patient interaction, Facebook’s plans will most likely upend their content strategy. Read on to learn more about the changes coming to Instagram, and how your practice can make the most of them.
For almost 11 years, Instagram has been the premiere photo-sharing app. Boasting over 1 billion users worldwide, Instagram has gained popularity among optometrists in recent years as a way to show your patients the more human side of your business. But that’s all about to change.
On June 30th of this year, Adam Mosseri, Facebook’s head of Instagram, had this to say about the future of the service: “We’re no longer a photo-sharing app.”
Well, at least he’s blunt. What’s the reason for such a big pivot after over a decade of success? TikTok. Despite still maintaining its status as the dominant social media giant, Facebook has felt threatened lately by the explosive popularity of the interactive video-sharing app. TikTok allows users to build on viral trends by contributing their own videos alongside other popular clips for the ultimate user-engagement experience.
According to Mosseri, Instagram will continue undergoing a radical transformation to become a platform very similar to TikTok.
The Problem With TikTok
While the news of Instagram’s impending metamorphosis may be a cause for celebration among average users, marketers and businesses in every corner of the world are quietly gnashing their teeth.
TikTok continues to present a challenge for advertising, as evidenced by a 2020 study that found 74 percent of marketers had no plans to invest in TikTok initiatives. The problem lies in the app’s over-reliance on virality as a determining factor of popularity. But there’s no way to predict what will become viral and what won’t. S&P 500 superstars have spent millions trying – and failing – to get their content to go viral. Then there’s the issue of longevity. Viral trends, by their very nature, are short-lived. What’s popular today is passé tomorrow. So not only do you need to stay ahead of viral trends, you need to do it all the time, every day.
Finally, there’s the problem of what sort of content TikTok users actually consume. The platform is filled with short, flashy, raw and uncut video clips with catchy background music. Users crave an authentic experience free from the sterile, generic messaging of broad-stroke marketing. While companies like Walmart and Chipotle may be able to devote enough resources to create personalized organic experiences, how would a private optometry practice even begin to break through?
What Does this Mean for Optometry?
There’s no easy way to say this: Instagram may no longer be a social media platform you want to devote time to. While things are still in development, there are some things we can’t say for certain. But one thing that’s guaranteed is your content strategy for Instagram will have to be completely different. Even EyeCarePro is adapting our Instagram strategy as new changes surface.
Here are a few questions you can ask yourself to determine whether the new Instagram is right for you.
- Do I have the capabilities to make practice videos and other video content?
- Do I want to focus on making video content?
- Do I have the time and staff to devote to frequent videos?
- Which social media do my patients use most?
- Is focusing only on Facebook enough?
Every practice will be different. Only you can decide if the new Instagram is the right fit to meet your marketing needs.
Interested in keeping Instagram? Download EyeCarePro’s New Instagram Survival Guide here for tips and strategies on how to get the most from Instagram’s new direction..