Instagram has become an essential platform for hairstylists to showcase their talent and grow their clientele. With over two billion active users, Instagram offers one of the best opportunities for hairstylists to market themselves, build a following, and showcase their work for free.
Whether you own a salon or suite, rent a chair, or you’re a commissioned stylist, one thing is true for every beauty professional: you can use social media to build your dream clientele. If you have the knowledge on how to build your brand cohesively and create high-quality content that matches, you’ll surely see those preferred clients flow into your chair as your social engagement increases.
But if you’re at a loss for how to get started, it always helps to get advice from the experts. We spoke to IL stylist, coach, MODERN SALON 100 alum and RockIt Studio owner Elyse Rox (@elyserox00) to get her best advice on how to make yourself noticeable and successful on Instagram.
On Personal Branding
Having had Instagram for a long time, there was a point where Rox realized her previous social media methods were not helping her grow any further.
When you look at Rox’s Instagram feed, you immediately notice the striking pink and purple, text-filled, eye-catching aesthetic that fills her grid. This look is Rox’s personal brand, matching that of her salon. It’s carefully curated and unified, making her grid visually pleasing.
“I have a certain style and certain color brand,” Rox explains. “I know that my salon is pink and purple, so I’m gonna make my posts pink and purple because I know it’ll go good with what’s in the background.” She also notes that the girly and industrial elements of her salon, like glittery floors and skull motifs, showcase her personality when they appear in her Instagram content. She loves all things girly and edgy, and she has become synonymous with that stand-out branding.
She doesn’t always stick to the same fonts, colors, or elements 100% of the time, but her page truly reflects who she is. “There’s only one thing that stays cohesive on my page,” says Rox, “and that’s me. Because I am my brand.”
On Coaching Courses
When starting to figure out what new content she could contribute to the stylist community, Rox reached out to her followers and fellow stylists, asking what their biggest struggles in the salon were and which topics they would like advice on.
“I was expecting requests like balayage and foiling,” says Rox, “but I ended up getting all this salon business stuff. I was like, ‘There are all these salon courses out there, why don’t you guys go take them?’ Obviously, [those courses] didn’t resonate with those people.”
So, she took it upon herself to create a new LifeStylist coaching course that would resonate with those wanting to master certain techniques and looking to build more career confidence.
In the LifeStylist course, Rox encompasses both life coaching and stylist coaching, hence the name. Whether it be tips on dealing with imposter syndrome, tough client situations, or how to set boundaries, she covers it all in this course in a way that other coaches don’t. Her goal is to help stylists practice mindfulness, self-worth, and self-care. Stylists who come to her for coaching love her realness, bluntness, and absolute refusal to sugarcoat when there’s an issue. Life’s too short to beat around the bush.
To get on the waitlist for Elyse Rox's LifeStylist coaching course, visit her website.
On Social Content
This “tell it like it is” style comes through strongly in Rox’s Instagram content as well. Much of it is created in Canva, an easy-to-use digital platform that encompasses all design needs, which she also provides lessons on in her courses. Being “in your face,” as Rox puts it, is her approach to content creation. “No one wants to watch boring TV,” she says. “Nobody’s gonna click on a post that’s boring.”
Your cover photo is your hook, she reminds us. For Rox, this often means including some big text on a topic that grips the viewer’s attention, along with a picture of herself posing and pointing. Including yourself and a visual representation of your personality within your posts is a surefire way to increase audience engagement, Rox says, because “People want to see you. I go to other people’s pages and I’m like, who are you? If I don’t see you, I can’t trust you.”
An easy way to get lots of content-ready pictures of yourself is to take a short video of yourself doing different poses, maybe with different outfits, Rox advises, and then take snapshots from that video. It’s a quick, easy, and fun way to get all the selfie assets you need.
Rox is launching a brand new course called Social Savvy Stylist on April 10th, 2023. If you want to up your social media game, get in on the action!
On Inspiration and Planning
Rox fills her feed with accounts about creating social content so that she’s constantly learning what’s trending, what’s grabbing people’s attention, and then uses that knowledge in her own posts. “YouTube has a plethora of knowledge, too,” she adds.
To plan out her posting schedule, Rox has created her signature Creative Content Calendar, which is available to use for free. She advises that how often you should post depends on your goals. If you’re fully booked and not looking to build out your clientele, you can post much less often than someone who is trying to draw in clients. Trying to build your brand warrants more posting. However, if you miss a day, don’t beat yourself up—social will still be there tomorrow. Conversely, you can always push posts back when there’s something special or trending that you need to slip in there.
“I don’t usually post on Saturday because everyone’s busy,” she adds. “But Sunday is always a good day to post.” Figuring out what time of day to post is also beneficial to your engagement levels.
And finally, when it comes to viewing other stylists’ content, don’t get too caught up in what they’re doing and worry more about what’s happening on your page, says Rox. It’s also okay to purge your feed of content that’s no longer serving you!
On Hiring Help
Now that Rox has amassed an admirable following on Instagram, she has an assistant to help with creating her social content. She’s a big advocate for delegating tasks to other people, whether it’s to take some things off your plate or to leverage someone else’s skills in something you’re not familiar with. There’s absolutely no shame in needing help with your marketing process, or any facet of your business, for that matter.
“Sometimes we need a little help in this world,” says Rox, “and if you don’t know how to do something, it’s better to pay someone else to do it rather than to stress yourself out. We’re the idea people, we’re the creators, and sometimes we don’t know how to do these technical things. And until you learn, the only thing those technical things are gonna do is cause major strife, and then we’re gonna give up.”
Rox recommends starting out by hiring help through convenient platforms like Fiverr or Upwork, being as specific as possible with how you want your content to look, and to carefully check over the work once it’s done to make sure it’s what you want and that it aligns with your brand.
It’s important to remember that you aren’t alone in your journey of marketing yourself or your business. You have support in the form of the salon community, stylist coaches, online tools, and platforms—all of which are just waiting to help you make your personal branding and content the best that it can be. Many resources are free, and some require an investment. But be sure to pour yourself into everything you do, everything you post and every design you create, and it’s sure to resonate with the people you want to connect with most.
Follow Elyse Rox on Instagram @elyserox00.
To check out available courses from Elyse Rox, visit her website at hairbyelyserox.com.
For reprint and licensing requests for this article, Click here.
Originally posted on Modern Salon