Nailing Your Brand’s Online Presence: All You Need to Know About Social Media and Personal Branding

Are you a nail technician that wants to take their career to the next level? If you are, then rest assured that you’re in the right place. Here at HONA, we’ve recently had the pleasure of speaking with podcaster and entrepreneur, Abigail Clarke, and we’ve got the juicy details for you to sink your teeth (or, should we say, nails) into right here in this post. 

Whether you’ve been in the nail industry for years or you’ve just recently launched your nail business - there’s going to be something useful for you to take away from this post. From how to build the foundation of your brand’s social media strategy, all the way to various content ideas you can use to keep your audience engaged - Abigail’s covered all bases. 

So, without further ado, let’s jump right in and discover all of Abigail’s insider tips and tricks for growing your brand’s online presence with the power of social media. Watch the full recording below, or read on for the highlights.

What is a Social Media Strategy?

Before we jump any further into this guide, here is a brief outline of what a social media strategy is. By understanding clearly what a social media strategy is, you’re going to have a much clearer understanding of how to utilise one to your brand’s advantage.

A social media strategy is essentially a plan that clearly outlines your brand’s social media goals, the various tactics you are going to be using to help achieve them, as well as what metrics you are going to be using to track the success of the social media strategy over period of time. 

Confused? Don’t be. Now that we know what a social media strategy is, we’re now going to be explaining how to actually build one (with a little bit of help from Abigail’s expertise, of course!). This brings us to our next section. 

Building Your Social Media Strategy: Step-by-Step Instructions

Define Your Brand
In order to successfully grow your brand’s online presence, you’re going to need to make sure that you are clearly defining your brand. A key question for nail techs is will your brand be your business name or will you create a personal brand? Will you be showing your face and your own personality or creating a brand which focuses on your work? Either way, having a consistent brand image, tone and personality makes people more likely to connect and relate to your brand. It  also makes your content instantly recognisable in a busy social media feed. 
Define your audience

Next up, you’re going to need to identify your audience. In this instance, your audience means your potential and current clients. Truly understanding your audience will help you to create posts and content that perform well. If you have a business account on social media, you should be able to see some reporting in your analytics which will show you the ages, location and other key demographics of your current audience. Some other key questions to ask yourself are, what services/designs or trends am I doing a lot of, what are people coming to me for? See if you can see any patterns in your clients. You can also ask yourself, what’s important to my clients when they get their nails done with me, is it your beautiful designs, the products you use, the chats they have with you? What questions do I get asked alot? What issues do my clients have? Your answers to these questions will help you create a picture of who your audience is.

Set Clear Goals

Along with defining your brand and identifying your audience, you’ll need to set clear measurable goals for your social media platforms. This could be to increase engagement on your posts or  increase your following. It could also be to try and increase your conversion rate i.e. getting more bookings directly through social media. Another goal could be booking or style specific, such as get more bridal or group bookings. These kind of goals will influence the posts you make. It’s also worth considering if there are any gaps in your recent experience, you may think, I don’t get many pedicure bookings, for example, and want to post more pedicure content to encourage these kind of bookings.

Once you have your goals set, this will help you plan your content in a way which aligns with your clearly defined brand and is useful and engaging for your audience.

The Power of Content Pillars

One of the greatest ways you can help to boost your brand’s online presence is by harnessing the power of content pillars. 

Abigail’s Top Tip: Content pillars are something that many people find themselves struggling with” Abigail says, and we certainly agree. If you’re in need of some inspiration to get started and want to schedule high-performing content that’s going to stand a good chance of resonating with your audience - Abigail recommends researching the trending content that your competitors are using. 

From there, you’ll be able to use the content inspiration that you have discovered to come up with content ideas for your own brand. Clever or what? This is a great tip for those just starting out on social media, or for those who might be pressed for time and want to be able to create great content in a pinch.

Speaking of content ideas, wondering how to create impactful content that will be able to not only boost your brand’s online presence but also generate some sales? Scroll down to our next section to discover. 

Creating Impactful Content

Don’t post without purpose” Abigail tells us. If you’re someone that finds themselves feeling a little lost when it comes to creating content for your social media pages, know that you’re not alone. While it might seem complicated, creating content that is impactful and engaging is easier than you might think. Here’s how:

Level up with Canva: One of the easiest ways to create content that is genuinely impactful is with Canva. It’s an online graphics tool ideal for creating social media content, and the best part? There’s a variety of different packages for you to choose from according to your business needs, as well as a variety of different templates.

Consistently capture various types of content: It might sound a little counterproductive, but another great way that you will be able to create impactful content is to, quite literally,  capture everything you feel is relevant to your brand. Whether it be a new nail art design you’re really proud of or a ‘Behind the Scenes’ glimpse into your brand’s day-to-day runnings - you’ll find that you will be able to leverage the content you capture and boost your online presence.

Trends don’t always equal success: Now, this one is very important to note. While trends can be a great way to boost engagement with your current audience (and potentially  even reach new clients) trends might not always translate to your followers in the intended way. Abigail says, “If you are jumping on trends everyone is doing you’re never going to stand out.” The solution? Use trends sparingly and don’t be afraid to create your own.

Maintain Balance: It’s also important to maintain a good balance of useful or inspirational content vs promotional posts. Abigail suggests an 80/20 split. So the majority of the time you will be posting useful or creative posts online, and the other 20 percent of the time you can promote your services or products.

 Inspirational Content Ideas:

  • Don’t be afraid to get vulnerable with your followers: *quote

  • Share motivational quotes

  • Display your recent nail art creations

  • Provide niche inspiration

Aspirational Content Ideas:

  • Share your best nail art designs

  • Create celebrity inspired content

  • Jump on nail trends

  • Special occasion nail art

  • Showcase guest features

Educational Content Ideas

  • Nail Care Tips

  • Technique demos

  • Product insights

  • Problems solving content

Now, even though it’s important to make sure that you’re creating great content, it’s important to note that this is just one piece of the puzzle. Along with making sure that you’re creating inspirational, aspirational and educational content - you’re also going to need to make sure that you’re investing time in nurturing your community, too. This brings us to our next point.

Building Your Community: Engaging With Your Audience

Nurturing your community and building your brand’s online social media presence go hand in hand. Here are some of the simplest ways to build your community through taking the time to engage with your audience:

  • Go above and beyond: Putting in the effort to engage in conversations with your audience, asking them the relevant follow-up questions and showing a genuine interest in the things that your followers are saying will be invaluable to your online presence. You should make sure that you are taking the time to read through your followers’ comments each day and providing tailored responses. This will show your community that you care about what they have to say.

  • Hold competitions that recreate your work: A clever way that you can engage with your audience while simultaneously boosting your brand is by holding competitions that encourage your audience to recreate your personal style of work and credit you at the same time. 

  • Provide a feeling of exclusivity: Last but certainly not least, a surefire way to engage with your community is to provide your audience with a feeling of exclusivity. This can be achieved by offering discounts, early access to new services and sneak peeks to members of your community that are the most engaged with your social media pages.

The Basics of Building an Effective Hashtag Strategy

While it’s safe to say that hashtags might not be as prevalent as they once were, that doesn’t mean that they don’t carry impact. In fact, if you want to make sure that you are boosting your brand’s social media presence to the best that it can be, you’re going to want to make sure that you are utilising a hashtag strategy. 

Let’s explore some of the best ways that you can do this below:

  • Use a variety of hashtags: For maximum exposure, you’re going to want to make sure that you are using a variety of different hashtags. This includes generalised hashtags, branded hashtags and niche hashtags. Abigail also recommends that you test out a variety of localised hashtags, as well as use location tags to help increase the chances of getting client leads in your area.

  • Discover the hashtags your competitors are using: You should also make sure that you are researching your competitors (as well as industry leaders) to see what hashtags they’re successfully using. You will then be able to compile a list of hashtags that might be relevant for your personal brand usage. 

  • Create a hashtag strategy for every platform you use: While one set of hashtags might perform well on one platform, that doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s going to perform just as well on another. That being said, you should make sure that you’re developing a unique hashtag strategy for each individual social media platform you use.

Abigail’s Top Tip: Abigail recommends regularly refreshing your hashtag set in order to stay relevant to the changing trends within the nail industry, while also ensuring that you don’t appear ‘spammy’ to your followers.

How to Measure Your Success and Not Give Up

As we’ve mentioned at the beginning of this post, one of the key elements of a social media strategy is metrics you use to actually measure it. Many people can find this aspect of the social media strategy confusing, but Abigail has broken the process down into three simple steps you can find outlined below:

  • Set yourself clear and measurable goals: Similar to creating impactful content, when it comes to measuring your social media strategy’s success - the key is to not overthink it! That being said, Abigail recommends that you set clear yet simple goals for yourself to keep track of, such as follower growth, engagement rate or even the amount of booking traffic you are able to make from social media. 

  • Analyse your top performing posts: Abigail also recommends that you analyse your top performing posts, as this will help you to understand what resonates with your audience the most. Not only that, but you will be able to emulate the elements of your top-performing posts for future content that you create. 

  • Embrace a growth mindset: When building your brand’s online presence, it’s only natural to experience some setbacks along the way. According to Abigail, the key to overcoming feelings of disappointment is to embrace a growth mindset. This consists of treating failures as opportunities to grow as well as refining your current social media strategy based on data-driven insights.  

Wrapping Up: It’s Time to Start Strategising! 

There you have it! You’ve made it to the end of the guide. We hope that we’ve now been able to give you a clear understanding of all the different ways that you can begin building your brand’s online presence. Now, all that’s left is for you to go ahead and begin putting all that we’ve spoken about into practice! Ready to get strategising? Armed with all of Abigail’s expert advice, we’re sure that you’ll see organic growth in no time at all. Thanks for reading. 


How do you take social media-worthy pictures?

Believe it or not, capturing imagery worthy of gracing your audience’s social media feeds is way easier than you might think. In fact, according to Abigail, a foolproof way to get imagery is to set your phone camera’s settings to the ‘grid’ feature. From there, you’ll be able to take images that are centralised, professional and perfect for showcasing your work  - regardless of whether you’re a pro photographer or a total beginner. 

How many times should you post on Instagram a week?

Ideally, you’re going to want to make sure that you are posting on your grid at least 3-5 times a week. If possible, we also recommend that you try and post engaging stories around 1-2 times a day. 

Abigail’s Top Tip: To help boost engagement on your Instagram story, post a poll! By encouraging your followers to answer a question, not only will this help to raise the chances of your audience interacting with your content, but you’ll be doing so with minimal effort on your end. 

Do giveaways actually work?

So long as part of the requirements for entering the giveaway are to follow and share your page, giveaways are a sure way to expand your reach beyond your existing following and grow it. People love entering giveaways. To boost your giveaway further, you can put a small bit of budget into promoting it through paid ads on social media. It’s really easy to do if you have a business account and you can also cap the spend so there is no risk of going over your budget. If you are going to use paid ads, it’s important to have fully outlined your audience as this will help you target your paid ads to the right people. 

Join our HONA Community for the next Business Mastery Session

We will be going live with lots of different business mastery experts in the coming months, make sure you don’t miss our next session on Monday 25th September 2023. We will be learning from Chantelle Vermont, from Clawgasmic, who will be discussing creative imagery and how to get the best results with your visual content and posts on social media. Business Mastery sessions are exclusively for members of the HONA community, so make sure you’ve joined a few days before so you don’t miss a thing!

Join The HONA Community