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PHOTO CREDIT: Above photo by John Rickman Photography, San Jose, California.

Marketing Your Belly Dance Business Via Social Media

 

 

By Amartia

 

 

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In this day and age, social media is king or queen. As a belly dancer, even if you have a web site, you need to be visible on social media. Sure, people use the web to search and find things, but even in casual conversation, it’s all about Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest.

Now, my personal policy is to at least have accounts on all of them and be moderately active. You don’t have to post to all of them at all times. Most of the platforms have realized that we don’t have all the time in the world and allow you to link posts.  For example, you can create a post for Instagram, then share it to Facebook and Twitter with two clicks.

In this article, I will attempt to break down some of the major platforms and why you should be on them.

Facebook

Let’s face it, it’s not going anywhere.  Almost everyone from elementary school kids, to businesses, to pets have a Facebook account. Your business is no different. The average age of the majority of Facebook users is 35-54. And, given that that age range is usually the one who makes a decent income with a percentage of that available for luxury items, you want them to see you. And yes, we are a luxury item.

PHOTO CREDIT: Photo by Stereovision Photography, makeup and hair by Christine Beck-Millan.

Business Page (Fan Page) or Regular?

This is an ongoing issue for many dancers. You want to be on Facebook and let your family know about dance events, but usually once you have friended your family, non-dance posts end up appearing on your timeline. You can create two accounts — one personal, and one public, but you can also create a "fan page".

A fan page allows you to put all your business related posts in one place. Your friends and family can still like that page and be aware of what you’re doing in the dance world, but it provides a nice separation. You need to have a regular Facebook account in order to have a fan page, but that account doesn't need to be public, nor do your friends have to be the only ones who like your page.

Another benefit of a Facebook page is that it allows you to keep track of the reach and engagement of your posts. It will also show you demographics so you know what ages, genders, etc. you are reaching and during what period of time.  It allows you to see if you are reaching anyone, and whom.

Twitter

There are many who do not like Twitter. Personally, I do. I like the fast pace and the short posts. It’s where I get the latest news. The average age for twitter is 18-29. It is an emerging market and a platform that should not be forgotten or put off to the side.

Twitter has an array of apps that allow you to schedule your posts (Tweet Deck, Crowd Fire, Hoot Suite) and it can also be linked to other social media accounts, so why not? Even if you only tweet once a day or a week, tweets are indexed by Google and can go a long way towards increasing your website views, especially if you include a link to your site when you post!

Amartia

Instagram

This is the latest and greatest platform. A lot of businesses are starting to jump onto the bandwagon. Currently, its age range is 18-29. In 5-10 years, those will be the people who are able to afford the luxury items. 

In addition to that, I have found that a lot of European dancers and agencies are on Instagram as opposed to other platforms. So, if you are planning to take your dance on the road, it would behoove you to connect with those people.  

Instagram offers a convenient way for users to see a group of photos at once without needng to go through an entire album. It also allows you to put those photos on Twitter and Facebook. Who doesn’t love making a collage and putting a filter on it? Instagram allows you to use filters even if your phone isn’t fancy enough to offer a collection of them.

PHOTO CREDIT: Photo by Stereovision Photography, makeup and hair by Christine Beck-Millan.

Pinterest

Last, but not least. I am personally not a fan of Pinterest, as I am not inherently crafty. However, if your target demographic is women who want to take classes, or you want to sell something during the holiday season, that is the place to be! As always, make sure you have at least an account there. 

Create boards that fit your brand and niche. Post photos of parties you have performed at, decorations, costuming. Post any ideas that someone planning an event or party might find and pin, and if they’re in your area, they may hire you!

Closing Thoughts

I know, I know, it’s a lot to do and keep track of. I myself was dragged to social media kicking and screaming by mentors and advisors but I have to admit, have reveled in it once I got there.  It really did increase the reach of my business and bring me opportunities that I might not have had otherwise.

I could go on and on, and ON about marketing, but this is a small snippet to get you started on the social media front. It is always a good idea to read blogs from social media gurus and marketers because trends are always changing, and Google is always updating and adjusting its algorithm. 

Your goal in marketing is to be seen and the best way to do that is market and tap into free (for the most part) platforms such as social media.

Amartia

 

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About the Author

This article was written by Amartia.

Amartia is a Baltimore native of Greek descent. She was involved in Greek Folk dancing from childhood to adulthood. She stumbled upon bellydancing class at a local gym and has never looked back! Bellydance appealed to her not only as an art form but a way to stay in shape. Hence one spectator commenting, “…massive melodic muscles of the Mediterranean aka killer abs...

Amartia is an award-winning bellydancer. She has traveled to compete all over the United States. She is the 2008 Jewel of the Nile and the first place winner for veil dance from Arabian Nights. More recently she was one of the 23 bellydancers chosen to compete in the first season of a reality web-show- Project bellydance! Amartia, Extravagent Entertainment in Maryland has also been featured in Fuse Magazine, written an article on Greek bellydance for Zaghareet, and was the July 2012 Bellydancer of the Month for Brandon’s Oasis.

Amartia also offers Greek translation services for dancers so if you’d like another Greek song translated, feel free to contact her! See amartiabellydance.com/lets-go-greek/greek-song-translation/

PHOTO CREDIT: Photo by Anton Marx.

Amartia

 

 

 

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