So you’ve launched your doula business! You’ve got business cards, a website, a logo, and of course you’re now on Instagram. The only problem is you have 5 followers and 4 of them are close family members. Where do you go from here?

Don’t worry, every doula has been there before. Everyone in the birth industry says that Instagram is a great place to build a community and engage with potential clients, and they’re right! But you’ll need a roadmap to get there. In today’s post we look at some of the successful community building strategies we’ve seen on Instagram and how you can use them.

Interact 1 on 1

This might seem a little counter intuitive. Isn’t the idea of social media to reach as broad of an audience as possible? To create that perfect tik tok dance, or incredible Instagram reel that leads to 1 million shares and all the followers you could ever want?

Well, yes and no. We hear a lot about people who became Instagram famous after their content “blew up.” And while that is POSSIBLE, it’s only a reality for 0.00001% of us online. For the vast majority of birth workers, we are going to grow our community one person at a time.

You can do this by searching hashtags or brands that are related to your work. Then you start interacting and commenting on posts for people who are already following people in our niche. It’s a terrific way to connect with people and show that there is a real person behind your handle. Of course it will take time, but the audience you build will be more authentic and connected to your purpose.


If you’re like me it may have taken a while for you to come around on hashtags. But make no mistake, they are the engine that helps drive social media content. Using hashtags can help Instagram algorithms identify your content and where to show it. It’s one of the most important ways to organically grow your following.

When trying to figure out which hashtags to use, look at other birth workers or influencers in your space. What are they using? How often do they use them? Create a separate list of all the hashtags you think are relevant and start using them regularly in your posts, stories, reels…etc

Find a Content Niche

It’s easy to just post things on Instagram. There will undoubtedly be thousands of birth and pregnancy related posts each day around the world. So how do you set yourself apart? The key is to find something different and UNIQUE to you. It could be that you see lots of birth affirmations and quotes related to pregnancy, how do you produce your own that have a unique spin?

For example, here at Doula School we see lots of fun comic strips across a variety of industries. But we had never seen one done specifically for doulas! We took that idea and ran with it, creating ‘Life of a Doula.’ It’s not a new idea, but it is one that’s unique to us. As a result those comic strips have been some of our most successful content posts.

Develop a Schedule

This is something you’ll see in EVERY social media blog, but it’s worth repeating. You absolutely need to develop a content schedule for your brand. That doesn’t mean you need to post every day; however, you need to post with some level of regularity.

Some birth workers find it overwhelming to plan content ahead while you’re juggling actual doula and birth work. Instead of being overly specific, we recommend you focus more on broad content buckets. For example, maybe this week you know you’re posting content related to clients. Next week it will be an affirmation. And the week after it will be something else. This way you have a rough schedule, but still have the flexibility to adapt and change.

Connect with Other Birth Workers

There can be a feeling when you’re starting out that other birth workers are your competition. We’re here to tell you that’s not the case! Your fellow birth workers can often be your biggest supporters as you grow your following and business. Take a look in your area and see if there are birth workers you can connect with. Maybe offer to buy them a coffee or start sharing and commenting on their content.

Many birth workers also have podcasts, newsletters, and blogs. Offer to contribute content to one of those! It’s often a win-win, as you help to get your brand out there, while the birth worker gets some much-needed content. You also never know how your virtual connections will evolve over time. Maybe you end up partnering or going into business with a new friend in the birth space.

We hope this blog can help you on your birth Instagram journey! If there are other ideas you’ve found successful we’d love to hear about them. Drop us a line on Instagram.