Looking for tips for Instagram and wondering if using hashtags actually works?
Absolutely. In fact, using hashtags can expand your reach on Instagram by over 10%.
With the right strategy, hashtags are a powerful tool to help you reach the right audience. Instagrams goal is for you to connect with like-minded people and build relationships. Hashtags are one of many tools they provide you to exactly that.
What you may not know is if you don’t ‘follow the rules’, using hashtags can hinder your reach, or even have your account blocked.
Before we dive into the right way to use hashtags, know that today’s free download is a checklist of everything I’m about to share with you. No need to write down notes, just download the checklist to help you use hashtags in the most efficient way.
1. Research on Instagram
It is important to research hashtags instead of guessing what you should use. The best way to research hashtags is directly on Instagram in the explore (search) page.
Start typing in a general term for your industry and select the ‘tags’ tag. Here you can select the hashtag to see if it’s the right one for you. Plus it will give you related tags to check out.
Another way to research hashtags is to check what tags your ideal audience is using that you already follow.
2. Use Hashtags Between 300k-800k
The majority of the hashtags you use should have between 300k-800k posts. Anything above that is extremely popular and you risk having your posts buried quickly and not get noticed.
3. Use Local Hashtags
This is important for those offering services and/or products to a specific area. You want to be known as the leader in your city/town/state so sprinkle in a few local hashtags in each post so customers can find your business.
Example: #tampabrandphotographer and #tampaphotographer are a couple that I personally use.
4. Create Your Own
Creating your own hashtag is a great way to make your current clients feel like they are a part of something big. Get creative on a tag and have your clients use it anytime they post about you or the service/product they received from you.
5. Make Lists
Now that you’ve done your research on what hashtags to use and have created your own personal hashtag, it’s time to make shortlists of these tags where you can access them easily.
I keep mine in Notes on my Apple products so I can access them from my laptop or phone. This also makes it easy to update my list anytime, anywhere.
Categorize each list so they are easy to find and clump 5-8 tags into groups that are related. Want to know why? Keep reading:
6. Mix The Order
When you use the same list of hashtags over and over again, Instagram can think you are a bot. When you mix up the hashtags you are using in a different order nearly every post, the last thing Instagram will think is that you are a bot. This is why making small groupings of 5-8 hashtags on your list comes in handy.
7. Don’t Use The Same Ones Over and Over
You may be thinking, Kimberly, there are only so many hashtags I can use. NOT TRUE. Are you posting the same exact thing every single day? If you answered yes, we need to chat!
Use hashtags that are related to your photo and your content…which should be different every day…which is why this is easier to do than you think. And also leads me to #8…
8. Include Hashtags That Are Relevant To Your Photo and Caption
Use hashtags that are describing your photo and your text. This does a number of things:
- One, it makes your hashtags relevant to your content.
- Two, it provides you with different hashtags to use on each post so you aren’t using the same old ones over and over (did you read #7?).
- Third, it helps you reach more people.
- Fourth, it makes you more relatable.
Not everyone is looking for your product or service every day. When you sell every day, you’ll lose followers. Sorry boo, just the way it is.
People want to get to know the person behind the brand, so let them get to know you. Share your hobbies, your likes, your fur babies, and use hashtags that describe what those items are and what your photo is actually of.
Example: If you post a photo about your rescue dog like my sweet Bogey, then use hashtags like #rescuedogs, #dogfamily, and related dog tags PLUS others that match your content. Follow me on Instagram @kimberlysromano to see this post and others for more examples! (and to just follow along with the fun and get more free marketing tips.) 😉
9. Use On Every Post
It’s that simple. When you use hashtags on your post, you’ll average 12.6% more engagement than on posts that you don’t. Crazy huh?
10. Use 30 On Each Post
Instagram gives you up to 30 hashtags on each post…so use them! The more hashtags you use, the larger reach you’ll receive. And isn’t that the name of this game?
Also, use hashtags in your Instagram stories for even more reach.
10 Instagram Hashtag Tips – RECAP
- Research on Instagram
- Use hashtags between 300K-800K
- Use local hashtags
- Create your own
- Make a list of your hashtags
- Mix the order of your hashtags from post to post
- Don’t use the same ones over and over
- Use hashtags that are relevant to your photo and caption
- Use on every post
- Use all 30 hashtags on every post
There you have it friend. 10 of my best hashtag tips to help you optimize your posts reach and connect with your target audience.
If you are looking for more ways to research hashtags and make posting your content easier, I’d love to suggest trying Tailwind. I personally use it to schedule out my posts weekly which saves me a ton of time. Tailwind also allows me to see what my feed will look like before posting, provides me with hashtags suggestions based on my content (hello #8!) and so much more. Try it free for two weeks by clicking here and tell me what you think!
If you found this post helpful, may I suggest checking out these related posts!
- Keys To A Thriving Small Business
- How To Create Valuable Marketing On Social Media
- How To Improve Your Website
- 5 Benefits To Product Photography
- How You Can Benefit From Personal Brand Photos
Be sure to join my FREE Facebook Community filled with small business owners just like you getting free marketing advice!
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