There is a lot of competition on Instagram these days. There are 25 million business profiles currently active on the social network. And with everyone looking to get a piece of the action, it can be hard to stand out from the crowd. That’s where hashtags help.

A hashtag is a keyword or phrase with a hash sign (#) in front that enables your content to stand out from the 95 million photos and videos uploaded each day. Including hashtags in your post, helps the Instagram algorithm index it for a search that makes it discoverable to everyone; not only the followers on your profile. So, if you’re not using hashtags, it’s time to start.

But to use hashtags successfully is another matter. To help you – here is a short guide on how to use hashtags properly to access their potential and maximize the effect of your campaigns on Instagram.

Different Types of Hashtags

There are three hashtags families available to you on Instagram. Your brand should use all three to engage with as many users as possible for maximum impact of each post. Those three hashtag types are:

Content hashtags: generic hashtags related to your content, product, service, industry or field of expertise. This type of hashtag should connect back to your content and brand in a natural way.

Trending hashtags: popular hashtags used by millions of people associated with a specific topic. This type of hashtag needs to be relevant to the subject and original to add new value to the conversation.

Branded hashtags: original hashtags created by you and unique to your brand. This type of hashtag is usually very brand-specific and associated with your company, campaign, event, promotion or culture.

How to Use Hashtags?

Creating hashtags is simple. All you need to do is insert the ‘#’ symbol in front of the word or phrase you want to use in your post. You probably know this from personal use. But there are some tips when using it for business:

Less is more: keep your hashtags short. Don’t use long, bulky hashtags. When using phrases, keep them under five words in length or abbreviate them. #NobodyWantsToSeeThisInYourPost Unless…you are trying to make a statement or a funny comment.. 😎

Don’t abuse hashtags: Avoid using hashtags word per word in your post description. #This #doesnt #do #anything #good #for #your #brand!

Balance out your hashtags: brands frequently use generic, content hashtags. Some terms are overused and don’t distinguish posts successfully. At the same time, particular hashtags don’t generate the right volume amount and interest to reach enough people.

Instead, create balance. Either use both generic and specific hashtags in the same post, or content hashtags with medium volume.

How Many Hashtags Should You Use?

Using a high number of hashtags produces higher engagement. However, there is a limit. Marketers agree that you should use around 10 -12 hashtags per post as not to lose engagement.

Where to Place Your Hashtags?

The best practice is to place hashtags at the end of the description on your post. It makes the post more organized and your caption more readable. But if you want to separate your hashtags from the caption, place them in the comment section.

How to Find the Best Hashtags for Your Post?

This is simple. All you have to do is go to the search box and type in keywords or phrases to learn their usage volume (the number at the bottom of the search term.)  Also, find unique hashtags that you want your followers from. Example, If you market homes in florida near golf courses, your audience may be from the North East that like to golf.  So think about where those north east golfers attention is to draw them in with your #hashtags.

Get Professional Help

Want to start using hashtags to maximize the effectiveness of your campaigns on Instagram? Why not ask for help? Here at Spark Tank Media, we Coach our clients on both Social and Sales Marketing strategies to optimize your efforts and generate more revenue, bring in more business and increase your bottom line. If you want to know how we plan to do that, please contact us and schedule a consultation.

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