Hashtags are really comprehensive and useful tools, but only when they are used appropriately. They help people keep ahead of trending things, and they also assist in developing a community for people who are interested in similar topics.
You can make a post about fashion and use a popular hashtag under fashion or accessories.
Anybody that really has an interest in fashion or accessories would be able to see your post, like it quickly, and even comment on it without having to follow you. This actually helps to give your post more engagement.
When you use Instagram hashtags correctly, it can help you grow your engagement, get more reach, and find more followers.
If you want to maximize the full potential of hashtags, you have to be very particular about when you use hashtags and which ones you use.
Typically, people think it is better to use the hashtags that are very popular on Instagram, but this is not true at all. The only reason hashtags are popular is that they have been used many times by several accounts on Instagram.
It would actually be harder to find a post in the sea of posts located under this type of hashtag.
Instead, it is better to use lesser-known hashtags that fit into your niche. This way, you would attract people who are genuinely interested in the field of what you post, and they would definitely be engaged in your posts.
So how can you find the best Instagram hashtags for your account? The best way to do this would be to observe and check out what Instagram hashtags that the people in your field of specialization are using.
This is actually very important. You need to know the hashtags your prospective audiences are most likely to search, and you need to know the hashtags your competitors and those who have gone far in the industry are using.
Using hashtags really helps to be very specific and focus on your own niche because there would definitely be more interactions based on your niche. For instance, if you make healthy cooking videos, it would be far helpful if instead of just tagging your posts with #chefsofig, you used #cleaneating.
This would automatically narrow your audience to those who genuinely have an interest in healthy foods, so this type of person would naturally have more interest in your videos than someone who just wants to eat steak.
- Research your audience.
- Do research on your competitors.
- Research your current Industry leaders.
- Put in the effort to find related hashtags.
- Use the right tool
Research your Audience
One of the best ways to get useful feedback when using hashtags is to examine your prospective audience. You would be able to use the knowledge of what your audience is most likely to search for to determine what hashtags you are meant to use.
Find out the hashtags your audience uses on their own posts and see which of these hashtags you can incorporate into your own posts.
The principal aim of researching your audience is to be able to find a point at which the hashtags you would use and the hashtags your audience uses would merge.
Avoid using random hashtags that actually have nothing to do with your prospective audience. If you use random hashtags, you would not be able to grow your reach correctly.
Research your Competitors
Making research on your competitors is also almost as important as doing research on your audience. You can quickly get useful hashtag inspiration by checking out the hashtags major competition brands in your niche are using.
This gives you the opportunity to see how your immediate competitors have maximized their hashtags to grow their accounts.
You could easily pick up a few hashtags from their content, and it would give you a better view as to how you can further direct your content. Searching for brands with similar content, targeted audience, and products offers you the opportunity to make an in-depth analysis of their strategy, improve on it and inculcate it into your system, thereby giving you maximum results.
You would need to learn to do an in-depth study into your competitors’ best performing posts and check out the hashtags that could also be applicable to your content for future posts.
Research on your Industry Leaders
Another good way to find hashtags that would be relevant to your content is to follow Instagram influencers that have the same or even similar audience as yours. You need to discover some specific influencers that relate to your niche, who already have the attention of the type of audience you are aiming for.
When you finally get these influencers, you would have to study the kind of hashtags they use on their posts and learn from them. This method would help you draw the attention of followers who would be genuinely interested in your posts.
You should put in the effort to find related hashtags: You have to try your best to find hashtags that relate to your niche. You must also put in the effort to find hashtags that are trendy but not too populated that can still fit into your niche. To find related hashtags, you would have to:
- Type the preferred hashtag into your Instagram search bar.
- Select tags from the dropdown menu.
You would be able to see all of the top hashtags that are closely related to the hashtag you are using. It would reveal additional ways to reach, monitor, and engage with your Instagram community.
There is also room for you to scroll through posts that contain any hashtag you are already having success with. You should be very observant if you notice any other common hashtags that you could include in your future posts so that you can write them down.
Using the Right Hashtag Research Tool
Getting the best hashtag is possible without any tool, however, it’s never an easy job to achieve and it’s time-consuming. To save yourself all of these, you can simply get the right tool and get the job done more quickly and efficiently.
Here at Gramto, we offer the best hashtag research and competitor analysis tool for absolutely free with all of our plans. With this tool, all you need is to key in your keyword and you’ll gain access to the metrics of millions of hashtag suggestions which you can easily copy to your scheduling app.
There are so many hashtag research tool in the market which you can also make use of and they include;
The best Instagram strategy would not aim just to reach more followers; instead, the aim would be to gain the right followers- people who would genuinely be interested in the content you have to offer and that would readily engage and relate with your posts.
If you want to optimize your Instagram hashtags so you can reach your target market faster and also get more engagement on your post, then you need to;
Review your Instagram Hashtag Analytics
It is always a great practice to go over the performance of the hashtags you have used in the past because this can be a major deciding factor on whether or not you would use such hashtag again.
If a hashtag performed wonderfully, then you should definitely use such hashtags more often, but if it did not help your reach or engagement, you should stay clear of such hashtags. Instagram has some analytic tools that could help to give insight into this type of information.
Attempt to get into the Top Results for a Hashtag
Any time you search for a hashtag on Instagram, there would definitely be posts that are classified in the “Top Posts” section at the top of the results page.
Your main aim should be trying to get to that top post section. If you are able to get into that section, it would be very easy for your account to get discovered by new users.
So how can your post get into the top post section? This would depend on how much engagement your post gets and how quickly your post gets that engagement. The Instagram algorithm identifies posts that have these two attributes as high-quality posts and thus keeps them in the top spot.
Add your branded hashtag to your profile
Since the time a recent update was made, it is now possible to add clickable hashtags and even usernames to your Instagram profile.
The best thing about this update is the fact that it makes your profile very functional, in the sense that you can use the hashtags for everything you deem fit, ranging from promoting your Instagram community to emphasizing your branded content to announcing Instagram campaigns.
You can really do a lot with hashtags. Basically, all you have to do is to add a “#” symbol before any word in your profile, and it would immediately become a clickable link that would lead prospective followers to that particular hashtag.
Post your hashtag in the first comment
Typically, the norm is to add hashtags to posts, but in the real sense, too many hashtags in your captions can end up making your posts look very unpresentable or even spammy.
To prevent this, you can post all the hashtags you want to use in the comment section without having to comprise any of the engagements you would get. It also remains really obvious as long as your hashtags are the first comment on the post.
Encourage your audience to follow your branded hashtag
There was a significant update on Instagram that gave users the ability to follow unique hashtags. Any word that has been used as a hashtag can be followed just the same way you would follow a profile.
This meant it was relatively easy to catch up on various topics and even communities of interest just by following the hashtag of choice. To follow a hashtag is quite the same as following a regular account. Any post that falls under that hashtag would show in your feed immediately it is posted.
When you find a particular hashtag you want to follow, open the hashtag page and click on the follow button. You can always unfollow the hashtag if you are no more interested in that hashtag.
Organize Hashtag-Based Campaigns and Promotions
Contests that are structured around user-generated content (UGC) are very popular because they are fun and popular and great for driving engagement and reaching a new audience.
The simplest way to get user-generated content is by encouraging your audience to tag any relevant content with your branded hashtag. You can imagine this as a sort of filing system that everyone interested in your community can use to collate content.
For instance, if you want to host a contest, you can create a unique branded hashtag that your followers can use to post their submissions for the contest. This way, all the content under the contest would be collated in one place.
You might be wondering what banned hashtags are all about. Well, they are basically hashtags that get banned because some users have been them under posts that contain inappropriate content.
The moment a particular tag has too many inappropriate posts added under it, it could get banned. Obviously, there are some words one would expect to banned because of the meaning they connote, but even basic everyday words can be banned. You just have to understand it is not about the words as much as it is about the posts under those words.
This is why it is very important when selecting hashtags to use with your posts; you must have made sure you researched each and every hashtag you want to use correctly. If you use banned hashtags on your posts, it can lead to Instagram shadowbanning your posts.
If you want to be sure whether a hashtag has been banned or not, all you have to do is use the search bar to search for the hashtag. Once you have selected the hashtag from the search results, then check the Recent tab.
If the hashtag has been banned, you will get a message that would tell you the hashtag posts have been hidden because the community reported some of the content that did not meet their guidelines.
It is definitely good practice to always look up a new hashtag before you use it. And the hashtags you are already using frequently also need to be checked. The status of these hashtags could change at any time, so it is better to be proactive to avoid stories that touch. If you are forgetful, you could decide to keep a list of hashtags that have been banned that still relate to your content, so you would never mistakenly use them.
The fact is that you can use Instagram hashtags as often as you want. You can use it when you are about to publish your regular posts, you can use it when you are about to share a story, or as I have said in the article, you could use it in your Instagram bio. If your aim is to reach as many people as possible, then you should definitely make it a habit to use hashtags.
Even if you are organizing a program or a contest or even a protest, hashtags would definitely help to get the word out to more people.
Yes, there is definitely a stated maximum number a user can use per post when it comes to hashtags. The highest number of hashtags you can use per post is thirty, and for hashtags, this is quite a lot.
The amount of hashtags you are meant to use within this maximum number is totally based on personal preferences. As long as you are not exceeding thirty, you can use any amount of hashtags you want per post.
You just have to find out what works best for you and then go with the flow. That is why Instagram strategies are very important, so you can pick what actually gives your account the best results.
What specific hashtag should you use?
The key to using hashtags is to realize that the narrower the range of the hashtag, the more benefit it would procure for the account. So anytime you are using a hashtag, try to be as specific as you can.
Look for hashtags that specify what exactly you offer and indulge in them. The more consistent you are with posting under these particular tags, the more your posts would be a majority when these tags are looked up.
Avoid generalizations and broad tags because those types of tags will give you little to no benefit. These general tags only work for accounts that have already found their footing, and they have other means of drawing in followers. If your primary strategy to gain more followers is by using hashtags, then you should stay away from general tags.
How do you search for a Hashtag?
If you want to search for any hashtag, you would need to;
- Click on the search bar in your Instagram application.
- Choose the ‘Tags’ option that is provided under the bar.
- And then, enter the hashtag of your choice, making sure you use a “#” sign.
Once you do this, you would see a lot of posts that have been linked with that particular hashtag you searched for. This way, you can just search through and pick out the post you actually had in mind. But you must keep in mind that this process might not be so easy if the tag you are searching through is a competitive or broad tag.
You might need to really slow down and take your time. If the post you are searching for was just recently published and the hashtag is not a very popular one, your search might be less complicated.
The fact is that hashtags do not have to be visible for them to function correctly. Whether they are visible or not is entirely a matter of personal preference and nothing more.
To make hashtags visible, you would have to post them in your caption, while to hide their visibility to an extent, you would have to post them in the comment section.
When you post hashtags in the comment section, it does not mean they are automatically invisible, but they would not be easily seen unless the user opens the comment section and checks for the hashtags.
If you want to give your caption a nice aesthetic, you could leave gaps between each line of hashtags so that everything does not end up looking bulky and clumsy.