Hashtags were brought to life in 2007 when Chris Messina first used one. Since 2007, hashtags have become widely accepted and commonly used, bringing together like-minded individuals and creating online communities.
Even though hashtags are widely used today, many people, even those who manage social media accounts, can be unsure how they should be applying them to their marketing strategy. Today, the use of hashtags has evolved and grown, especially on Instagram, where hashtags are most widely used. Many people have even found success through hashtag strategies on Instagram. Sometimes, it can be difficult to know how to use hashtags on Instagram, so we’ve created a list of a few things you should consider when using hashtags in 2019.
Know Instagram’s Rules
In general, it’s important to know that Instagram is constantly changing, so you’ll need to make sure you always stay up-to-date. For example, Instagram recently implemented hashtags on Instagram Stories; you can now use up to 10 hashtags on an Instagram Story. For posts, Instagram limits users to 30 hashtags, and it won’t allow you to post more than that amount. Depending on your goals, you can implement a successful hashtag strategy if you stay up-to-date on the constantly changing world of social media.
Create branded hashtags
Inventing a custom hashtag for your business can help increase brand perception and help your followers become more engaged in your content. Custom hashtags give your followers a chance to become more involved in your brand.
For instance, Fab Food Chicago, a food and travel based account, encourages people to use the hashtag #fabfoodchicago for all of their food-related posts in Chicago. When people take photos of food at a restaurant, they can use the hashtag.
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Afterward, the account can search for their custom hashtag and repost the photos they are tagged in on their own social media. Branded hashtags can expand a follower’s experience by allowing them to help tell your brand’s story. As a result, others may see your branded hashtag in their feeds, which, in turn, may increase your brand’s social media presence.
One of the most important steps in using hashtags is researching them. It’s best to spend time researching hashtags so that you can find the best ones for your posts. Look at what types of hashtags your competitors use. You can employ Instagram’s search bar to look up different hashtags. When you do this, make sure you notice the volume of posts with the hashtag. You can also look at a specific hashtag’s “Top Posts” and tailor your content for that hashtag. Try to choose hashtags based on your goals for your accounts. After you select a hashtag for your post, check and see if there are any related hashtags that might also work for your post.
Include specific hashtags
Specific hashtags can help your posts perform better than ones that are general and unrelated to your brand. You can try using local hashtags, instead of general ones. For example, for a food-related post, instead of using #chicago, you could use #chicagofoodie. The more hashtags can relate to your posts, the better. If you include random hashtags that don’t connect to your post, then as a result, your post may not be as engaging or receive as many impressions.
Follow hashtags and engage with the community
On Instagram, you can follow hashtags that are related to your brand, business, or product. For example, if your business is located in Chicago, you can follow Chicago-related hashtags. This can give you an opportunity to engage in content that is similar to your own or give you new ideas for your own social media. After you follow a hashtag, you can engage with users in the feed. Engagement can take the form of commenting on posts, messaging accounts privately, or sharing posts on your Story. Engaging with other accounts will help your business become a part of a community on Instagram, and you may even accumulate more followers as a result.
Where to place hashtags
There are a few places that you can put your hashtags. One option you can utilize to conceal your hashtags is to put them in the first comment of your post. Many people choose to do this since other profiles will only be able to see the comment if they click on the comment specifically. That way, your caption isn’t clouded with hashtags.
You can also hide hashtags in your caption. Type a symbol like a punctuation mark or a dash and use it several times, pressing enter after each time you use it. This way, the hashtags are only seen if a user clicks “view more.” Either way, people generally won’t be able to see your hashtags on Instagram.
If you follow this advice about how to use hashtags, you’ll be able to benefit more from them. Remember to do your research so that you know how to appropriately use hashtags for each platform. Create a custom hashtag so that your followers can connect with your brand easier. You can follow and research specific hashtags so that you know exactly which ones you should use. Make sure that you try to include specific hashtags since they will be more relevant to your brand. Lastly, you can hide hashtags so that your followers won’t be bombarded with them. Doing all of these things can help you improve your hashtag strategy, and as a result, your social media and overall digital marketing will see a lot of benefits.
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