Let’s talk about #hashtags
Snapping pictures directly in the Instagram app, editing with the glorious Valencia filter and adding a shitload of hashtags to our caption… It seems like we’ve all ditched our old social habits and swapped them for new ideas. But are hashtags really something we should forget about?
To explain the importance of hashtags, we should probably recap how they actually work. Once you add a hashtag to your social post, you basically add a label that links your content to other, similar content. It influences the Instagram algorithm and brings your content to users who might be interested. And additionally, it also fuels the search results on the explore page.
Hashtags help you drive engagement, optimise your content and reach your target audience. Which - mostly - also means more customers! They also help you build a community and make finding UGC content a whole lot easier. However, you do need to #ThinkThisThrough
A while ago, Instagram recommended 3 to 5 hashtags for each post even though you can add 30. So what ís the perfect amount of hashtags? Well, according to research done by social platform Later, 20 hashtags offer you the biggest reach. However, this doesn’t mean you nééd 20 hashtags on each post. Focus on quality, relevance and hashtags that just fit your content. Whether that’s 5, 9 or 14!
When deciding on which hashtags you want to use, you should be wary. In fact, you should probably do some research! By searching keywords that are relevant to your brand in the Instagram app itself, you can scan popular content and discover which hashtags they’re using. Let these inspire you!
Another way to research hashtags is by simply typing a hashtag you’d want to use in the Instagram search bar and checking how many hits you get. Does a hashtag have 200 million hits? Then your post will probably get lost in a sea of other content. Does it have 2 hits? Then nobody will ever find you. So go on the hunt for hashtags that are used often, but not too often. We’d recommend those with 10.000-200.000 hits.
Finally, it doesn’t matter where you put the hashtags you’ve chosen. Whether you’re proud of your hashtags and boldly want them directly in your caption or you prefer them hidden in the first comment… It both works for the Instagram algorithm!
So contrary to what many believe, hashtags are still alive and kicking in 2023! They’re just a little extra step in your social strategy. Research them, use them and don’t forget to analyse them. Now, #LetsGetHashtagging