In 2018 a lot of social media rules has changed, and Instagram platform is not an exception. Majority of the best Instagram strategies that perfectly worked in the past aren’t so efficient as before.
However, there are and the good news – Instagram hashtags are still effective tactic in order to gain more new followers and increase level of engagement.
When it comes to the topic of using Instagram hashtags, it may be a little bit sensitive thing. Some people like using a lot of hashtags, some hate them. But did you heard the fact that the posts which include at least one Instagram hashtag get average 12,6% higher engagement level than without hashtag?
So, it is better to put the right hashtags under your Instagram posts and you will see how engagement is growing and an amount of followers is increasing. Probably you ask why it is happens?
It happens because hashtags as a combination of words or numbers starting by the # symbol classify posts and make them more noticeable. When people click on a particular hashtag or search for it, they see all posts related to this hashtag.
Some people think that if they use the tactic of 30 hashtags, their activity on Instagram will be successful, but it isn’t truth. The amount of hashtags isn’t so important than the right balance between Instagram hashtags and your account. It is easier for some users to grow their Instagram profile, while others have to be more creative.
Here you will find a lot of different tips, from following hashtags that are important for your Instagram account’s niche to adding hashtags to your stories. You will learn about new and useful strategies of using Instagram hashtags that you need to start applying without any delays in order to grow your account and make it discoverable.
Let’s get started!
1. Switch up hashtags to avoid “spammy” behavior
One significant rule which you should follow is – don’t copy and paste the same list of Instagram hashtags under the photo or video. Because Instagram can understand this your action as a spam and reduce visibility of your posts. Now you see why by the new Instagram rules it is important to switch up hashtags.
Probably you can have a question – how often it is better to switch up the hashtags? The answer is you should do it as frequently as possible. Actually, every time you upload the new post.
In order to safe your time on writing new hashtags every time you post the photo or video, you may create several combinations of hashtags and save them in the notes section of your telephone. When you will decide to upload the new picture, just select one of your created lists of hashtags and add it to the post’s caption.
In this case the hashtags will be more relevant to your post. And other users who are in the same target niche as you will discover your post, comment it or like it, in other words they will grow your engagement level and maybe become your followers.
Why Instagram started to keep this kind of actions as a spam, just because it is trying to find fake accounts. However you shouldn’t worry, if you are often switching up the hashtags and adding the ones which describe your posts.
2. Use relevant hashtags
Hashtags on your posts should be used strategically. Remember that if you give your target audience what they want to see, your Instagram engagement relatively will increase. You need to choose the hashtags that describe your Instagram account, your brand (product or service) or your target niche.
If you use popular hashtags, such as #likeforlike, #followme, you will get the new followers, but more chances that you attract bots, spammers and other users who aren’t interested in engagement with you in significant ways.
However it doesn’t mean that you must ignore all popular Instagram hashtags, there are some universal ones or in other words community hashtags, like #picoftheday, #instagood, #instagrammers, #selfie, #nofilter.
The advantage of this type of hashtags is that they make your content more visible and help to grow your target audience. Remember that you can use only one or three maximum community hashtags per post, however you need to focus on hashtags that are the most relevant to your posts and audience.
In this case your Instagram profile won’t look like a spam bot trying to get more likes, on the contrary it will seem an attractive, encouraging other Instagram users to engage.
Another major type of hashtags are branded hashtags that contain a name of your brand, company or campaign. When you are making your own branded hashtag, don’t forget to make it short and easy to remember but creative in order to cause other users interest. Branded hashtags are used to increase awareness of your brand, company, services or products.
However as it was mentioned earlier, all the hashtags you add in a caption should match the post. For better understanding are the hashtags that you use relevant to the posts you upload, it is advisable to do search for your hashtags and pay attention to the posts that show up in the feed.
All in all, adding relevant hashtags in the caption of the post that match your target audience’s interests significantly increases your reach. It means that your posts are discoverable to a bigger amount of new potential followers and can receive higher engagement level.
3. Add clickable hashtags to bio
Your Instagram bio is very important if you are using an account to promote your brand, company or even just to show your personality. With a creative text of maximum 150 characters and clickable link it can be hard to drive bigger traffic.
However thanks to the latest Instagram update, which allows to create more efficient bio adding clickable hashtags there. Now if you include # symbol in your bio, it will become clickable link and let other users view the posts with the same hashtag. When a person is looking for the posts of the specific hashtag, there is a chance that he will find your post, then visits your profile, maybe will follow you or just engage.
This function provides an opportunity to make your Instagram bio more functional, allowing to highlight your main message which you want to say to account’s visitors or promote something.
4. Following hashtags is beneficial
Another new feature which Instagram provides to its users is the ability to follow hashtags. Now users can be aware of the latest information on different topics by following hashtags which fit their interests.
In order to follow specific hashtag you need to open this hashtag page and click on follow button, the same as with users’ account. After that you will see posts and stories of your following hashtags.
You may also use this update to find interesting profiles by choosing to follow your niche hashtags. Probably if you engage with these accounts, you will get the same in return.
What is more, while uploading the post in the caption you can use call-to-action which will be to encourage your niche audience to follow your brand’s or personality’s hashtag, so in this case they will stay more close to you.
5. Add hashtags to stories
This is not new but useful feature of Instagram which allows users to add hashtags to the Instagram stories and make their content more visible.
It is convenient that this feature works in the same way as with regular posts, when you add a hashtag to your story, you can easily search it from search and explore page.
If someone searches for the same hashtag you added, they can see your story in the top of the page. If people are really interested in a hashtag, they will view your story and probably go to see your profile. If they like it, they can follow you or just engage.
All in all, by using Instagram hashtags tactic, your content will be more discoverable by other users across the world. As a result of this, your target audience and engagement level will increase.
6. Use the right number of hashtags
There is a lot of contradictory information about deciding what the right amount of Instagram hashtags is. While some experts can tell you don’t use more than 3 or 5 hashtags, other recommend to use from 5 to 10.
However, the practice shows that if you are able to find 30 hashtags which fit your post and Instagram niche, then definitely it is better to use maximum number of hashtags allowed by Instagram. The bigger amount of hashtags gives a chance to be more discovered by other Instagram users.
On the other hand, if you feel uncomfortable adding so many hashtags to the caption, use less. Because you can experiment with the quantity of hashtags you use on your posts in order to find as it is called “sweet spot”.
Actually, you shouldn’t forget that the new followers you attract only depend on the type and number of hashtags which you use in your Instagram account.
7. Hide hashtags
Instagram caption formatting function allows you to hide hashtags in order to don’t look spammy and keep followers or visitors of your Instagram account focused on the most important things – it is your eye-catching caption.
If you used to hide Instagram hashtags before, so you should know how to do it. But we will tell you one more time. So, in order to get a clean look when you are putting the hashtags in a comment, start with 5 dots on separate lines and then add all your hashtags below. Now instead of pile of hashtags, you will see symbol […].
All things considered, Instagram hashtags function still work. Try to use hashtags strategically and the right ones and you will be sure that it is a useful way to reach potential followers, build long-term relationships which will grow the engagement level, find followers in the same target niche and many other things.
Just think about which hashtags are import for you niche and how you are using them. Every time uploading the posts, you should think about your audience. Try to apply the tips that are discussed above and you will be one step closer to growing your Instagram followers and boost your account’s engagement.
Have you applied any other strategies of using Instagram hashtags in order to get you positive results to your account? If the answer is yes, share what has worked for you!