In our last blog, we talked about all the changes Instagram has made to the way you use hashtags. There is a laundry list of things you should and shouldn’t do, so if you’re not aware of the changes, read about them here. If you’re already aware of the changes, then you’re ready to learn how to use these new rules to your advantage.
Since Instagram doesn’t want you to use the same hashtags over and over, you need to stop and think about the hashtags that are relevant to the industry your business is in. And if you use Instagram just for fun, consider what you’re posting before choosing some fun hashtags that will bring more people to your post.
Want to increase your engagement and get more quality followers to your Instagram account? Just include more specific hashtags to your post.
For example, if you travelled to Hawaii and stayed at the Royal Kona Resort, look for the resort’s official branded hashtag. If they have one, use it with the pictures you’ve posted. You can also use other relevant location hashtags to draw in more followers.
So, how do you find out what hashtags your followers are already following:
Look at your competitors - Do a little research and see what hashtags business competitors – or others posting similar content – are using. You can then decide if you want to use the same hashtags or find different ones if you don’t want to compete for followers.
Check out the hashtags influencers in your industry are using - They are influencers. They supposedly know what they are doing, so it’s worth checking out what they are using.
Utilize Instagram’s search function (Explore feature) - Type a relevant keyword into the search function and then select the “Tags” tab. You will be able to see all the hashtags that relate to the keyword and how many posts are tagged in it. The more people following that hashtag, the more likely your content is going to get lost in the depths of Instagram. Try using a mix of popular and niche hashtags to find the perfect combination for your content.
What about using related hashtags? Sure. Why not? You can find them by tapping any hashtag and going to its page. Between the “Follow” tab and the “Top” and “Recent” tabs, you’ll see a row of related hashtags. This is another way to get relevant hashtags for your content that also gives more of a niche vibe.
Still not sure how to tag your content? Review posts that have a successful hashtag already in it. Look for other common and relevant hashtags that you can use in a future post. Remember, with the changes Instagram has instituted, you only want to use hashtags that are relevant to your content, your brand, industry and audience. If not, you might be flagged as a spammer and see your engagement go down.