Instagram hashtags are a great way for content creators to gain exposure for their content. Created by Chris Messina to categorise tweets of the same topic together, hashtags were born in 2007. The concept of hashtags has since expanded to become an integral part of every social media platform including Instagram.
How Can Hashtags Help Content Creators?
Improve Searchability & Visibility
Currently, Instagram is a photo and video based content platform. Instagram’s search function only supports searching based on Accounts, Tags, and Locations. Users can only discover specific types of content through hashtags. As such, hashtags play an integral role in bringing content creators content exposure and awareness among Instagram users. While text can be input through captions, Instagram does not support searching for images via captions. That is why hashtags can be thought of as keywords of Instagram to help users find your content.
Annabelle (@pyperbleu) effectively uses hashtags to help users discover her content. The hashtags she uses are specific and relevant to the content in her picture and new upload on YouTube.
Hashtags can be used by everyone and created by anyone. Using hashtags is a great way to keep your audience up to date with your content and allows your followers to also participate in and share content with you.
Wendy (@withwendy) uses her own hashtag, #madewithwendy, where her followers can share the things they’ve made with the help of her tutorial videos on YouTube. This hashtag is unique to Wendy and creates a community where followers can meet and view other followers’ creations.
Aside from creating your own hashtags, creators can also leverage on existing hashtags to join communities. Jusuf (@jusufreinhard) uses existing hashtags to enter existing communities within Instagram such as #memade.
How To Use Hashtags?
The most important thing to note when using hashtags is your account needs to be public in order for your posts to be visible on a hashtag. While Instagram allows up to 30 hashtags on every post, it is recommended to only select the most relevant hashtags to avoid making your content seem like spam.
To keep the focus on your caption, one way to ‘hide’ hashtags is by adding them as the first comment rather than directly into the caption like how @skin.lumi does.
How To Find The Right Hashtags
The basic rule of thumb is if it is relevant to your content, it should be able to help you reach the right audience. One way to find out what are the relevant trends within your niche would be to look into other influencers within the same niche. What hashtags are they using? Are the posts with that hashtag relevant to yours?
Another type of hashtag that can be highly valuable in helping your content gain exposure is based on special occasions. For example, if you have Valentine’s Day related content during February, you could use the #valentinesday hashtag due to its popularity during that time. Having said that, it is still important to ensure that the content you are posting is actually related to that hashtag.
Finally, using other tools such as Avenue’s Trend function will allow you to identify what is currently trending within your niche, influencer tier and time period.
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