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Hashtagging 101

Sep

19

One question I am asked a lot is how you can grow your Instagram. Although this is a loaded question with more than one answer, one way that you can grow your Instagram account is with hashtags! Today I’m going to tell you all the ins and outs of hashtagging.

Why Use Hashtags?

A hashtag is a word or phrase preceded by a hash sign (#) that you can add to a photo caption or comment on Instagram to help it be seen by more people. There are currently over one billion users on Instagram, so hashtags make a big difference when you are trying to grow your audience. Hashtags can be used for a variety of reasons. They help to categorize content for your audience, they can help get your photos in front of people who are interested in the same things, and they can help you find people who are in the same niche, which can in turn help you gain more followers!

With millions of hashtags out there, it is important that you use the most relevant and appropriate hashtags on your photos. You can use up to 30 hashtags in a post, but you should choose them wisely.

Here are some guidelines for choosing hashtags:

1. What specific niche does this particular post fall into? Choose specific hashtags that align with this. You can search for hashtags using the ‘search tag’ feature on Instagram. Search keywords from your niche and see what popular hashtags other people in your niche are using!

2. Then, look at how many posts have used that hashtag before. For example, a hashtag used on over 1 million posts is probably being used pretty frequently and it may not give your post much exposure. However, a hashtag that has only been used 200 times, probably won’t give you a lot of exposure either. I recommend using a mix of hashtags that have been used on 20,000-300,000 posts. This will get your posts seen and attract people in your niche.

3. Find accounts that are similar to yours and check their hashtags! Then click the hashtag to see if it would be a good fit. This is how I’ve found some of my favorite hashtags that I use.

4. Get Creative! When searching for new hashtags to use, don’t be afraid to think outside the box. Think of hashtags that relate to your photo, but may not be totally obvious. For example, I recently took a photo of the girls, so I used my regular hashtags for posts about kids. However, we were at the park with our UppaBaby stroller, so I also included hashtags related to those things as well.

5. Use an app to find relevant hashtags. Some examples are: Hashtag App, Tagomatic, and Smarthash. These apps are great because they allow you to search the most trending hashtags and find which ones are relevant to you.

Once you figure out the hashtags that you want to use, it’s helpful to create specific hashtag lists and save them somewhere on your phone! This will not only make the process easier, but will also save you time. I recommend having a hashtag list for the topics you post about most often. For example, I have a photography list, an essential oils list, and a foster care/motherhood list. You can save these in a note on your phone or you can save specific hashtag lists on apps like Plann or Planoly.

6. Use a hash tagging bank! When you sign up for Well Styled Essentials, you will receive a hashtagging guide with popular hashtags based on the category of your post which will make using hashtags so easy! 🙌

What is your favorite way to find hashtags to use? Tell me in the comments, I want to hear from you!

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