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Are you using hashtags on your posts and seeing no difference or improvement in performance? Although Instagram Hashtags are riddled across Instagram they don’t seem to be much of a priority however, they remain the most underestimated social feature on the platform.

Not only do hashtags make your posts more discoverable but they help increase engagement. It may be quick and easy to just plonk a few hashtags on a post but a hashtag strategy remains one of the most important aspects of promoting your brand through social media. Subsequently, achieving your business objectives whether it be selling products or increasing traffic to your website.

Without a broader knowledge of hashtags they can seem rather ‘spammy’ and useless however, curating and implementing an effective hashtag strategy you will allow you to capture your niche by placing your content in front of the right people.

Do not worry I’m here to help! This blog post will provide you with my top tips when making a hashtag strategy for Instagram and how to implement it.

1. What is your overarching objective?

Yes, this is the basic stuff. When deciding on your hashtags you need to understand what your ultimate adjective is. This could depend on whether you are focusing on building brand awareness, campaign awareness or growing your following. This enables a more streamlined collection of hashtags which target a more defined audience for example, if you are building brand awareness using brand hashtags will allow those interested in the content to engage with the brand more easily. They also allow campaign posts to be located and tracked more easily post-campaign.

2. Decide on who you would like to target

Another thing to consider is what type of person you are wanting to target. If you are releasing a new product you need to identify what type of person would be using that product and use hashtags which they would tend to search. For example, if pampers are releasing a new type of nappy for babies they’d need to use hashtags that new mums would tend to search.

3. Define your core hashtags

There will be a selection of hashtags that will form the basis of your hashtag strategy, this would involve your brand name and industry keywords and topics for example, at connective3 are core hashtags are:

#connective3 #c3 #digitalmarketingagency #marketing #socialmedia #pr #seo

4. Select current trends which are relevant to your brand/post

Include selected hashtags that are relevant to the post you are publishing for example, for connective3 a post celebrating a brand nomination would include these hashtags:

#awards #awardnomination #digitalmarketingawards

5. Split your hashtags into sections

In terms of format your hashtags should be sectioned into core hashtags, relevant/campaign hashtags (hashtags relevant to that specific post) and current trending hashtags (using hashtags that are currently trending will help your post to be seen by more people). Trending hashtags include topics that have become popular and what people are talking about in every corner. When you see a trend relating to your business, you should engage in it by using the tag.

 6. Keep them tidy or hidden

Ensure your hashtags are very selective and relevant to your post. Select the correct number of hashtags for each platform and place them in the most beneficial area of the platform:

Twitter – Use between 1-2 hashtags have been shown to improve engagement. More than this can do more harm than good.

Facebook – Use 1-2 hashtags can help brand awareness, but there’s no proof that hashtags are particularly beneficial on the platform, but it won’t hurt to put them in there.

Instagram – Slot between 2-4 hashtags in the caption and place around 15-20 hashtags in the comment section so they are hidden away. They may look too spammy if they are in the caption section.

Top-tip! Keep your hashtags the notes section of your phone for easy access.

7. Test and adapt

It is all about trial and error! To track out the success of your hashtag strategy we can monitor how much engagement it receives, monitor the engagement rates and then adapt your strategy. Once again, track your strategy once it is changed so you can determine which type of hashtags are doing well for your page. Eventually, you will end up with the winning strategy where you’re posting hashtags which are gaining the most engagement for your brand/Instagram page.

By using these tips you will be able to put together a killer hashtag strategy! If you’d like some more information on how to achieve success when conducting your hashtag strategy, get in contact and let us know!

Stay tuned for my next blog for more social-media tips, or if you just can’t wait head to our Social Media page for more info on our approach.