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3 Basic Tips for Using Hashtags in Your Instagram Posts

3 tips for using hashtags in Instagram sandy hibbard creative blog


“When you enchant people, your goal is not to make money from them or to get them to do what you want, but to fill them with great delight.” 

~ Guy Kawasaki

Greetings everyone! I want to quickly share 3 basic tips for using hashtags in your Instagram posts. There are so many ways to “skin the cat” in social media marketing and you know me, I am always looking to streamline and simplify. I understand that the main objective in your social media posts is to get them seen by as many people as you can, right? One of the most effective ways of doing that is using hashtags. But when it comes to using Instagram hashtags, it can be a bit of a touchy subject. Some people hate them, and some people love them a little too much. But did you know that posts with at least one Instagram hashtag average 12.6% more engagement than posts without a hashtag?

I have put together 3 tips that I use (and I know works!) to help you get started using hashtags. There is much more info out there, but this will give you an understanding of the basics. Don’t be shy, jump in and experiment, test different ideas, different words that describe the content, test, adjust and repeat!  Let’s go!


When Should You Use Instagram Hashtags?

The short answer? As often as possible! Whenever you share content on Instagram, whether it’s a post or Instagram story, if your goal is to get it seen by as many people as possible, you need to be using Instagram hashtags.

That being said, there might be occasions where using hashtags isn’t necessary! Like if you’re sharing a personal anecdote or story.

This is more often the case with Instagram Stories than with regular posts (because they tend to be more casual in general), but it varies from case to case. At the end of the day, it’s best to weigh the tone or topic of your post, along with what you’re hoping to achieve, and then decide if it makes sense to use hashtags.


What Hashtags Should You Use?

The most important thing to keep in mind when deciding what hashtags to use is that you’re being intentional — as in, you’re using hashtags that your target audience is actually searching for and following!

It’s important to switch up your Instagram hashtags in every post to avoid being “spammy.” It’s also a good idea to avoid gimmicky hashtags such as #likeforlike, and hashtags that have been used a million-plus times. While these hashtags might get you a few extra likes, they aren’t going to help you grow a highly engaged, targeted following.

Instead, try looking for ultra-niche community hashtags that are specifically relevant to the content you post. It’s not a bad idea to build multiple hashtag lists that are organized by theme or category.

And don’t forget to use your branded hashtag whenever it makes sense! The first step to getting other users to share your branded hashtag is to use it yourself.


How Many Hashtags Should You Use?

Unfortunately, there’s no hard-and-fast rule when it comes to deciding how many hashtags you should use. While some experts like Alex Tooby recommend using the maximum number of hashtags allowed, because it gives you more opportunities to be discovered, others recommend using just 5-10.

I have seen all sorts of strategies and ideas on how many hashtags make the difference, but at the end of the day, it’s really up to you. If you can find 30 super-relevant hashtags to add to each post, then you should definitely go for it.


When you are ready to launch a strategic InstaBranding campaign for your business, call me, lets see how we can work together!

Love and Peace!





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