Hashtags are words or phrases used to categorize content on social media. Posts with at least one hashtag get around 12.6% more engagement than posts without any hashtags. They help expand your reach to your target audience and they increase chances of gaining new followers, getting more likes and increasing engagement. Every post on social media can be accompanied by one or a few hashtags. Hashtags help organize and categorize your content, which helps the process of its discovery and optimization. For example, a fashion blogger might post a picture of a dress and use hashtags like #fashionista, #beautifuldress and #ootd.
1. Be specific
The more you specify your hashtag, the more you target your audience, which means better engagement.For example, if you sell fitness clothes, instead of using #clothes use #fitness. This hashtag is more specific to people who work out—your target customer.
2. Use unbranded hashtags
If you’re a business owner, use hashtags that represent your brand not your brand’s name. There are some incredibly popular hashtags on Instagram and if executed properly, they can really help your brand engage with existing followers and attract new ones.
3. Don’t use long words
The shorter, the better. Abbreviations are commonly used in hashtags. For example, use #socmedia for social media or #socap for social capital. In general, it’s good to avoid using hashtags with more than 10 characters. Hashtags are supposed to make things easier to find and engage with, but long, complicated hashtags can actually be more arduous.
4. Don’t overdo it
Don’t exceed 10 hashtags per post. Having 30 hashtags creates the perception that your post could be spam, so keep it short . After researching various profiles on Instagram, the optimum number of hashtags for likes is seven hashtags before they negatively affect engagement.
5. Be creative
The more memorable the hashtags, the better the disocoverability. For example, for social activism your could use #dogood. This will be more memorable for your audience. Don’t try and be too clever or offbeat, just keep it fun. If you post an avocado toast, play with hashtags like #avotoast for instance.