Keeping up with the #Hashtags


"I'm not good at hashtags."

"Do I need to have my own hashtag?"

"Why so many hashtags?"

Just a few of the questions I hear on the regular regarding Instagram. The truth is, sometimes hashtag research can be as time consuming as content development, but research shows that Instagram posts with at least one hastag typically perform 12.6% better than a post without hashtags. And posts with 11+ hashtags get the highest engagement (you can do up to 30 so max those bad boys out!). 

Ok, so I need to use them. But why?
Wondering why hashtags amp up your Insta? Because people have Google search so deeply embedded in their blood, that they are using social media platforms like Instagram as a search engine. I don't know about you, but I sometimes take my shopping inspiration straight from the little square app. In fact, you can actually follow hashtags you like or that might connect with your customers just to see what other people using that hashtag are saying.

Example, if you sell shoes, determine what hashtags your buyers would be searching for when they go to look for inspiration (black suede pump, classy shoes, dressy shoes), and there are some hashtag ideas. I even recommend splitting the hashtags into general to specific. For example, shoot for ten generic (#shoe, #shoes, #black shoe), ten mid-specific (#blackleathershoe) and ten specific (#blackpeeptoepump). This gives you variety and, in the event you get overlooked in the #shoe category, surely someone will notice that #blackpeeptoepump!

But hashtag research is exhausting.
Excuses, excuses! Well, yes, sometimes it is. But so is running a business. So, rather than you throwing a perfectly curated post out into la la land, remember with hashtags, you're actually HELPING the post get in front of more eyes that actually care about your products or service. This means you'll generally have more people engaging in your post. You have helped someone find something they need or like, so props to you!

Where do I find hashtags?
You can do your own research, of course. But sites like All Hashtag and Display Purposes  help you generate hashtags specific to words that make sense for your brand or product. Also, be sure to add your location in your post (posts tagged with a location receive 79% higher engagement).

I'll spend an hour posting all these things.
No you won't because you're going to be smart and download the PLANN app right this minute and spend 30 mins saving your most popular hashtags. Then, they are all stored and when you post, you can mozy on over to PLANN and grab your hashtags you worked so hard to save.

So, don't stress about hashtags. Here's a shortlist of what to do to amp up your hashtag game today.

  • Research your hashtags

  • Pick 30 for your top 10 categories (it's okay if some overlap)

  • Download PLANN and save the hashtags to categories

  • Voila! You're a hashtagging pro!