How hashtags work on Instagram

Hashtags on Instagram, if used correctly, can make your posts more visible to the public: find out how to use them.

In an increasingly connected world where sharing is the watchword, the correct use of hashtags on Instagram can be very useful.

What is in fact one of the most powerful tools made available by the Facebook platform should be handled with care, so as to maximize the number of likes and comments on our posts. Using them in the right way, will help us to expose our brand - or personal brand, as the case may be - to a large audience and, above all, segmented according to our needs.

Not everyone, however, knows them properly, and it is not uncommon to come across on social networks - and not only - in some bizarre uses of the precious little gates.

Simple social network enthusiasts, influencers or even companies should therefore know how to put hashtags on Instagram in order to increase the audience of their personal profile or to obtain the maximum conversion in terms of followers and engagement - that is, the involvement of users.

What are hashtags

Originally born on the white and blue shores of Twitter, hashtags began to spread widely in Italy in 2015, finding their natural habitat on Instagram. And the one in which to proliferate.

Commonly, the term hashtag goes to indicate a label that automatically encloses and organizes the content proposed in a specific theme, whether on apps, social networks or the web more generally.

Because it is a thematic aggregator, it has the function of making it easier for users to quickly find posts on a theme or content of their interest. In a service that supports them, such as Instagram, hashtags can be created by users themselves by inserting the hash character - visually # - in front of a word or phrase in the main text.

And while it's true that the word of reference can consist of both letters and digits, similarly, spaces and special characters are absolutely not allowed.

For hashtags on Instagram, then, the trend is to show people anything that might be in line with their passions. That's why in the feeds it's not unusual to find posts shared always by the same users, in the name of an increasingly satisfying and personalized experience.

How to choose the right hashtags

The one described so far is proposed as a context in which hashtags are the foundation of targeted sharing, which bring to our account only users who are really interested in our posts and belong to a very specific niche - such as food, animals, travel or art, just to name a few examples.

Of course, there are no hashtags with the magic touch that guarantee thousands of likes to every post we share on Instagram. In any case, you can still choose the right ones to be able to expand - and a lot! - the popularity of our company or our profile.

You will understand then that identifying the keywords to create our reference niche is the starting point to publish an effective post, and that can be "pushed" among the many daily feeds present on the app acquired by Mark Zuckerberg's colossus.

As a consequence, we must use words relevant to what we are uploading. A photo taken during a trip to Puglia where the sun sinks into the sea at sunset could, for example, be described with the hashtags #sun #sea #sunset #puglia #sun #sea #sunset and #travel. It is therefore important to describe exactly through the hashtags what we see in the post, telling a short but comprehensive story that can contextualize what we have immortalized.

Beware, however: with the massive spread of Instagram, the most common hashtags no longer have much visibility and are able to return satisfactory results only to those who already have a well-established following.

A winning strategy is to "make your bones" in the field and observe the most experienced. Thanks to the "Search" function on Instagram, we can identify some profiles similar to ours that are currently achieving excellent results, boasting a good post/like ratio and a large number of comments. Having identified the most brilliant examples and the hashtags of our interest, the application will suggest a whole series of related rather in vogue in the feed. Also in this case we have to make a selection that reflects our niche, so as to take inspiration from the selected profiles. We analyze the hashtags that they use most often and especially those present under the most successful posts.

Now that we have a list of hashtags that we can reuse, we can choose about twenty that reflect our style and the chosen theme, mixing the most popular and less popular ones.

Mistakes to avoid

To use hashtags on Instagram in the most effective way, it is therefore essential to avoid some of the most common mistakes. Those that could irreparably compromise the success of a seemingly winning post.

Hashtags work even better if we have in mind what our niche is, but we must absolutely not get stuck on the same ones.

To avoid the so-called "shadowban" and gain a big organic visibility, it is then a good idea to rely on research and variation of keywords, continuously testing new and potentially better ones.

Not only that, it is not advisable to add hashtags on Instagram after publication or in the comments, as well as it could be counterproductive to insert too many of them. Although Instagram allows up to 30 hashtags, it would be more appropriate to choose between 10 and 20, well thought out and absolutely in line with our post.