Using hashtags to increase engagement.

If hashtags are something that you typically shy away from on Instagram, you are missing out on a chance to have your work seen by an entirely new audience.

Using hashtags gives users a way to search you out based on their interests, giving you a chance to connect with people truly engaged in what you’re doing.

Here are a few ways to maximize your hashtag usage:

Know your limits. Instagram allows you a maximum of 30 hashtags per post. You’ll want to choose wisely and remember that not every posts need that many. Think carefully about your messaging and what hashtags might enhance that message to the audience that you’re after.

Do your research. If the hashtags you are using are too popular, your image is likely to get buried among the posts. Yes, you’ll gain new followers, but they will likely be spammers and people trying to get followers themselves. Focusing on unique hashtags that cater to your specific audience made up of high-quality clients that match your brand.

Measure. Measure. Measure. Did you know that you can view hashtag insights on Instagram? After you’ve selected the post, you can select “view insights” in the bottom left. From there you can swipe up to see the number of impressions that each hashtag reached.

Keep it clean. If you don’t like the look of all the hashtags with your caption, you can either put them in the first comment or leave enough space in the post that they won’t show up. You can do this by hitting the period + return three (3) times to push the hashtags down.

Be efficient. Why not keep some clusters of frequently used hashtags in a note on your phone? This will allow you to group your hashtags based on the type of image you’re sharing and will save you time by being able to cut and paste.

Don’t forget to promote yourself. Don’t forget to come up with a hashtag that promotes YOUR business. By including a #yourbusinessname with your images, potential clients can easily jump to a full collection of your work.

What are your tips for using hashtags on Instagram? Tell us in the comments!

Molly Connor

Molly is the marketing and communications guru at Iris Works. She is also a long-time professional wedding photographer in the Indianapolis area. She is a lover of all dogs, but especially her sweet girl, Henry June, the Great Dane who frequents the Iris Works headquarters.

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