Boost your instagram account with these hashtag strategies

Boost Instagram Reach by Mastering a Hashtag Strategy

Boosting your Instagram reach by mastering a hashtag strategy is best practice for your business.  

In the world of Instagram, hashtags play a crucial role in expanding your reach, increasing your visibility, and connecting with your target audience.

When used strategically, hashtags can help you reach new Instagram followers, increase engagement, and build a strong community around your content. In this guide, we will explore effective strategies to master your hashtag game on Instagram and maximise your results.

Hashtag Strategy Contents

  1. The Power of Hashtags
  2. Researching Relevant Hashtags
  3. Using a Mix of Popular and Niche Hashtags
  4. Creating Branded Hashtags
  5. Utilising Hashtags in Captions and Comments
  6. Monitoring and Analysing Hashtag Performance
  7. Engaging with Hashtag Communities
  8. Avoiding Banned or Irrelevant Hashtags
  9. Hashtag Best Practices
  10. Conclusion.

The Strategy of Instagram Hashtags

A clear definition of a hashtag can be as follows: Hashtags are words or phrases preceded by the “#” symbol, which turn them into clickable links. They are used primarily on social media platforms like Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and LinkedIn. When a user includes a hashtag in their post or comment, it becomes a clickable link that leads to a page displaying all other posts that have used the same hashtag.

Hashtags serve several purposes.

Hashtags categorise content based on a specific topic, theme, or event. They act as labels that help organize and group similar posts together. For example, a post about a music festival might include the hashtag #MusicFestival to join the larger conversation around that event.


Hashtags make content discoverable. Users can search for a specific hashtag or click on a hashtag within a post to view other content related to that topic. This allows users to explore and find posts, discussions, and communities centered around a particular subject.

Trending topics:

Hashtags also help identify and participate in trending topics. Platforms often display a list of trending hashtags or topics, indicating what is currently popular or widely discussed. By including these hashtags in their posts, users can join the conversation and potentially increase their content’s visibility.

Engagement and community building:

Hashtags facilitate engagement and community building. By using a specific hashtag, users can connect with others who share similar interests, causes, or discussions. This enables individuals to engage in conversations, share experiences, and build relationships with like-minded people.

Branding and marketing:

Hashtags play a crucial role in branding and marketing strategies. Brands and businesses create unique hashtags associated with their products, campaigns, or events. These hashtags help create brand recognition, encourage user-generated content, and allow businesses to track and monitor conversations related to their brand.

Campaigns and movements:

Hashtags have been widely used to promote campaigns, movements, and social causes. They serve as rallying points, allowing people to come together and advocate for change. Hashtags associated with movements like #MeToo, #BlackLivesMatter, or #ClimateAction have been instrumental in raising awareness and mobilizing support.

An Infographic showing how to Boost Instagram with Hashtag Strategies
Infographic to summarise Hashtag Strategies

Researching Relevant Hashtags

Our Web Design & Digital Marketing Surrey can run this for you.  However, before incorporating hashtags into your posts, it’s essential to conduct thorough research to identify relevant and popular hashtags within your niche.

Here’s how you can find the right hashtags:

Understand Your Target Audience

Start by understanding your target audience and the topics, interests, and discussions they engage with.

Look up your customers and see who they follow, and note their comments, likes, and shares.  record what common values they focus on.

This knowledge will help you choose hashtags that resonate with your audience and increase the likelihood of your content being discovered by the right people.

Identify relevant keywords

Brainstorm and identify relevant keywords related to your content, industry, or niche.

These keywords should reflect the core themes, topics, or keywords that are associated with your post.

For example, if you’re posting about fitness, relevant keywords might include #fitness, #health, #workout, and so on.

Research popular hashtags

Your strategy should be to look for popular hashtags that are widely used and have a large number of posts associated with them.

Social media platforms often display trending hashtags or provide suggestions based on your keyword searches.

Use Instagram’s search bar: Start by typing relevant keywords into Instagram’s search bar and explore the suggested hashtags and accounts that appear. This will give you insights into popular hashtags in your niche.

Use third-party tools: There are several third-party tools available, such as Hashtagify, RiteTag, and TagBlender, that provide insights into popular and trending hashtags related to your niche. Utilize these tools to discover new hashtag opportunities.

Explore these popular hashtags to see if they align with your content and can help increase your visibility.

Explore Niche-Specific Hashtags

Dive into niche-specific hashtags that are specific to your industry or area of interest.

These hashtags might have a smaller audience but can be highly targeted, reaching people who are particularly interested in your niche.

For example, if you’re in the food industry, you could use hashtags like #foodbloggers, #foodphotography, or #veganrecipes, depending on your specific content.

Analyse competitor hashtags

Another way to build your instagram followers is to look at the hashtags your competitors or industry leaders are using in their posts.

This can give you insights into popular hashtags in your industry and help you identify relevant ones for your content.

However, ensure that the hashtags you choose are genuinely relevant to your own content and not simply copied from others.

Use Hashtag Research Tools

Take advantage of hashtag research tools available online.

These tools allow you to discover popular and related hashtags based on your keywords or industry.

Some popular tools include Hashtagify, RiteTag, and Display Purposes.

These tools provide insights into the popularity, reach, and usage of specific hashtags.

Check Hashtag Engagement

Before finalising your hashtags, check the engagement levels of those hashtags.

Look at the number of posts associated with a hashtag, but also consider the engagement (likes, comments, shares) those posts receive.

This will give you an idea of how active and involved the audience is for that particular hashtag.

Mix Popular and Niche Hashtags

Strike a balance between using popular hashtags with a broader reach and niche hashtags that target a specific audience.

A mix of both can help you increase your visibility to a wider audience while still reaching people who are specifically interested in your content.

A lady interacts with instagram hashtag communities on her phone

Creating A Branded Hashtag Strategy

Creating a branded hashtag is a powerful way to increase brand awareness and encourage user-generated content.

A branded hashtag should be unique, easy to remember, and relevant to your brand.

Encourage your followers to use your branded hashtag in their posts, and regularly engage with the content they create.

This not only strengthens your brand community but also amplifies your reach as your branded hashtag is shared.

Utilising Hashtags in Captions and Comments

To maximise your hashtag strategy, it’s important to use hashtags strategically in your captions and comments. Here are some best practices to follo

  • Place hashtags strategically: Incorporate hashtags naturally within your captions to avoid appearing spammy. You can place them at the end of your captions or incorporate them within the text. 

  • Mix popular and niche hashtags: Combine popular and niche hashtags relevant to your post to increase your chances of being discovered by a wider audience while targeting your specific niche.

  • Use specific location-based hashtags: If your content is location-specific, include relevant location-based hashtags to target users in that area.

  • Utilise trending hashtags: Stay up-to-date with trending topics or events and incorporate relevant trending hashtags into your posts. This can help you gain visibility and engage with a larger audience.

Monitoring and Analysing Hashtag Strategy Performance

Monitoring and analysing the performance of your hashtags is essential to understand which ones are driving the most engagement and attracting the most followers. Keep an eye on the following metrics

  • Impressions: Track the number of impressions your posts receive from hashtags to identify which ones are driving the most reach.

  • Engagement: Analyse the likes, comments, and shares your posts receive from each hashtag. This will help you identify the hashtags that are generating the most engagement.

  • Follower growth: Monitor your follower growth and analyse whether certain hashtags are attracting more followers to your account

    Based on these insights, refine your hashtag strategy by focusing on the hashtags that yield the best results such as increases in your website traffic.

Strategies for Engaging with Hashtag Communities

Engaging with hashtag communities is an effective way to build relationships, increase your visibility, and attract new followers.

Here’s how you can engage with hashtag communities

  • Like and comment on posts: Regularly engage with posts that use hashtags relevant to your niche. This will help you establish yourself as an active member of the community.

  • Follow users: Follow accounts that consistently post content related to your niche and engage with them by liking and commenting on their posts.

  • Collaborate with influencers: Identify influencers who are active within the hashtag community and collaborate with them. This can help you gain exposure to a larger audience and attract new followers.


Avoiding Banned or Irrelevant Hashtags

It’s crucial to stay away from banned or irrelevant hashtags to avoid negative consequences on your account.

Instagram has strict guidelines, and using banned hashtags can lead to decreased visibility or even account suspension.

Additionally, ensure that the hashtags you use are relevant to your content and target audience.

Using irrelevant hashtags may attract the wrong audience or negatively impact your engagement.

Hashtag Strategies Best Practices

To master your hashtag strategy on Instagram, keep the following best practices in mind

  • Limit the number of hashtags: While Instagram allows up to 30 hashtags per post, it’s best to use a moderate number (between 10-15) to avoid appearing spammy.

  • Create hashtag sets: Organize your hashtags into sets based on their relevance to different types of content. This will save time and ensure consistency.

  • Regularly update your hashtag strategy: Keep up with the latest trends, popular hashtags, and changes in your industry. Update your hashtag strategy accordingly to stay relevant.


Mastering Hashtags Strategy Conclusion

Mastering a hashtag strategy on Instagram is crucial for expanding your social media reach, increasing your visibility, and attracting engaged followers.

By researching relevant hashtags, utilising a mix of popular and niche hashtags, creating branded hashtags, strategically using hashtags in captions and comments, monitoring performance, engaging with hashtag communities, and avoiding banned or irrelevant hashtags, you can optimize your Instagram presence and achieve your growth objectives.

Remember, consistency and experimentation are key to refining your hashtag strategy over time.

Happy hashtagging!

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Michelle Goodisson

Professional and dedicated all-round digital marketeer with 20 years experience in b2b and b2c marketing. Covering retail buying, product development, brand management, digital marketing, licensing, event management, PR & sponsorship.

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