When I decided to take a look into hashtags the other day I hadn’t realized the Pandora’s box I was opening for myself. I can see it now…😓 I will immerse myself for months into this topic just as I had for Google My Business.
My family will be leaving food at my office door and no one will see me for weeks at a time. I’ll emerge some months later transformed into this half hashtag half human being caught in a spiderweb 🕸 with Uncle Francois (One of my favorite Vincent Price characters) aghast in horror while Inspector Charas flattens me with a large rock.
Well… May as well start the transmogrification (I love that word – I learned it in a writing poetry class in college. It’s from a great poem called Janet Waking).
What are the most popular Instagram hashtags?
As of July 2020, the 40 most popular Instagram hashtags are as follows:
I felt it was important to post this list for you to see that while they get millions of posts a day, the top hashtags will probably not help you in your marketing efforts.
Look at it this way. If the hashtag #love has been used in 1.2 billion posts (that’s a lot!) how will your post about the new decking material you just used stand out? Just because it’s popular doesn’t mean you should use it.
What types of hashtags should I use?
There are literally millions of hashtags on Instagram. You may ask, “How do I choose the right hashtags for my campaign?” and that would be a great question.
I think you should start with understanding the types of hashtags that will help you in marketing your product or services.
For our purposes, I have decided on 5 types of hashtags that research has shown to be effective when marketing. They are: community, subject, niche, location, and brand.
By far the community type of hashtag encompasses the lion’s share of subcategories. We’ll look at community as an association or interest group you’re a part of such as #contractorsofinsta or #homerenovationlife.
This type of hashtag will be used to tag the things your talking about in your post. A good hashtag for this blog for instance would be #hashtags. You can use things like #deckbuilding or #plumberstips.
We know you’re part of a community or interest group from your community hashtag, now use niche hashtags to attract the specific audience you’re looking for such as #roofingcontractor or #builders.
Most small businesses do their business, well… locally. Be sure to include hashtags that will attract your local audience like #staffordva or #fxbg.
Create a hashtag for your brand like #staffordtechnologies (found this hashtag from something I posted 5 years ago!). It may take a while – a long while – for it to pick up steam but once it does it will allow your followers to see all the things you post rather than just seeing posts from the other hashtags they are following. In other words, a plumber may be following us for #marketingforplumbers but may get just as much value from a post we made for #deckbuildermarketing.
How do I use this to create a hashtag strategy for Instagram?
This is just the beginning of the journey. We still need to talk about how many hashtags to use and how to find the best hashtags.
For now, take a look at what you’re currently doing and see if these five types of hashtags are included. If not, add one or two that seem to make sense for now and we’ll see if we can’t help you find the best hashtags to use in our next blog and on our next episode of Digital Marketing in 60 Seconds or Less.