It’s not enough just to know what hashtags are and to add them to your social media posts. You need a strategy. Follow these ten steps to developing a hashtag plan for your own accounts.
1. Make a list
Start out by making a list of all the hashtags you have used for your business. Then check the number of mentions on Instagram. Remove any that are too big for the number of followers you have. Remember the bigger a hashtag the less likely your content is to be seen.
2. See your followers like
Now, look at what topics your followers are enthusiastic about. Research their interests by finding out what hashtags they follow. There’s no quick way to do this, particularly if you have a large number of followers. But it is worth doing a sample selection regularly to see what new hashtags and interest areas are popping up.
3. Check out the competition
Next, go to your competition. You’re looking for accounts that serve a similar niche to you. Have a scroll through their posts and see what hashtags they are using. If you spot a hashtag you like the look of then see how the post has performed, what the content was and which other hashtags were used.
4. Go to the experts
To really get an idea of which hashtags are up and coming, go to the experts. Learn from the best what hashtags are influencers using? Best-Hashtags.com can give you a good foundation.
5. What’s related?
Think about related hashtags. If you need inspiration, then hashtigify.me helps with this.
6. Add something new
Finally, find some new tags to add that are relevant to your business. If you’re stuck then think about colours, locations, seasons and emotions.
7. Find the stars
Identify the stars. Recognise hashtags that will perform best. Look at what’s worked on your channels. Ritetag shows ratings for hashtags and indicates which ones to use right now and which ones are better used as part of a longer-term approach.
8. Check the meaning
Pause and check chosen hashtags. Make sure that your chosen hashtags mean what you think they do. This is particularly important for acronyms but applies to words as well. See what kind of content shows up when you search for the hashtags.
9. Keep it varied
Don’t use the same hashtags on every post. A strategy is not just about making a list of hashtags and using the same ones on every post. This is lazy and will lower your reach. Instead, for each post look at your list and add varied suitable hashtags.
10. Stay relevant
Finally, make sure that your hashtags are relevant to what you’re posting. When someone finds your post using a hashtag they are searching for content on that subject. Using a non-related hashtag will just disappoint a potential follower and makes you look unreliable. Plus the algorithm is smart about such things. Relevance will reap rewards in the form of organic reach.
Start creating your own hashtag strategy now. If you need help in creating and applying your strategy then get in touch.