When you first start on Instagram with your business and you’re not a digital native it might seem confusing with all those captions and hashtags. Some businesses choose therefor not to use any hashtags at all while others just put random hashtags on their posts. Never thinking about it as a strategic marketing tool itself.

First of all what are hashtags? Hashtags are like a label you put on your picture on Instagram. If you search for a specific hashtag, for example #Bali you will find a collection of all the pictures with the hashtag ‘Bali’. Kind of like a photo album.

But how do you use hashtag as a marketing strategy?

Brand and Campaign Hashtag

If you use your brand as a hashtag like #swellmediaagency you will have a collection with all the pictures you have ever posted and all the pictures you were mentioned in. If you are restaurant or café owner this can be quite useful. You often find very good pictures from your customers, which you can use for on your social media account and customers are mostly happy if you re-post their content and mention them. You can also use your brand hashtag as signature tag – just make sure that the tag you create is unique to your business.

If you have a current marketing campaign or just simply want to start a contest you use a campaign hashtag. Choose a short and unique name and do your research. If they’re already popular on Instagram (or Twitter) use a different hashtag. If you started a contest (e.g. #swellgameday) and need to choose a winner, the campaign hashtag is perfect for you because you will see all the pictures in the one place. You just have to make sure that your customers are actually using the correct hashtag.

Trending hashtags

By using a trending hashtag on your content, you can potentially get your pictures seen to a massive audience – 15 seconds of fame. But if the hashtag is not relevant to your business don’t use it then. If you feel lost and have no idea where to look for popular hashtags you can always do some research for example on hashtags.org.

Content hashtags

Most of your hashtags can be defined as content hashtags. They are not brand related but are just simply related to your picture. They improve the SEO of your post.

Let’s say you are a restaurant owner and are posting a picture from your restaurant with a nice sunset view in Bali you want to put on hashtags like #Bali #Sunset #Balisunset and so on.

When it comes to choosing the best hashtags it’s important to know your customers, popular hashtags or even hashtags used in your local area. As Bali based media agency we know everything about relevant hashtags for local businesses and can help you improve your social media posts.

Sidenote: For this blog post the word hashtag was used exactly 30 times. ;)