How to use Hashtags to Improve Your Instagram Marketing Strategy | See Girl Work Blog

How to use Hashtags to Improve Your Instagram Marketing Strategy

Developing a hashtag strategy as part of your Instagram marketing is the key to gaining followers, increasing likes and creating engagement.

With the right tactics, Instagram can help you build awareness, boost engagement and drive traffic to your business. But developing a hashtag strategy as part of your Instagram marketing is the key to gaining followers, increasing likes and creating engagement.

We started the Instagram account for See Girl Work just before Christmas 2015. But I didn’t start getting strategic about my Instagram marketing until I discovered Later, an app that helps me visually plan and schedule my Instagram posts.

This was a complete game changer for my business so I wanted to share this great app with my readers.

Before Later, I would save photos to my photo app one at a time. Crop them one at a time. Upload them to Instagram when I thought it was a good time of the day. Then hover over my iPhone keypad in an effort to come up with some clever caption.

Then I’d clumsily spit out a few random hashtags. Hoping someone would find us.

Now with Later, we can do everything from our desktops. I can drag and drop photos in bulk, schedule when they should go out, easily craft captions directly from the blog, plus research and use hashtags appropriate for the business.

We can even preview how the photos will look in the stream before they are posted to make sure all the photos are on brand.

I reached out to the team at Later to find out more about Instagram marketing and asked them to send over a few quick tips that I could share with my readers. They were kind enough to send the following info most of which I didn’t even know.

Why You Should Strategically Hashtag

Tagging your posts strategically to optimize your Instagram engagement will help you grow your community and network. Using Later simplifies this process and makes it less time consuming so you can focus on creating great content.

Even if you tag your photo with one hashtag, these posts will get 12.6% more engagement than photos without any hashtags.

Research Your Industry and Community Members

Before you hashtag all your posts it’s important to do a bit of research on the type of tags you may want to apply. Tagging your photos with random hashtags is a waste of space and looks spammy and may turn off members of your community.

See what your community members are hashtagging. It’s critical to immerse yourself in the type of content that your community members or target audience are creating so you create content that they will want to engage with.

The Later Search & Repost feature helps you:

1. Search for hashtags and users, to see what your community is posting and how they are tagging their photos

2. Repost content from your community with the proper photo credit

Add Captivating Photos, Clever Captions and Relevant Hashtags

A picture is worth a thousand words but crafting a witty caption for your Instagram post takes your engagement one step further.

Whether you’re posting a composed caption or just adding a few clever emoji’s, creating a caption to go with your post along with a few strategic hashtags is one of the best ways to grow your Instagram community.

The Later Media Library helps you:

1. Create and save a caption with relevant hashtags

2. Bulk upload images and schedule posts weeks in advance

Instagram only allows 30 hashtags per post, but it’s better to add 5-11 strategic and relevant hashtags to each post than it is to add popular or generic hashtags.

Posting more niche hashtags in favour of trending tags will also help to boost your engagement.

If you’re posting to a popular tag, the feed of the tagged images is constantly updated and your content won’t stand out as much as it would using a lesser known hashtag.

#Getwiththeprogram

Now we strategically plan a few weeks ahead, the captions are more in tune with the brand messaging, the hashtags we use are getting us found faster. And I’m finally starting to feel like we’re building a real social community.

In fact, we’ve gained a new client just from Instagram! Even if you don’t use Later, these are still great tips that will help you to improve your Instagram marketing.

Need More Tips?

Read more about Later and how to use hashtags to grow your community in their recent blog post: The Ultimate Guide to Using Hashtags.

To get the most out of using the app and receive 1:1 training on the key features join the LTGR Visual Creators Workshop by emailing: support@latergram.me. Plus just for my readers, sign up for a Premium plan and receive 50% off for the first 6 months.

*The post is NOT sponsored, but my honest opinion. This post was written in collaboration with Later.

 

Alethea Robinson

Founder & Blogger-in-Chief, See Girl Work

Alethea Robinson is the founder of See Girl Work. With over 10 years of marketing experience, she specializes in campaign execution, project management, team management and trade show planning and events. Alethea is also skilled at developing digital marketing content including blog posts, interviews, editorials and social media.

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