June 25, 2018

Hashtag Happy

Are you getting tired of talking about Instagram? I hope not, because there is so much opportunity on this channel, and I want to help you take advantage of it in support of your art business. This week we're digging into one of the best features for discovery (and being discovered) – Hashtags. While several social platforms use hashtags, I would argue that they are the most functional and beneficial on Instagram. The trick is how you use them and which ones you use. You could turn anything into a hashtag, but I want to help you categorize these "keywords" and pick the best for your content. You need to balance relevance and popularity so people will see your posts when they search or follow that hashtag. Below I've outlined the different types of hashtags you might use so you can better brainstorm with each post what to include to increase your exposure on Instagram. #LetsDoIt

For those of you less familiar with hashtags, here's a quick overview:

  • What: Any term or phrase starting with a # (no spaces)
  • Why: Discoverability; Tracking Content
  • When: Every time you post (In the feed or to your story)
  • Where: At the end of the caption or in a comment on the post
  • How Many: No more than 30; usually 5-10 is best practice

Types of Hashtags:

1. Branded Hashtags
  • Your name or your company – #CraftingExposure
  • Create & share the one you want people to use.
  • Allows you to track content about your art business.
  • Also a great way to collect user generated content (UGC).
  • Commonly used for Instagram contests as well.

2. Descriptive Hashtags
  • If someone couldn't see your image, how would you describe it?
  • Subject Matter terms help people find art relevant to their interests.
  • Medium keywords categorize your art by style and technique.
  • Aim for not too board or too niche to be discoverable.
  • Check usage numbers for the variations to pick best option.
  • #OilPainting  |  #DogArt  |  #NatureInspired  |  #HandmadeJewelry

3. Location Hashtags

4. Community Hashtags
  • Designed to connect virtual communities around specific topics.
  • Can be used for short term campaigns or longer term.
  • May be associated with a challenge like #Inktober
  • Can also be a prompt for what you're sharing – #MeettheMaker

5. Holiday Hashtags

6. Feature Hashtags

7. Humorous Hashtags
  • Phrases strung together for comedic effect.
  • Not necessarily popular or ideal for discoverability.
  • Can go viral & inspire similar shares.

The possibilities are limitless. Get creative with what applies to your posts. While you may have a set of 5-10 hashtags that you use for every post about your art, be sure to add customized ones based on what's unique about that visual so you can see what works. Instagram Business Profiles get insights on how many people find your content based on hashtags, so keep an eye on that. If you need help brainstorming, #IdLovetoHelp!