How to Choose the Right Instagram Hashtag

Dmytro Polishchuk
Dmytro Polishchuk
Content writer and blog editor at PromoRepublic
≈ 5 min read
Upd. on: 2 Aug 2021

Table of Contents:

  • Introduction
  • How to Choose the Best Hashtags
  • How Many Hashtags You Should Use
  • Brand Hashtags and Their Value
  • Instagram Hashtag Tips and Best Practices


The hashtag was created to categorize content. That’s common knowledge. But what about practice? What is this for? Remember searching for the perfect gift to give your beloved on St. Valentine Day? What are your actions if you are an experienced (or even not) Instagram user? Imagine, you need the best box of chocolates in the NYC. You write the #chocolatesnys hashtag into the Instagram search bar and the magic begins!

Instagram wall gif

Now you can choose the photo, which you like best and see where this pic was taken (geo location) or the brand itself – you will visit the instagram page of the company, which produces these very sweets that you want to buy.

TechCrunch says Instagram doubled monthly users to 500M in 2 years, and sees 300M visits daily! Take a look at these statistics:

Instagram monthly active users statistics

Here’s a look at Instagram’s rise:

  • December 2010: 1 million users
  • June 2011: 5 million users
  • April 2012: 1 million Android signups in the first 24 hours
  • February 2013: 100 million monthly users
  • March 2014: 200 million monthly users
  • September 2015: 400 million monthly users
  • June 2016: 500 million monthly users, 300 million daily users

Nowadays, it’s incredibly easy for your potential customers to research and make decisions based on Instagram hashtags.

Instagram users are offered loads of suggestions every single day. On the one hand, it’s great for you to have the opportunity to show them a photo catalog of your goods, and on the other hand – the competition is tough. More and more companies (especially if these companies can visualize their products/services) have started to market on Instagram. You think that this network is already too overcrowded? There is a solution:

  • Only content of high quality
  • Carefully selected target audience (don’t sell death metal t shirts to Baby Boomers)
  • Wise posting schedule
  • Geo location rules!
  • Correct and appropriate hashtags

We will discuss when to use hashtags, but you are also welcome to read my article

on 5 Recent Instagram Hacks That Will Boost Your Brand Awareness and Increase Traffic.

How to Choose the Best Hashtags

I offer you 5 ways to choose hashtags that I use for my clients’ Instagram campaigns:

  • Use hashtags that your competitors use
  • Consider related hashtags
  • You’d better ask Instagram
  • Use Holiday related hashtags

Use hashtags that your competitors use

Being a successful marketer means you know your competitors’ social media campaigns. And in our case, it is to know the hashtags your competitors use. Analyze them, pick the most successful examples and implement them into your Instagram campaign.

Think it’s too difficult? Nah! Subscribe for FREE to find out more about related hashtags:

Chocolate hashtag on Instagram

Consider related hashtags

Find related hashtags for the topic of your post. Ask yourself “What keywords do they can use when searching for my goods or service?”

top 10 chocolate hashtags

You’d better ask Instagram

  1. Type in a keyword into the search bar
  2. Select the Tags tab

chocolate hashtag instagram suggestions

Instagram will give you a list of all the hashtags with that keyword as well as a number of posts that are tagged with it. Remember: a large number may mean a large number of people following that hashtag, but it also means there’s a ton of content your post could get buried in. Experiment with a combination of popular and niche hashtags.

Use Holiday related hashtags

What is the best day for promotion? Or what day will promise you the biggest engagement? Exactly – holidays and special events. It’ll be stupid to narrow your holiday campaigns, which you will season with appropriate hashtags, just to Christmas, Easter or other well known holidays. So, grab a pen and paper and sit down to brainstorm which keywords would be of interest to your audience. Let’s imagine, we sell chocolate. (I definitely need to have some, because you see, I turned the whole tutorial into sweet paragraphs!:))

So, what special days, events, and trends may work for this type of business? You probably think, it will take me several hours to prepare the list of these specialities. Nope, I will use the only one calendar and its content ideas to show you the schedule of holidays and events for our “chocolate” business.

You see, one week and 4! FOUR extra opportunities to post! 4 great special events, which will fit many businesses! With PromoRepublic, the sky is the limit!

Try FREE Trial

Once you’ve come up with the ideas, search for them on Instagram to see how popular they are and who they’re being used by. You can play with the word order to find the best hashtags. Let’s do this for our events:

instagram hashtag examples

How Many Hashtags You Should Use?

The more the better? You don’t think it’s totally right, but there’s some truth about it:

hashtag statistics - average engagement per post

According to this infographics, posts with 2 hashtags and a location tag receive the biggest engagement.

Tagging your photos and videos with the most popular hashtags will probably gain you new followers, but they’ll likely be the wrong kind of followers—spammers or people only interested in being followed back. And using too many hashtags might dilute your message and make you seem desperate. Let the content of the post decide how many and which hashtags to use.

Brand Hashtags and Their Value

A brand hashtag is unique to your business or campaign. It could be as simple as your company name, tagline, or the name of one of your products. It will also organize all the posts that are tagged with it on a hashtag page.

Take a look at this hashtag page of @bellasentials, PromoRepublic’s client. This page is a a great example of both correct using our posts templates and wise running social media campaigns! No doubt, their results impress!

bellasentials hashtags on instagram

Instagram Hashtag Tips and Best Practices

  • #Don’tstringtoomanywordstogetherwithasinglehashtag

It’s especially about your brand hashtags. Keep them short, simple, and easy to spell. That way your fans and customers can easily remember it. You want to be specific, but something like #PromoRepublicthebestcontentcalendarforfreelancers will definitely fail!:)

  • Don’t #spam #with #hashtags

Instagram lets you work with up to 30 hashtags per post. But if you try to sneak a popular hashtag into your post that isn’t relevant to the content you will muddle your message—or worse, you will be exposed as a spammer.

  • Hide your Instagram hashtags

If you don’t want to clutter your captions, include them in the comment section below your post. Once other people leave a few comments, the hashtags won’t be viewable.

  1. In the caption or comment box tap the 123 key.
  2. Select return and then enter a period.
  3. Repeat those steps at least five times. Instagram caps off captions after three lines so the hashtags won’t be viewable to users unless they tap the more option.

flothemes hashtags on instagram

Alright, get out there and start hashtagging!


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