If you are asking, “how many hashtags is too many?,” you are likely using too many. As with all trends and tools, they can get quickly out of hand and overused. Using too many hashtags makes them ineffective and a # becomes a logo or symbol instead of a marketing tool. That’s why we decided to announce our Hashtag X Outerwear collaboration. Available now!
All jokes aside, we need to remember what the purpose of a hashtag is, without going as far back as referring to it as the “pound” sign. Hashtags were launched on social media to connect people around a common idea. So we suggest using no more than 7 hashtags on Instagram. Hashtags on Intagram are best used to engage with new people as they find you through the “explore” section or by clicking on a particular hashtag and locating you in the search results. So ensure that, first and foremost, you are using accurate hashtags for your business and your post type – i.e. do not #love #puppy on a promotional photo of kitchen goods. As for Facebook, when was the last time you saw or used a hashtag on Facebook? Exactly. So we suggest not using them there. As for Twitter, best practice is to use just hashtags max, as they are most effective when you stepping into a conversation or aiming to get one started. ie. – #anythingtodowithtrump.
Recent news of Shadow Banning, a.k.a. Instagram making your hashtags ‘un-discoverable,’ has us all questioning the effectiveness of our hashtag strategies on the whole. The strategy being, for most of us, using #’s to reach new audiences. If you have a Shadow Ban implemented on your posts, it means your images won’t show up in hashtag feeds of anyone who DOESN’T follow you, obviously reducing the reach of your account and making it much harder to find new people and increase your reach.
When Instagram learned of this, they suggested that users simply ‘not rely on the # strategy,’ and instead gave a few other tips on how to improve your Instagram-for-Business marketing. Their tips included:
- Have a distinct visual presence.
- Be a storyteller.
- Put thought into your creativity.
Our advice? Quite simply, use hashtags how they were meant to be used and rely more heavily on creating killer content instead of on debating the effectiveness and ideal quantity of hashtags.