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Written by Sue Zimmerman

February 24, 2015 at 6:00 am

5 Ways Your Business Can Leverage Instagram Hashtags

Hashtags help businesses expand their reach, build their brand and establish a community when used properly. Use them to put your content in front of people searching for keywords associated with your brand or industry.

Implementing an Instagram Hashtag strategy with the proper Dos & Don’ts (outlined below) can build your visibility and business exponentially.

How it works

People and businesses find content, clients, information, customers, partners and contributors by searching hashtags of interest.  Place the hashtag symbol (#) in front of any keyword or phrase relative to who you are trying to reach. It will then become searchable by users.


Screen Shot Notes


Hashtags help social media platforms organize and categorize images, videos and content. They also create a way for your target audience or ideal client to discover your content which otherwise gets lost in the quickly changing newsfeed.


5 Ways to Optimize Hashtags for your business:

  • Categories – Hashtag categories relevant to your post or business i.e. #smallbiz #entrepreneur #socialstrategy

Screen Shot Hashtags

  • Location – Geotag or add locations relevant to your post or business i.e. where you are posting from or the town/city in which your business is based
  • Emotions – Hashtag how what you do makes you feel, how you are feeling that day or what feeling your topic evokes. i.e. #independent #successful
  • Events – Hashtag the event you are attending/posting from or create a hashtag for an event you have created and are promoting
  • Products – Hashtag your product’s name, type of product it is and/or what it is used for


3 Dos of Hashtagging:

  • Create your own

 Custom Hashtag

Hashtags are a great way to generate buzz around what you are doing and your specific brand.

  • Be relevant

Once you’ve researched some of your ideas, choose those that are memorable and important in order to create staying power with your followers.

  • Refresh

Get more use out of older posts that are still relevant by reposting using fresh hashtags or reusing the best ones you posted originally.


3 Don’ts of Hashtagging:

  • Do not hijack others

Do not just use a hashtag because it has a huge amount of traffic unless it is relevant to your content.

  • Do not overuse

Don’t weigh your posts down with too many hashtags. This reads like desperate marketing.

  • Don’t create a long, complex hashtag.

Overly complicated hashtags are not search-friendly or commonly used.  Overly laden posts will get buried quickly rather than garnering attention.

So let’s find the conversations where our target audience shows up, add value to those conversations and finally start to build up a relationship that leads to awareness and ultimately a business transaction. ALL through using that little # symbol!


Sue Zimmerman

Sue B. Zimmerman, aka the #InstagramGal and #TheInstagramExpert, is a master at Instagram for Business. She teaches entrepreneurs, business execs, and marketing professionals how powerful Instagram for business can be. Sue B. is the founder of the online Instagram course Insta-Results, the author of the #1 eBook Instagram Basics for your Business, a Speaker and Business Coach. She also is the founder of SueB.Do & Sue B. Zimmerman Enterprise.With her extensive knowledge of social media, her ease and comfort with people, and her creative eye for branding, Sue B. is the master at connecting and empowering others to be successful entrepreneurs and marketing gurus. She’s found a really awesome niche teaching social media to clients and absolutely loves the power of Instagram. It has helped her to build her own network and increase sales and she is inspired to teach others what she knows. She also helps entrepreneurs launch and grow their own businesses. By embracing new technologies, there is a sea of possibility waiting for savvy entrepreneurs to navigate.

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