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How To Use Hashtags On Instagram

Featured on @instagram weekend hashtag p by TvR, on Flickr
Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 2.0 Generic License  by  TvR 

You have a greater chance of connecting with Instagram users who share your interests if you place a hashtag with your photo uploads.

Instagram, the photo sharing and social networking application for iOS and Android, is a wonderful way to meet new people who are also as visually driven as you are. Because the app is largely image-centric, you actually get to say more. After all, a picture is worth a thousand words.

Using Hashtags on Instagram

To tag your photo with a hashtag, just follow these simple steps.

1. Open Instagram on your mobile device and snap a photo. Choose a filter (or a design with which you want your photo to appear).

2. Type you chosen hashtag in the caption box. Upload your photo.

3. If you want to place a hashtag on a previous photo, just click on the comments and post your tag in the comments box.

4. Once you have tagged the photo, clicking the hashtag will lead you to the other users who have also used the same hashtag for their photos.

Choosing The Right Hashtag

The purpose of posting a hashtag is to connect your photo with the uploads of other Instagram users, or perhaps even to make new online friends.

Let’s check out an example of photos that turn up for the hashtag #walkinghome.

Do you instagram? You know I made it a v by zaneology, on Flickr
Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic License  by  zaneology 

Here are tips to picking a hashtag that will make the most connections or get the most ‘Likes’.

- Be as descriptive and specific as possible.

For example, if you’re a huge ‘Game of Thrones’ fan, the hashtag #gameofthrones will connect you to specifically to other Instagram users who are also fans than the hashtag #HBOshows. Similarly, the sample hashtag #ilovecake will lead you to like-minded cake lovers more than #sweets.

- Observe how other users apply hashtags.

It’s likely that your interest has already been assigned a hashtag that is widely used by Instagram users. To gain more connections, try to ride on these hashtags to meet more people. Of course, it is needless to say that your photo uploads should be relevant to the hashtag.

- Use your name.

Appending a hashtag with your username (example: #JohnDoe) will allow other users to see what you have posted so far in one page. This is a strategy commonly used by brand marketers and photographers who want to showcase their work online.


– Tagged photos of private accounts will not appear in public tag pages.
– You can use numbers, letters and underscores on your hashtags, but no special characters.
– You can place a hashtag only on your own photos, not other users’.
– The maximum number of hashtags allowed per photo is 30. Beyond that, the photo will fail to load.

Simply posting photos and hashtags on Instagram will likely get you likes, but what will really build a large network is your comments. When you share photos, don’t forget to place a short description so other users will know what it’s about. Engage with others and make friends by commenting on their photos, as well.

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Carli 13-12-2012, 21:38

Do you just put the number sign and then type a word?

ines 02-03-2013, 17:34

Do u just put the number sign and then type the word?

roderick jackson 24-03-2013, 07:51

What is the most populat hashtag that viewers are using

Chloé Carle 04-04-2013, 14:20

Very interesting and useful article, but I have a question about the “use your name” tip. While I understand the usefulness of a name hashtag for a brand, as other people might be using it as well, I do not quite get it for, say, a photographer. What’s the difference between making a search with the photographer’s name hashtag and just going to this person’s profile in order to see all of his pics on one page?

Heading Off To A Conference? Instagram That! | Sexy Social Media 25-06-2013, 06:02

[…] leaders in your industry. Make sure that each photo contains a caption and several relevant hashtags, including a tag for the convention. After all, hashtags are the number one way that new people […]

Profile photo of LockDataTech
LockDataTech 31-07-2013, 07:58

I would like to share a “feed” of all photos posted on instagram under a specific hashtag on my twitter, facebook, and linkedin pages. Is this possible?
Thank you for your help :)

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