Instagram for Authors: How to Use Hashtags

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Instagram for authors

This is the part two of my five-part series on Instagram for authors.

Let’s start by talking about hashtags.

As you know, hashtags are vital to Twitter.

Likewise, for Instagram.

The good news is that you can use a lot of the same hashtags you’ve been using on Twitter for Instagram. Here’s a link to my post on 45+ Twitter hashtags for authors.

Why You Should Use Hashtags on Instagram

But let’s back up a sec.

Hashtags work two ways. They help you connect with readers and other authors, and they help readers find you.

And a hashtag is two contiguous words prefaced by the hashtag symbol #.

According to the Instagram scheduling app, Later, Instagram hashtags are an effective way to trigger more engagement with your images.

A post with at least one Instagram hashtag averages 12.6% more engagement than posts without a hashtag.

On Twitter, two hashtags are the most you want to use in a tweet. Any more than that and your tweet looks spammy.

On Instagram, you can use up to thirty hashtags on a regular post but using eleven is usually sufficient.

On Instagram Stories, you can use up to 10.

Hide the Hashtags

Some people like to hide their hashtags. Others don’t.

My take is that they can make a good caption spammy so hiding them is the better approach.

Not sure how to hide the hashtags?

  1. Upload your image.
  2. Add your caption.
  3. Once your post is published, click the speech bubble and use that area write your hashtags.

(Can you tell I love my dogs?)

You can also hide your hashtags within the caption. Here’s how:

  1. Upload your image.
  2. Add a caption.
  3. Tap the 123 key after finishing your caption.
  4. Tap return.
  5. Continue steps four to five four more times.
  6. Now your followers will need to click “more” to see your hashtags.

Here’s an example of this strategy.

Instagram for authors

Hit Publish Already? No Worries. You Can Still Add Hashtags

Yes, even after you’ve published a photo you can still sneak in a few hashtags.

  1. Just go to your feed and select the photo and caption you want to add hashtags to.
  2. Tap on the image and tap the three dots in the top right corner.
  3. Click edit.

Instagram for authors

  1. Add another hashtag.

Instagram for authors

You may be tempted to use universally popular hashtags. These do have high user counts, but that means it will be harder for your readers to find you.

Next week we will tackle Instagram Stories.

Instagram for Authors_ How to Use Hashtags

Want to know all of my best social media marketing tips? Get a copy of Social Media Just for Writers.

Social Media Just for Writers 2nd Edition

Well written, well researched – well thought out. This book is a must have!

Ryshia Kennie 

Frances CaballoAuthor of this blogFrances Caballo is an author and social media strategist and manager for writers. She wrote several social media books including Social Media Just for Writers and The Author’s Guide to Goodreads. Her focus is on helping authors surmount the barriers that keep them from flourishing online, building their platform, and finding new readers. Her clients have included authors of every genre and writers’ conferences. Not sure how you’re doing online? Sign up for her free email course.

Online Book Marketing Strategies for Writers

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