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How to Use Hashtags Effectively on Social Media in 2023

How to Use Hashtags Effectively on Social Media in 2023

Hashtags, hashtags, hashtags. Historically they are known for their direct ability to get your content seen by more people on social media.


Is that still the case though or are they just a waste of space like a king size bed in a studio apartment?


Well, I can confidently say that hashtags do still have a purpose, but the way you need to use them has 100% changed in the last year.


Let’s break down how to use hashtags in 2023, just in time for 2024, on each platform.

Hashtag Guidelines for Instagram

The Instagram platform gives you the ability to use as many as 30 hashtags on any given post. Back in the day, a.k.a. when Instagram’s infancy when everyone only shared pics of their lunch, those 30 helped you get noticed.


Just as the content we share has evolved, so has the use of hashtags.


While you have the ability to add up to 30, keeping your posts with about three to five solid hashtags is the way to go now. (Instagram gods confirm this.)


Increase the chances of your post being seen by those searching through hashtags, or the coveted Explore page, and only use micro tags on you rposts. What I mean by this, is a hashtag with 100,000 or less uses on the platform.


This will get you higher up in the niches, which means more view potential.


More views = more potential for engagement and follows.


Hashtags with hundreds of thousands and/or millions of posts already attached to them will get lost in the noise. Creators with millions of followers will have their content with those tags prioritized and you’ll be Sad Sarah with a wasted tag. Womp womp.


Set yourself up for success and choose ones with tens of thousands of posts at most, but definitely no more than 100,000.

Hashtag Usage on LinkedIn

Oh this one is fun now. LinkedIn historically has been a platform where you only wanted to use five or six hashtags so as to not seem spammy on a professional platform.


You placed those tags in the bottom of the post and let them do their thing, in theory at least.


Not anymore friends! As LinkedIn has grown in popularity it has evolved just like our friend Instagram. No longer a place just for job searching, LinkedIn has more personal shares and LOTS more opinions than ever before.


Those opinions usually tend to have to do with professional topics (no political sparring over here), but they can be polarizing nonetheless. And what’s the point of sharing these opinions?


To spark discussion!


Taking that notion a step forward, this means hashtags are now PART OF the discussion. Rather than throwing them in the bottom, mix them into your post copy where they fit naturally.

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Hashtags on Twitter (a.k.a. X)

Ummm….is anyone on this platform anymore? Seriously though, mass exodus from the platform formerly known as Twitter has been in the news for a while thanks to its volatile owner and a wonky way of doing business.


Save your sanity, energy, and time and stick to platforms that aren’t constantly in flux.


Moving on…

Hashtags for Facebook

Before we talk about hashtags, first we need to address this question:


Is a Business Facebook page worth it anymore?


I had this question asked of me recently and the answer is simple: 100% yes.


You must have a Facebook Business page, even if you are never on Facebook. Why? Because you are probably on Instagram and running targeted ads that actually give you the ROI you want on any digital advertising you invest in requires that you have a Meta Business Account.


That being said, you do not necessarily have to post original content on that Facebook Business page.


What you can do, and I highly encourage if your ideal audience is not of the Facebook generation, is to push your Instagram content (main feed & Stories) to Facebook. It’ll keep a presence there for you without requiring a ton of extra effort.


And to the point of this article, the same hashtag rules from Instagram apply on Facebook. I’ve tried more, I’ve tested less and guess what? No statistical difference from following the same rules as Instagram.

Channing Muller is an award winning marketing & public relations consultant and the principal of DCM Communications. She works with event professionals and business owners to grow and scale their businesses with refined marketing strategies developed through one-on-one and group consulting, customized marketing programs and public relations. She has been named a "25 Young Event Pro to Watch" by Special Events magazine and "40 Under 40" by Connect Meetings. Channing is an avid runner, lover of labrador retrievers, good food, delicious drinks, and an advocate for the American Heart Association. Follow her on Instagram @ChanningMuller.

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