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How to Get More Reach with the Right Instagram Hashtags

Twitter may have invented social media hashtags, but Instagram put them on the map. Instagram hashtags are vital, especially if you want to increase your reach to connect with more members of your target audience.

These days, Instagram hashtags not only categorize your content and makes it discoverable by users, but they are an effective way to get more followers, increase engagement and expand reach and brand awareness.

If you’d like to tap into the platform’s potential to reach a huge audience, upping your hashtag game is the way to go, especially now that users can follow entire hashtags just like they can follow specific users. It’s essential to be strategic, creative, and intentional about your hashtag research and usage.

As organic reach declines and paid impressions rise with the algorithm changes put in place to push brands to pay for exposure, hashtags still represent the single best way to organically drive your social marketing campaigns, by leveraging your Instagram posts to boost reach on the platform.

In this post, we’re going to go over everything you need to know about getting more reach with the right Instagram hashtags in 2021.

This video by our pals at Hootsuite also gives a good introductory explainer to Instagram hashtags:

Everything You Need to Know About Instagram Hashtags

Instagram hashtags are essentially clickable and searchable topics created by adding unbroken text to the # sign. You can add them to posts, Stories, and IGTV videos.

When Instagram users click on a hashtag, they’re taken to a feed of popular posts and a feed of recent posts using that hashtag. As of a few years ago, users can also now follow hashtags like they’d follow an account, giving brands an in to show up in users’ feeds even if they aren’t following said brand.

Hashtags are one of the easiest ways to expand your reach quickly on Instagram. The Instagram algorithm takes hashtags into account when determining which users would want to see what content in their “suggested” content in-feed or in their Explore section, and users will sometimes browse relevant hashtags to find content that’s relevant to them.

The Top 50 Instagram Hashtags in 2022

According to Hootsuite, these are the top Instagram hashtags in 2022 based on the number of posts in which they’re used:

  1. #love (1.835B posts)

  2. #instagood (1.150B posts)

  3. #fashion (812.7M posts)

  4. #photooftheday (797.3M posts)

  5. #beautiful (661.0M posts)

  6. #art (649.9M posts)

  7. #photography (583.1M posts)

  8. #happy (578.8M posts)

  9. #picoftheday (570.8M posts)

  10. #cute (569.1M posts)

  11. #follow (560.9M posts)

  12. #tbt (536.4M posts)

  13. #followme (528.5M posts)

  14. #nature (525.7M posts)

  15. #like4like (515.6M posts)

  16. #travel (497.3M posts)

  17. #instagram (482.6M posts)

  18. #style (472.3M posts)

  19. #repost (471.4M posts)

  20. #summer (454.2M posts)

  21. #instadaily (444.0M posts)

  22. #selfie (422.6M posts)

  23. #me (420.3M posts)

  24. #friends (396.7M posts)

  25. #fitness (395.8M posts)

  26. #girl (393.8M posts)

  27. #food (391.9M posts)

  28. #fun (385.6M posts)

  29. #beauty (382.8M posts)

  30. #instalike (374.6M posts)

  31. #smile (364.5M posts)

  32. #family (357.7M posts)

  33. #photo (334.6M posts)

  34. #life (334.5M posts)

  35. #likeforlike (328.2M posts)

  36. #music (316.1M posts)

  37. #ootd (308.2M posts)

  38. #follow4follow (290.6M posts)

  39. #makeup (285.3M posts)

  40. #amazing (277.5M posts)

  41. #igers (276.5M posts)

  42. #nofilter (268.9M posts)

  43. #dog (264.0M posts)

  44. #model (254.7M posts)

  45. #sunset (249.8M posts)

  46. #beach (246.8M posts)

  47. #instamood (238.1M posts)

  48. #foodporn (229.4M posts)

  49. #motivation (229.1M posts)

  50. #followforfollow (227.9M posts)

It’s so important to note, though, that while these posts are used the most frequently in 2021, it doesn’t mean that they’re going to be the most effective at driving engagement, reach, or followers for your content.

The “likeforlike” hashtags, for example, often won’t get you a ton of engagement, just followers who only want followers back in most cases. They aren’t necessarily the kind of followers you want, because they likely won’t belong to your target audience. Similarly, plenty of users love to add an #instamood to their post but don’t actually go check out the topic too frequently.


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