How to Optimize Your Hashtags to Increase Post Engagement

Remember when the hashtag was called the pound sign? And the only purpose it really served was to sit on a little button on your phone, just waiting to be used? Well thanks to Twitter that little symbol, previously known as an ~octothorp,~ has become a powerful marketing tool, especially for small brands like you and I. 

That powerful little symbol determines if your content is being seen. So now that we know how important hashtags are,  here are some things to consider when choosing  your hashtags.

Are your hashtags:


Generic hashtags are very broad, high traffic tags that the majority of users have at some point used. These include tags like #creative #design or #photo. Think of them as your foot in the door.


Community Based.

There are many brands that have developed community-based hashtags. Consider The Rising Tide Society or Jenna Kutcher. Both #risingtide and #goaldiggers represent communities of small business owners who believe in the advice and expertise of their creators.  Not only can you find other like-minded profiles by using community-based hashtags, but you can also reach potential clients who are also interested in these communities.


Location Based.

If you’ve ever looked for a service, you’ve likely googled “photographers in my city” or “best florist in my state.” Similarly, using location hashtags will help people in your area find you. It will also give you an opportunity to rank as a popular account in your area, reaching more people.


BONUS TIP : Don’t use the same hashtags for every post, that’ll get you shadow banned. Instead choose a couple categories for your hashtags (food, home, style, etc.) and apply those hashtags to related posts!


Low Density.

Think of low-density hashtags as a long form keyword in your niche. It should be specific to your niche and reach a small, but targeted group of people.  These hashtags should have less than 100K posts, but more than 10K. For example, if you’re using small business hashtags, #smallbusiness has about 17 million posts – way too many for it to be considered low density. However, #smallbusinesstips only has 77K posts, giving you a much higher chance of being seen and ranking as a top post. Using low-density hashtags gives you an opportunity to find profiles that fit your ideal follower.


High Density. 

Similar to generic hashtags, high density hashtags will have a lot of posts. However, they will also be industry specific. Think of them as a niche, short form keyword. The hashtag #smallbusiness would qualify as high density.


If you’re willing to take a little time to research industry hashtags, you have the potential to reach an entire new audience. Using a couple hashtags from each category will give you a well rounded, specific group of hashtags that will appeal to your ideal profile an increase your following.

This post compares keywords to hashtags – learn more about keywords here!