Using the Right Hashtags

Bookstagram is hard.  It’s super fun don’t get me wrong but it is also very frustrating.   Last month I talked about how to use captions to increase engagement.   Today I’m going to share some hashtag tips.    I certainly don’t have any magical answers, nor do I have any clue how the algorithm works.  These suggestions are just ones that have worked for me.  

Why Hashtags are Important

The reason we use hashtags is that people use them to search and that is how they find our photos. Generally, more than 90% of my reach comes from hashtags.  If you have a business or creator account you can check your stats, but they play a big role in who sees your account.  

 

Think about the Numbers

Take #bookstagram, it has 39.6 million posts.  That is a lot of posts, and so chances are your post is going to get lost.  Go ahead and use it, but try balancing it out will some smaller ones.    For example, things like  #Booklover and  (13.2M) #bookaholic (5.4 M) might be better options for you. 

Tailor Hashtags to Your Post

The hashtag you use should reflect your post. For example, the genre of the book you’re featuring: #historicalfiction,  #yareads, #yafantasy, or #romancereads are great choices.  The name of the books is another great choice.  But maybe you have a candle in the photo (#bookishcandles) or flowers (#bookandflowers).  Think about what your photo is and then add tags based on that.  

What Do you Search For

 I often search for posts for book recommendations and inspiration.  The genre tags are great for catching people who may be looking for recommendations, but so  #bookrecommendations and #fivestarread.  I have searched things like book colors #redbooks or #bluebooks.  What do you normally search for? Perhaps you can incorporate that into your tags.  

Trial and Error
At the end of the day, this is all about trial and error.  I have heard that using the exact same tags every day can hurt you.  I usually have two sets of basic tags that I switch between and then fill the rest with tags that match my photo.  If you’d liked to maybe even try monitory which hashtags seem to get you the most impressions.   

 

Do you have any favorite Hashtags?  What about any tricks you’ve learned?

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