The Lokal Guide to Creating Hashtags Like a Total Pro

by Trey Scales

You need to improve your hashtag game. Fortunately, your favorite social media guru is here to help. Okay, guru miiiight be a stretch considering I only have around 1,000 followers combined on my personal social media platforms. BUT, I’ve been trained by the pros here at Lokal Media House and I have experience creating over 2,000 posts for our roster of clients across the United States. I hope these tips come in handy when you’re working on your social media hashtags and captions.

The hashtag is here to stay with more importance than ever before. You may be thinking, “But Trey, I’ve tried using hashtags before and they don’t work.” Wrong. They work. It’s possible you just haven’t been using the right ones. The key is to make sure when you use the tags, you’re reaching the best audience and that you’re doing your research. Follow these tips and you’ll be golden.

Tip #1 – Go Public

Make sure your account is public and not private. If you have an Instagram business account you’re already set. If not, double-check. Hashtags are only functional if you have a public account.

Tip #2. Keep Your Captions Clean

Not, like, completely G-Rated. I just mean never (and I mean NEVER) use hashtags in your captions. Even if there’s a fire. (If you understand that movie reference we can be friends.) This only applies to Instagram, but it just looks bad.

Tip #3: Can I Make a Comment?

Another way to keep your captions clean is to Include your hashtags in the comments section of your posts, that way they are seen as a “comment number one” to viewers instead of a long, ugly list of hashtags. If you use Buffer, you can upgrade your account for this feature. Otherwise, just post in the comment right after you publish your post.

Tip #4: Focus, Padawan!

Narrow down your hashtags to words that are relevant to your content or business. This is extremely important. For example, if I were Nike I would use hashtags like #shoes #sports #athletics and not #jeans, #food, etc. It’s also a good idea to see which hashtags your competition is using. Get a list, then track which ones are most popular.

Tip #5: Healthy Competition

Use tools like to track the popularity of hashtags. This is important. The more popular the hashtag is, the more likely someone will come across your page and turn into a paying customer. If you find a hashtag that has only a few hundred uses over the past 5 years, it’s best to avoid it. Unless…

Tip #6: Custom=Cool

It’s often important to create an association of your brand with a custom hashtag. The less it has been used the better. That way, when people come across this tag, they’ll be led to an album full of your content.

Follow these 6 tips and you’ll be well on your way to having a well-oiled social media page. It’s not that hard but you’d be surprised at what I’ve come across. No Elizabeth, a picture of your $13.99 salad on my Instagram feed is not #photography #aworkofart #greaterthansex and frankly, nobody cares.

Well, folks, that’s all for today. I’m approaching my word limit and when I go too far over they make me sleep on the roof. Happy hashtagging! If you have any other questions, reach out and we’d be glad to chat about social with you.

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