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How do hashtags work on social media in 2021?

by | Mar 29, 2021 | Digital Rockstars, Social media

Instagram hashtags are very powerful, so don’t turn a blind eye to them. They can skyrocket your posts, reach towards a target audience, and attract followers in your niche, whilst increasing engagement and developing your positive brand image, making it more recognisable – depending on your chosen hashtag. If you want your business to reach new heights, don’t use them too frequently or without a strategic mindset in place, this makes them pointless and inefficient.

While it can be hard to choose the right hashtags on any social media platform, you don’t have to guess, real5 Digital are always here to help. We have put together a list of how hashtags work depending on the platform to help you elevate your #SocialMediaMarketing.


Lets take it back to 2007. Twitter was the pioneer of the social media hashtag, and other platforms followed. If you didn’t know already, tweets with hashtags get x2 more engagement than those without, and the tweets with two hashtags are 55% more likely to get retweeted! The harsh truth is, to make hashtags work for marketing tweets, you must use hashtags on Twitter, but never more than 2 in a single tweet. Top tip: have a look at what’s trending! Twitter is all about jumping on current topics.


When you think of Instagram, you may think of just an app to share pictures/videos with your friends. But for entrepreneurs, it’s a powerful tool with a huge opportunity to grow your business. Unfortunately, there’s a limit of 30 hashtags per post, so be wise and very relevant as the hashtags need to match your post/business to reach a niche and specific audience. We would definitely recommend using all 30 of these – a post with at least one hashtag on Instagram gets an average of 12.6% more engagement than a post with none!


Hashtags were introduced to Facebook users 7 years ago, but it took them 6 years to blow up! Lucky for you, last year’s pandemic resulted in everyone becoming more present/active on social media, which means it’s your chance to make your posts searchable on Facebook, allowing you to get more eyes on your brand’s posts – considering Facebook handles billions of searches per day.

Categorising your content for search just makes sense. Likewise, hashtags can help highlight your specific campaign, which your followers might be interested in. Such as our real5 Digital content calendars, #Mondaymotivation. This is for you to utilise the national trending hashtags. A great example of this is #puppyday, which turned into a trending hashtag after the outburst of everyone’s pictures flooding in. 


Your audience is very relevant and specific when marketing on LinkedIn. Less is more where this platform is concerned. We recommend sticking to around 2 or 3 targeted tags per post whilst adding them to the end of your content. Struggling to find the right tags? Use the search function to look for your most likely hashtag. Begin with a broad term, we used #digitalmarketing, this has over 27 million followers. Review your hashtags every month, on many platforms to add or subtract hashtags as they can increase or decrease your engagement.

If your posting on any social media platform, without using hashtags, you’re only reaching your existing audience. So let’s open up your content and brand to tons of new, engaged users! Utilise them! It is a vital part of a strong social media marketing campaign. Following your target audience and people who follow your niche hashtags can rapidly boost the number of leads coming to your social media. 

Create a brand that your employees are proud of and check our Instagram and other social media platforms for more creative inspiration.

Don’t forget, we’re always here for a catchup – you can get in touch via our contact form

Happy Hashtagging!

Stay Safe,

#happyhashtagging #stickingtogether #socialmediamarketing