The Ultimate Guide to Instagram Hashtags in 2017

When it comes to using Instagram hashtags, there are a lot of misconceptions in the social media scene.

Hashtags have the potential to grow your account’s reach and get you more followers, but it will only work if you know how to use them efficiently

 

Content is what will help you retain and gain followers.

Hashtags are what will allow people to find you at scale.

Both are extremely important.

Hashtags are the most effective way to get your content out there and allow people to find you organically.
 


What does using a hashtag accomplish & how does it work?


When you use a hashtag on your photo, you are labeling (or categorizing) your photo in that category. That category also has every other post with that hashtag in it, and you are competing with them for attention.

 

Biggest Hashtag Misconception

Most people believe that using the most popular hashtags is the best way to gain exposure - “Just use the most popular hashtags and more people will see it.”
This is wrong.

 

Unless you are a very large page, using the most popular hashtags a lot of times has little to no effect on the engagement of your post. Why? Because you are competing with millions of other posts just like that. Keep that in mind. I am not saying don’t ever use super popular hashtags. But when that is all you use, you will be disappointed with the results.

 

How do I determine which hashtags to use?
 

First and foremost, Research.


Keep in mind, you are officially allowed 30 hashtags per post.

We strongly suggest you utilize all 30. It will give you maximum
exposure and visibility.
 

When researching hashtags, you want to look for 3 things:

  1. The number of posts a hashtag stream has - You want to make sure that you are researching hashtags with all levels of users. 10k all the way up to 100m.

  2. The engagement on the posts using that hashtag.

  3. The quality/style of pictures using that hashtag.

 

Here is how you research:

  • Make a list of every hashtag that could possibly go with your content.

  • Type each one in individually, and look at the three things discussed above.

  • Determine which has the best engagement, cleanest content, and best ROI.

  • Figure out which are your best 30-60 hashtags.

  • Use those, customizing each post with hashtags that go along with it.




 

A good hashtag ecosystem example:

Top hashtag streams: (10m to 1m posts)

  • #weed - 9,456.376 posts

  • #cannabis - 8,871,056 posts

  • #ganja - 4,890,740 posts

  • #fueledbythc - 2,513,219 posts

  • #instaweed - 2,395,430 posts


High hashtag streams: (999k to 100k posts)

  • #420photography - 646,625 posts

  • #weedlife - 504,225 posts

  • #420girls - 490,781 posts

  • #justblazeig - 483,161 posts

  • #420friendly - 440,602 posts

  • #420blazeit - 263,686 posts

  • #letsgethigh - 236,150 posts

  • #cannabissociety - 166,143 posts

  • #weedwomen - 161,807 posts

  • #weedculture - 108,064 posts

  • #stonedsociety - 102,928 posts

Middle hashtag streams: (99k to 10k posts)

  • #420ladies - 86,493 posts

  • #cannabislife - 75,325 posts

  • #cannabisqueenz - 71,255 posts

  • #dankdivas - 55,477 posts

  • #420girl - 46,074 posts

  • #cannabislifestyle - 28,844 posts

  • #cannabislover - 24,145 posts

  • #straincentral - 22,444 posts

  • #weedlifestyle - 20,098 posts

  • #cannabispatient - 15,362 posts

  • #girlswhosmokepot - 12,920 posts

 

Low hashtag streams: (9k to 1k posts)

  • #ganjachick - 3,979 posts

  • #ganjawoman - 3,236 posts

  • #weedphotos - 2,711 posts


Structuring your hashtags according to stream post volume (as showcased above) will increase your chances to rank as a top post in the lower volume hashtag streams. As engagement builds up, your post will go from lower/middle streams to higher ones.

As a result, you'll get more eyes on your content, more engagement, and more followers.

 

TIP: Make sure that your hashtags are as related to your post as possible.

 

Happy Instagramming!

The 50/50 Rule

Cannabis entrepreneurs are a crazy bunch.

A
s if being an entrepreneur wasn't hard enough, we also work in the Weed industry :)
I swear that my parents still think that I'm a drug dealer.

While the whole world is still debating if marijuana should be legal, we're already ten steps ahead, analyzing the market, looking for opportunity, trying to build the next big thing.

As you find yourself fully immersed in the green rush fever, it's important to remember that most business ideas are often created as assumptions based on one's point of view and understanding of certain variables. Sometimes those assumptions are right and they grow to be billion dollar companies, but more often than not, assumptions, when not developed diligently will lead you to failure, burn you out, and bury you in debt.

Cool Story Heh?


 

From IDEA  to CANNABIS POWERHOUSE
 

50% product development / 50% Traction = Successful Growth Framework

To validate your business idea and determine the organic value of your concept, product development, and customer acquisition should be done simultaneously.

This process is all about selling people on the potential of your idea, get their feedback, and meet them halfway with a product/service that has been precisely optimized based on their wishes and experience.

Once customers are "acquired" you'll transition them to  a "Customer Development" stage.

Take no shortcuts. Adopt a customer-centric growth mindset.

 

Product Development Like A Pro

  • Develop a customer feedback/development framework based on rewards.

  • Use incentivized surveys.

  • Provide proactive live chat support on your website.

  • Optimize all your distribution channels (social media, etc) for incentivized feedback.



Getting Traction like a MOFO

First and foremost you need to fully understand the concept of "Omnipresence" when applied to marketing and distribution.
You should be present in social media, digital communities and forums in a consistent manner. ALWAYS providing value!

 

Don’t underestimate the power of maximizing digital distribution! It will pay you dividends in the future.
 

Traction Method #

  • Incentivize inbound traffic by giving something of perceived value (Guides, discounts, Offers).

  • Run incentivized email capture promotions.

  • Send all your leads to a FB group (you can actually add people directly to the group using their email address)

  • Use the FB group to nourish your relationship with your first few prospects and build a community based on value.

  • Create a referral program based on incentives and turn your core customers/fans into ambassadors. (Emphasis on FB Messenger and Email referrals). 

  • Depending on your budget you can use referral tools like Viral Loops, Referral Candy, etc.

 

Sit back, light up a joint, watch your business grow.

 

The 50/50 rule framework, if executed properly, will carry you to the marketplace with a fully validated concept, a strong customer base and a product that kicks ass.

In collaboration with Woahstork this rule allowed us to validate the concept, acquire over 35k user signups during the MVP stage, and proceed to build one of the most tech advanced platforms in the cannabis industry.