Instagram hashtags are not dead

Instagram hashtags are not dead

Manuel Marinari’s recipe to boost your social media

have you stopped using instagram’s hashtags?

well, listen to me, you should keep using them!

I know I know, I personally didn’t use hashtags myself during 2019, they simply didn’t want to work but latest instagram algorithm updates gave to them a second chance, and they’re great!

hashtags on instagram are back to life during this 2020 and here it’s why and how to use them.


because the organic reach is clearly dead and decreased for everyone, we are talking about less than 5% own audience reached for every posted picture or video, it’s a mix of overpopulation and competition on the plaftorm and greediness by the company trying to push users to buy more sponsored ads. We alredy experienced this tragic story during 2019 on facebook, It’s a social media life cycle. Follow my guidelines and you can double or even triple for exposure.


Not getting enough reach from your Hashtags?

Well if you are stuck using bad hashtag sets, or worse banned hashtags – you won’t appear in hashtags at all. You need to be real here and target Hashtags with the right popularity for your account. Be smart about it and try testing out different hashtag strategies.

1 only use hashtags strictly related to your picture or your account’s niche

2 alternate them, a mix of 90 hashtags is perfect. don’t always use same ones

3 don’t use banned hashtags or too popular words

Let’s go into deep explanation of point number 3!

Popular words or also called “big hashtags” are simply those hashtags with a huge amount of total post count, usually over millions. They’re most of time “banned” or too many instagram users are using them giving 0% chance to your little account to overcome other posts, they won’t help your post to rank up but instead they will rank it down! Only celebrities and very big accounts with millions of followers and likes can hope to rank them.

So, which is the way to use? Avoiding them or more smartly, mixing them with smaller ones.


My personal favorite is the ladder strategy. It’s about utilizing smaller hashtags to get more exposure, which in return leads to more engagement – helping you rank on the bigger hashtags even at a smaller following.

To make things easier I made an explanation on what hashtag sizes you should use depending on your follower count:

 Between 0 and 2.500 followers you should use 75% hashtags (with total post count 5k-250k) and 20% hashtags (with total post count 500k-1mil)

Between 2.500 and 15.000 followers you should use 70% hashtags (with total post count 5k-250k) and 25% hashtags (with total post count 500k-1mil)

Between 15.000 and 50.000 followers you should use 30% hashtags (with total post count 5k-250k), 30% hashtags (with total post count 500k-1mil) and 10% hashtags (with total post count 1mil-10mil)

Between 50.000 and 100.000 followers you should use 20% hashtags (with total post count 250k-500k), 40% hashtags (with total post count 500k-1mil) and 40% hashtags (with total post count 1mil-10mil)

Do you have a hashtag strategy? If not, will you be using the ladder strategy from now on?

Try it guys and let me know in the comments below, you won’t regret it.

This is the best way to avoid sponsored ads and boost your reach to target your ideal audience on Instagram.


Manuel Marinari is an entrepreneur, influencer and social media guru from Milan, Italy based in Taipei, Taiwan.

Sway Society founded in 2017, in Taiwan by Manuel Marinari. The agency drives brands into the world of social media, providing influencer marketing, digital growth and content creation.

Sway Squad is the new exclusive high-end social media management by SwaySociety in 2020. A group of talented and certified active influencers helps athletes and public figures all over the world managing, growing and restyling their social profIles.

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