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How to use hashtag recommendations to supercharge your engagement!
How to use hashtag recommendations to supercharge your engagement!
Naomi Gaeng avatar
Written by Naomi Gaeng
Updated over a week ago

Sked has always been a tool to help you with Instagram engagement. Whether it's through consistent posting with Queue, polishing your grid with Planner or using our Photo editor to keep a consistent aesthetic, we've got you covered!

Today, however, we're announcing a tool to help you completely reinvent your engagement and significantly raise your chances of being discovered & featured on the explore page.

We present to you - the Hashtag Recommender!

We made the Hashtag Recommender to take guesswork out of engagement and equip you with the first professional Hashtag discovery tool, fed with over 13 millions of posts posted with Sked throughout the years and equipped with artificial intelligence designed to help you work smarter and use the best possible hashtags for any occasion.

With Hashtag Recommender, you'll get suggestions for hashtags most likely to boost your discovery, engagement and get you to top of people's Explore pages easier and faster. After years of hearing hashtag woes of 10,000+ social media managers using Sked, we collected this feedback, gathered and analyzed every single post posted through Sked in the last 5 years and coupled with an algorithm designed to measure each hashtag's relevance in real time - their "magic", if you will. We're using the cell-phone style signal bars to indicate to you the popularity of the hashtag.

The best practice for Instagram is to combine low volume and high volume hashtags. The Hashtag Recommender allows you to do this in the most optimized way.

Once you add your first hashtag when uploading a post, click the lightbulb in the corner and it will recommend related hashtags, sorting them by their likelihood of boosting your engagement, a metric we call: velocity.

As you add more hashtags, the tool learns about your preferences and adds more recommendations likely to help your engagement & discovery rate.

Why the Hashtag Recommender?

Hashtags on Instagram have always been a bit… messy, Instagram was the first social platform to experience “hashtag stuffing” with people using 50+ hashtags in order to attract usually pretty bland and inauthentic engagement. 

And Instagram has also fought this quite a bit, “shadowbanning” overstuffed / overused hashtags (to be clear - Instagram confirmed they’ve never used shadowbanning or any other penalties on users).

Further, many popular hashtags are flooded with bots or fake accounts or even poorly led business accounts using apps like Instagress and creating fake engagement. (Go ahead, try using #cool on your photos).

Regular users and even businesses have trouble figuring out hashtags sometimes, from the very literal ones (#boy #girl #couple) to the overly descriptive (#mirrorselfie), annoying, trendy (#ootd, #tb), trending (#fyrefestival) or just plain bizarre - #sunburnt gets my vote here), hashtags are messy and unclear and just plain confusing sometimes.

All of this has given Instagram hashtags a fairly bad reputation (which also made it the first platform where users actively try to hide the fact they use hashtags with line breaks or first comments) and we hear more and more from our users that they just don’t know which hashtags to use and how to discover the optimal ones.

Where Hashtag Recommender comes in

Long story short, we analyzed over 13 million Instagram posts (posted with Sked in 5 years) and benchmarked their engagement rate against hashtags used, to discover which hashtags are more likely to amplify posts and which will just burry your precious marketing content in spam.

We’re basically reinventing Hashtag “SEO” here by giving you a hashtag tool that will continuously analyze and learn about the hashtags you use, how they affect your engagement and will automagically give you recommendations likely to amplify your engagement beyond the obvious.

Once you add your first hashtag, our smart tool will work to recommend you more hashtags likely to boost your engagement and help your posts get discovered. In order to use the tool, you'll need to upload an Instagram post, add your first hashtag and then click the lightbulb in the Caption/First comment field.

Over to you

As you keep using the tool, it will continue learning and improving its results, we're excited to see how recommendations improve over time and how it improves your engagement. Check out the Hashtag Recommender as soon as you schedule your next post and let us know how you like it.

Stay tuned! We plan to roll out more granular hashtag analytics by niche. We also hope to leverage your unique account history to provide you with personalized suggestions for high impact hashtags, based on what has worked well with your posts previously.

As always, we'd love to hear your feedback about the tool at [email protected]!

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