Help, I Instagrammed and Don't Know How to Hashtag!

  I need help!  I'm so incredibly out of the social media loop that I don't know how to use a hashtag.  When I left America to work in Antarctica in early 2008, texting was still so new that most phone plans didn't include it.  Facebook had just started to become something that people used regularly and Twitter and Instagram didn't exist.  While I've been away social media has grown by leaps and bounds.  High speed internet in the homes on Kwaj was only installed last year and the Marshall Islands cell phone network isn't up carrying an internet connection so I've missed out on learning how to use social media platforms organically, as they grew.

  All that to tell you why I don't know how to speak in hashtags on Instagram.  I'm trying to get caught up, so I created an Instagram account (check me out at and started uploading pictures.  I won't even begin to tell you all the steps that are involved in doing that without a smart phone!  I've been finding and following some of my friends and other bloggers and what do I see in the captions but hashtags:

  How do you choose what to put for a hashtag?!  Should you focus on the location, on the people, or maybe the theme of the picture?  Is it all audience centered, to bring in more page views, or do you just put whatever you want after that silly character?  Help!  Here are three of my Instagram posts, all hashtag-less of course.  What would you put after the caption if you were posting them?

See where I'm linking up here


  1. Hashtags are tons of fun! Honestly you can put whatever you like after the little symbol. They can definitely be used to bring in more page views, but in my experience it seems like people do that when they are trying to build a brand or advertise something like a fitness challenge or some cool new pants (seriously, it could be anything).

    What I've seen a lot of people do is create a hashtag that is specific for them. This makes it easy to track pictures you've taken over time. For example, you could start adding #kwajadoptionjourney to pictures you post that are related to your newest family addition. Later you can click on the hashtag and see all the pictures grouped together. Hashtags are not owned by anyone on instagram, so each user is open to use them. I say that to emphasize that other pictures you have not taken can show up when you click the hashtag. The more specific you are, they less likely it will be used. I know you very much value your privacy so instead of putting #familyname you could choose to use initials or something else that is unique to you.

    Here are some examples of hashtags used on instagram: --very popular tag, thousands of pictures --specific to one family's baby journey -- tags for your little slice of paradise!

    If it's easier for you to search instagram on the computer, you can copy one of the links above and change the last section to a tag you want to search.

    They are a fun way to find other people who are interested in the same things as you. As for suggestions for your pictures...

    #ebeyecarnival #myfavoritepeople #waterlovestoplay

    #bathtimefun #thefloorissoakingwet #almostbedtime #howdotheygetsodirty

    #mygirl #burgerkingforthewin #mommydaughtertime #browneyes

    Seriously, whatever you want. One last little note, you can adding spaces or other symbols will break up the hashtag so #can'twait will actually only like #can. I hope that makes sense!

    Anyway, I hope this has been helpful for you! Happy hashtagging. #ilovesocialmedia #askmeanything

    1. Abenaa May, thank you so much!!! I really appreciate you taking the time to explain how to use them and I loved your hashtag suggestions for my pictures. I'm going to put some pictures up on Instagram this weekend and I'll keep your suggestions in mind.
      I hopped over to your blog- congrats on competing in the Commonwealth games!

  2. Well I don't have anything more to add, because she just did a bang up job on explaining it! I used to use them just to be silly or funny or whatever (and sometimes still do) but I've recently taken to using a few popular ones because I like linking up with other women on a topic. #SurprisedByMotherhood and #itssimplytuesday are two of my favorites :)

    1. Thanks for the link-up hashtag suggestions. I really enjoy linking up through blogs so maybe this will be another way to connect with people. I never thought of using it that way :)

  3. Oh and BTW the new blog design looks amazing!

    1. Thanks! I bought the template on Etsy (like YOU suggested) and the seller has been really great about answering my questions and helping me tailor it to fit my needs. I think it looks really sharp and I love the scrolling effect at the top.

  4. You are welcome! And thank you! The Games were tons of fun...I actually never finished blogging about that time spent abroad. You do a really good job of keeping up your blog, it's inspired me to go back and update...even if it did happen almost a year ago.


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