If Instagram is part of your digital strategy and marketing then you want to be part of the right conversations and communities, and hashtags are one way to get in. Advertising, promoted posts and influencer marketing are great ways to engage your audience – but hashtags will help stretch your content organically (free!).
Social media blogs will tell you to ‘research’ hashtags. But what does that actually mean? Spending hours combing through posts and influencers in your industry will often just leave you overwhelmed and wondering how some accounts get so many followers and engagement. We’re all busy, and to put it simply: hashtag research sucks!
Below is a list of the top Instagram hashtags for business in Vancouver as a quick copy-and-paste reference. Bookmark this page and come back to it for all your Instagram hashtag needs.
Update: For the latest Instagram and hashtag tips, see:
New rules for hashtags to boost your Instagram strategy
Complete List of Hashtags for Vancouver Businesses
These hashtags organized into categories by industry type. These lists focus on hashtags for business in the Vancouver area.
General Vancouver Hashtags for Instagram
Vancouver Business Hashtags
Vancouver Design Hashtags
Vancouver Creative Industry Hashtags
Vancouver Marketing Hashtags for Instagram
Vancouver Software and Technology Hashtags
Vancouver Events, Conferences and Venue Hashtags
Vancouver Coffee and Café Hashtags
Vancouver Law Instagram Hashtags
Vancouver Health and Fitness Hashtags
Vancouver Charity, Non-profit and Community Hashtags
Vancouver Neighbourhood Instagram Hashtags
The best place to find hashtags for a neighbourhood is by seeing what the local business improvement association is using (or these handy-dandy lists below):
6 Tips for Vancouver Businesses on Instagram
1. Target your audience
Generic or extremely popular hashtags, such as #vancouver and #vancouverisawesome, don’t perform well. While they are good to use on occasion, posts with these types of hashtags get lost quickly in the sea of new images. Use targeted hashtags to get more engagement and be discovered by your target market.
2. Tell a story
Instagram may be heavy on the visuals, but don’t ignore the opportunity to tell your story. Longer captions can increase the engagement of your post and interest in our brand. Try sharing some behind-the-scenes info, a business insight, or a fun story.
3. Research done right
One way to find hashtags relevant to your audience is to look at locations they may frequent. What is their favourite coffee shop? Where are they on the weekend? Engage with them! Colleges and universities that have programs in your field can offer up a goldmine for hashtag research. Students posting at these locations will often be using the latest and emerging hashtags.
4. You have 30 opportunities
Choose a few core hashtags to your audience and brand, and repeat them more – but diversify with the rest. Use a range of hashtags, you have up to 30 to play with. Test and measure the results of different hashtags.
Update (February 2021): Avoid using all 30 hashtags on your posts as this is flagged as spammy behaviour. Use only the hashtags that will give you the most value. If that means using only one, then use one. Test, experiment, and learn. I am currently experimenting with using 4-9 hashtags on my personal profile.
5. Don’t be a hashtag #jerk
As users become more aware of marketers using hashtags to target their groups – hashtags are becoming more and more obscure. For example: #unique_trvl (unique travel). Do some research into what is being used by your community and target audience – it may require a bit of digging. If you find a great hashtag for your audience, don’t abuse it. If you overuse or are exploiting it, your audience will move on (and away from your brand).
6. Emojis are your 👯
Try a relevant emoji hashtag to your posts. I like to put them at the start of my ‘first comment of hashtags’ as they add a visual element to a long list of hashtags. They can also generate great engagement with certain audiences on Instagram.
Having your own branded hashtag won’t necessarily grow your following, but they can build your brand equity, establish your community and set you up to be a leader in your industry.
Here some of our best examples of Vancouver businesses with great branded hashtags:
#hootsuitelife is such a popular community and culture hashtag that it is used more than #hootsuite itself. Of course, it helps when your employees are social media savvy, but it shows the power of an engaged audience.
This hashtag extends beyond the brand itself (backpacks, accessories and now branching into apparel), but speaks to their target market.
This hashtag is aligned well with the brand principles. It is unique, whilst still being something that users can apply to their own lives.
Create Your Own Hashtag
You don’t have to be a large business to create your own hashtag and build a community. There are two hashtags I was the first to start using:
This hashtag came about in the comments of the above post. Originally a parody and sassy comment on obsession with superficial beauty and perfection (which this photo did not demonstrate). I started to use it as an empowering hashtag for myself and coworkers; #babesofwebdesign are intelligent, hard-working, dedicated and of course love the web!
This is my fun hashtag, more of a personal project. After following my own tip above of using an emoji hashtag #? I created this hashtag.
Keep in mind
Even though you might be the first to use it and associate it with your brand – you don’t own it. As soon as you use a hashtag community of Instagram owns it, and they will hopefully run with it in a positive manner. But that isn’t always the case, there are plenty of examples of brand hashtag fails. Be thoughtful and strategic about the hashtags you are aligning with your business, and don’t hijack hashtags with irrelevant content.
Struggling with your business Instagram and digital strategy, or want to see your industry added to this list? Reach out and ask. I may add it to the hashtag list or have some further tips. Would love to hear if you found this useful.
Now get posting and using these targeted Vancouver business hashtags.
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Instagram Feed Design
Instagram combines my interest in photography with a unique design challenge. I have taken to curating my grid layout – making sure that not only are the photo strong but that the feed is balanced and works well together.
These are some of the Instagram feeds I have curated:
Like what you see? View my portfolio or contact me.