Are you using Instagram as part of your hotel marketing strategy? If you aren’t yet, you should be. Brands with an active Instagram presence experience many benefits, including higher engagement and the opportunity to connect with new audiences.
In fact, according to Brandwatch, brand engagement on Instagram is 10 times higher than Facebook, 54 times higher than Pinterest, and 84 times higher than Twitter.
But Instagram marketing is more than just posting pretty pictures. You must have a well-developed strategy that taps into the platform’s strengths and takes advantage of its specific features and functions.
Specifically, hashtags are one of the Instagram features that you should be using as a hotel marketer. If you aren’t familiar, hashtags are essentially searchable topics that users can add to their Instagram photos. The word or term is prefaced by the pound/hash sign (for example, #fashion) and then the photo appears in a collection with other posts that have been uploaded with the same hashtag.
Check out these examples of brands that are successfully using hashtags to grow their base of hotel Instagram followers.
Do hashtags really do anything?
Sometimes, marketers overlook hashtags because they aren’t convinced that using them will be beneficial. However, the statistics prove otherwise. In fact, Instagram posts with at least one hashtag average 12.6% more engagement than those without hashtags.
It’s easy to understand why this misconception exists. If you were to search #hotel on Instagram right now, you’d find more than 27 million posts. Why would you want to spend your time inserting hashtags like that when you’re sure to get lost in the noise?
The trick is finding the sweet spot between hashtags that are broad enough to grab attention but focused enough to allow your brand to stand out. Sometimes, this means running a campaign that combines more general terms with unique hashtags that you’ve created yourself. We’ll share examples of hotels successfully using hashtags later in this post.
How can you identify good hashtags?
Fire up a spreadsheet and start brainstorming hashtag ideas based on your location, offering, and features that make your property unique. Once you’ve exhausted that path, take a look at some of these hashtag research ideas.
Before including a hashtag on an Instagram post, story, or comment, make sure to check out the photos that have already included that hashtag. Avoid using terms that are associated with spammy or inauthentic posts.
What are some examples of hotel Instagram hashtags?
Your hashtag strategy will depend on a few different factors, including the size and target demographic of your hotel. Here are some examples of hotels in different niches using Instagram hashtags to promote their brand.
Luxury vacationers and honeymooners
Certain hotels and resorts appeal to high-end clientele or newlyweds going on a once-in-a-lifetime honeymoon. The Fairmont Maldives does an excellent job of posting professionally shot photographs on their Instagram and using a combination of hashtags like #honeymoondestination, #visitmaldives, and #luxurylifestyle.
Digital nomads and budget travelers
If a majority of your guests are backpackers or budget-conscious travelers, your approach will be different than the luxury brands we just discussed. For example, Selina, a chain of hostels and co-working spaces, regularly uses hashtags like #nomads, #wanderlust, and #travelgoals to attract their target customers.
Last, if you’re a family-friendly destination, your strategy will also differ from the two previous examples. The Loews hotel chain has a dedicated hashtag where they post family-oriented snaps, along with other descriptive hashtags like #neworleans and #fathersday.
Use these ideas to help you brainstorm and choose the right hotel Instagram hashtags for your property. Then, sit back and watch as your audience grows.