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Photography hashtags are essential to business and marketing, especially in a highly competitive industry such as floristry. Yet, it can certainly feel intimidating when first learning how to use hashtags. How many should you use? Which ones should you use for your posts? Should you mix up your hashtags for each post? Which hashtags will get the most viewers? All of these answers are different for each person. I find 13 to 15 hashtags a good number to work with for each posting.

It is best to go ahead and establish a few staple hashtags to use on all of your posts as a way of catching a social wave and building your brand. A good starting point is to use your name, your business name, your location, and maybe something specific to your business... such as your slogan or something that you’re known for.

 Next, add hashtags that are specific to what you’re posting. A good example of this is floral jewelry, which is very popular right now. This is something that a lot of people will be searching for, so having your location and business in hashtags alongside a floral jewelry hashtag will do a lot for your business. People are often looking for specific styles and colors, so it’s a good idea to create hashtags for these things, too.

When it comes to finding the hashtags that will get you the most viewers, this can be tricky. There are many hashtags that are very popular, meaning they are used frequently, such as #love and #instadaily. While using these hashtags can be good because you know many people will be accessing posts under these tags, there is also the danger of your post getting lost in a sea of other posts with the same hashtag. A good rule of thumb is to mix and match. Use a few of the more popular tags interspersed with more specific ones that may not be as heavily used. This way you have a chance of catering to a wide audience while also standing out from the crowd.

Another tip falls into a more abstract category. As floral designers, we make play up your creative side in your hashtags by focusing on the artistry of your pieces. In doing so, think about the overall theme of the piece.

Finally, a friend in the permanent botanical wreath-making business taught me a valuable lesson. She said you have all the knowledge and education in the floral business, and more opportunities than she has to show off her talent, but she was a Facebook influencer making six figures from her garage and I wasn’t. Why? My hashtags were not reaching enough of the general public. She held up a flower and asked me to name it, to which I replied “Viking Pom Pom,” and she said no, it was a miniature sunflower or Black Eyed Susan. The general public knows flowers that are in their yard, and I needed to learn to relate flowers when possible to what was growing in the area.

So, here is a list of a few of my favorite hashtags: #angelyntipton, #Shoplocal, #JacksonvilleFL, #stopbysoon, #AIFD, #AIFDSouthern, #handcrafted, #floraldesign, #lifeofaflorist, #alwaysdifferent, and #create. And a couple that were suggested for other friends: #professionalflorist, #alwayslearning, #alwaysgrowing, and #smartflowers.