How to Use Instagram Tagging for More Exposure
Hashtags have long been recognized as the popular way to get exposure on Instagram, but did you know there’s actually a number of other tagging options available to grow your followers and build your account?
We’re going to talk about the different types of tagging options available on Instagram, including how to tag another account, how to add location tags, and even how to add product tags. Be sure to stick around till the end where I’m going to tell you how to combine all of these different tags for maximum exposure.
All right, let’s talk tagging. We’re only talking about how to tag regular feed posts on Instagram, not Instagram stories. Although, there are some similarities and things you can do over there. Let’s break down some funky terminology on Instagram. There is tagging an account and @-mentioning an account. These often used interchangeably, but they’re actually different, so let’s break that down. @-mention is where you put the @ symbol in front of somebody’s username, whether that’s in a comment, in your caption, to mention them and get their attention. Tagging someone on Instagram is where in your original post, you can add a tag and tag a number of other accounts in that image. Only the content creator can tag people in the post itself, but an @-mention can be done on any content by anyone.
You may be asking why you would want to tag an account if you could simply @-mention them. Well, there’s two reasons. @-mentions show up in the regular notification feed and can easily get lost since that notification feed only shows the 100 most recent notifications. So, if that account got 200 notifications, they didn’t see the first 100. They only saw the last 100. Tagging that account, however, shows up in a separate notification. This allows you to stand out against all the other notifications and make sure that they saw your content. And that brings me to the second reason. When an account is tagged on Instagram, that content is actually housed in a separate tab on that person’s Instagram profile. That tagged content basically becomes a giant gallery of user-generated content about your brand. And for more information on using user-generated content on Instagram, all of this being said, there is a downside to only tagging an account on Instagram and not @-mentioning them.
The tag on a post does show all of the accounts tagged, but most users won’t tap on the content to see who is tagged in it, and they won’t be able to see the accounts that were mentioned. In this case, it’s best to @-mention all of those tagged accounts in the caption as well so that the average user reading it sees those usernames too.
Let’s now take you through the steps to tag another account on your Instagram content. To add a tag to a new post that you’re uploading to Instagram, upload your post like normal, whether it’s a photo or a video, add your filters, any edits, and when you get to the caption screen, you will see an option to tag people. If you’re uploading an image, tap anywhere on the photo and you will see the pop-up box appear where you can type in the name of the person you want to tag. Select them from the list and the tag will appear. You can even drag and move around that tag so it’s right over their head or you can put them off to the side if you don’t want to cover up your image. If you’re uploading a video, tap on the Tag People option and you’ll be able to add the tags of people in a line below the video. To add multiple people, simply tap anywhere on the image again and you can add another person. You can tag up to 20 people per post. When you’re done tagging people, tap on the check mark in the upper right corner, and that will return you to your regular upload screen. Continue loading it like normal and you’re all set. If you wanted to go back and edit an existing post already on your Instagram profile, you can do that too. Navigate to that piece of content in your Gallery, tap on the three-line button in the top right corner, and select the Edit option. On the image itself in the lower left corner, you’ll see the Tag People option. Simply tap on that and follow the same steps to type in the name and select the person that you want to tag in the image, save your changes, and you’re all set.
Now that you know how to tag somebody in a post, chances are you may get tagged in posts as well, but what if you don’t want to be tagged in that post content? No worries, there’s a quick and easy way to remove your tag from that content. Go to the post you’ve been tagged in. At the very top, you’ll see the three-dot button. Choose Hide Options, and then tap on Remove Me from Post. Then your tag is removed and you won’t appear in that content anymore. That leads us to when you should and shouldn’t tag people in a post on Instagram. You should only be tagging people or brands that are actually in that post. We don’t want to tag a bunch of people in a post in which they do not appear simply to get their attention. This is frowned upon and may get you flagged for spam and actually hurt your chances of success on Instagram. Now that you understand how to tag accounts,
let’s talk about location tags. When you tap on Tag Location, the location options will default to what is close in and around you. If that’s not the location you want to tag, simply start typing in the location you want and you will see a list of options that match appear. Select the location and you’re all set. Once you upload your Instagram content, you will see that location appear right below your username.
That’s actually clickable. Someone can tap on that and navigate to search results for that location, and that brings me to why you want to use location tags. The primary reason is searchability. People on Instagram are looking at locations all the time for things to do or what’s going on or what a business looks like. So, if you’re tagging that location in your content, there’s a good chance that you could show up in those search results and other people will see your content related to that location. If you’re a local business and you’re creating content and tagging your business location, also encourage your customers to tag your business location and that will give anyone looking at that location a wider perspective of what it’s like at your business. If your business doesn’t have a physical location, you can use tags in and around the vicinity where you live, where you travel, if you attend venues, events or anything related to your business that is at a physical location. You can tag those locations too. I don’t recommend adding a location tag to every single post all the time, but when doing it strategically, it can help boost that exposure to more people. If you already have your store set up, you can add product tags to your Instagram posts that have your products in them. Those posts have a little shopping bag icon on them so people know that they’re shoppable, and by tapping on the photo itself, they will see all the product information and can navigate through the shop to complete the purchase.
Now that you’re familiar with all these different types of tags, there’s one caveat that we want to make sure you’re familiar with. Your Instagram account has to be public in order for tags to really work. If you tag an account and your account is private and that account isn’t following you, they won’t be able to see your content that’s been tagged.
All right, it’s time for that bonus; how to combine all of these tags for maximum exposure. Let’s say you’re out at a business or a restaurant. You can tag the business in the photo itself. You can @-mention the business in the caption so all your friends and family can see that @-mention, and you can add the location tag to show up in possible search result. This gets you maximum exposure from search, friends and family, and the brand that you’ve tagged. But what if it’s your own business you’re trying to promote, can you still use all these tags? Yes, you can. Maybe do it a little conservatively, but you can still technically tag yourself in your content. But of course, we can’t neglect our favourite tag, the hashtag, which is known for growth and exposure opportunities on Instagram.