Consuming and Producing on Social Media: A Uses and Gratifications Perspective on Motives of Hashtag Use on Instagram

Antonia Erz, Ben Marder, Elena Osadchaya

Research output: Contribution to conferenceConference abstract for conferenceResearchpeer-review


Hashtags are a central feature on Instagram and represent both modes of consumption and production: Users can click on hashtags to search for and view content, and they can create and add hashtags to their own pictures. Based on the Uses and Gratifications approach, this study is the first to investigate motives for hashtag use on Instagram. Through a two-phase mixed method approach, we first explore uses and gratifications and describe six factors in predicting hashtag use, namely Self-presentation, Chronicling, Inventiveness, Information Seeking, Venting, and Etiquette. Furthermore, testing specific relationships, we find that Etiquette, Chronicling and Self-presentation strongly predict hashtag adding frequency, while clicking is largely predicted by motives of Information Seeking. Exploring individual differences, ‘leaders’ who pool more followers than they follow are highly driven by motives of Self-presentation. Theoretical contributions and managerial implications are discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Publication date2018
Publication statusPublished - 2018
EventThe 47th EMAC Annual Conference 2018: People Make Marketing - University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, United Kingdom
Duration: 29 May 20181 Jun 2018
Conference number: 47


ConferenceThe 47th EMAC Annual Conference 2018
LocationUniversity of Strathclyde
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
Internet address


  • Uses and gratifications
  • Social media
  • Hashtags
  • Track
  • Digital marketing

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