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Typepad 101: Using Hashtags to Crowdsource Instagram Content for Your Blog

Welcome to Typepad 101! Whether you want to add some new features to your blog's design, or simply make your blog more functional, Typepad 101 has you covered. This tip is suitable for bloggers at all levels using Basic Templates - no special tricks or upgrades needed!

Like almost everyone else with a smart phone and an exhibitionist streak, we love Instagram and are always looking for ways to incorporate our photos into our blogs. In the past, we've talked about how to add your own Instagram photos to your blog's Sidebar, and we've even talked about cross-posting from Instagram to your Typepad blog automatically. Today, we're going to talk about pulling photos with a specific #hashtag into your blog's Sidebar using a third-party service like Intagme's Instagram Widget.

Using hashtags to pull photos in to your blog can be fun and handy. For instance, if you run a food blog, displaying photos with the #food tag will pull in any photo tagged #food. The snaps could consist of photos you took yourself, or photos that someone else took; as long as they have the specified hashtag, they should fit the bill. That said, it's smart to do a quick reality check when picking a hashtag to call to your blog's Sidebar - you might want to avoid displaying photos with questionable content!

To get started, just head over to Intagme.com (or SnapWidget), and fill out the form there, (making sure to leave the Username field blank if you want photos from all users and adding a username if you only want your photos with the specific tag), and filling in the hashtag field with the tag of your choice. The rest of the fields depend on your specific layout and how you want the photos to display:


Next, you can click the Preview button to see how your photos will look on your blog, or just click the "Get Code" button to retrieve your code:


Highlight and copy the code provided, then head on over to your Typepad account.

Next, choose your blog and click to Design > Content, and choose an Embed Your Own HTML module from the middle menu, then click the button on the right to add it (we have more information about adding custom sidebar content here). Give your module a good title, then paste your code into the pop-up box, and click OK.


Drag your module and drop it wherever you'd like to see your photos appear on your Sidebar, and save your changes. Your new widget will be displayed on your Sidebar like you see on the left here at The Ruckus, a music blog that uses the hashtag #xotheruckus to pull in music related photos that the writers and blog readers have snapped:


Super easy, right? It's a great way to pull in content from around the web (and around the world)!

Do you have a favorite way to use Instagram? Tell us about it in the comments!


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