Hashtag: A word or phrase preceded by a hash sign #, used on social media. Using the correct hashtag on your social media can help bring interaction to your posts because it automatically links your posts with others with the same hashtag. It’s also a great tracking tool for checking out other posts on keywords that have been hashtagged.
As an example, if you want to attract attention to your business, use hashtags to do with your services or your location like #newbusiness, #reading or #digitalmarketing. Someone who is looking for digital marketing businesses can search for these hashtags and will come across your posts. Using these helps bring traffic to your posts which could turn into new clients.
There are an estimated 1.3 billion people who use Twitter and they tweet about everything including the weather, politics or even their latest business ideas. Using hashtags on Twitter has become very popular, but they need to be managed carefully. According to ‘Buffer Social’ using one or two hashtags on a tweet means that it is 55% more likely to be retweeted.; however, when you use more than two hashtags, your engagement actually drops by an average of 17%. Trends on twitter are a good way to network and engage: for example, with #Wednesdaywisdom you can put anything up and join together with people all over the world looking at each other’s ‘wisdoms’.
When writing a tweet make sure you keep your hashtags short and sweet. You don’t want to make it confusing for the reader. They need to be relevant to the tweet so when other users are looking for a specific hashtag they can find it easily.
On twitter don’t overdo it with the hashtags, two to three is plenty. Don’t use more than three to four words in them as this can be too much as well. Make sure you don’t just tweet in hashtags, there needs to be some words without them.
Instagram is another social media platform to use hashtags on. It’s great for people who can’t decide what they want to hashtag and want to hashtag everything. Buffer Social’s research has shown that interactions are highest on Instagram posts with 11+ hashtags. Using plenty of them, therefore, is a good way for small businesses to gain attention and be noticed.
Make sure you do your research on the best ones to use with your post to get the best interaction. With Instagram keeping your hashtags long is an exception as they have a better interaction than the shorter ones.
Make sure you don’t use any negative hashtags which can bring in the wrong audience to the post. There are a few very popular hashtags which you shouldn’t use just to bring attention to your post, it needs to be relevant to the post otherwise defeats the purpose of the post.
Google+ is a different type of social media platform, as it automatically assigns hashtags from the content of the posts. Although you can add more or change the ones currently on there, Google+ helps you make the most of the content and bring as much attention to your post as possible, particularly if you have less experience with effective hashtags. There are also opportunities to use them in the comments which gives you more chance to reach the right audience.
With Google+ it’s good to hashtag your location and an overall word of what you are posting about. People use Google+ to look at posts around their area and it’s useful to see what people have in common. Google+ hashtags are kept updated to the newest trends so it’s best to see what they have suggested for you.
Although google+ helps you out with certain hashtags don’t always rely on them be independent and research the best ones for you. Don’t get carried away with using too many and keep it to a reasonable amount which relate to your post.
Facebook has been known to be a bad place to hashtag, as it is a form of social media that functions differently from the others mentioned above. As Facebook tends to be seen and used as more of a private sharing platform it tends to be much less about open networking than the other platforms. Although there are still some interactions with posts with hashtags, there haven’t been enough of them to prove it’s a good idea to hashtag on Facebook.
If you decide to hashtag on Facebook try and keep it within one to two hashtags as this isn’t too much for social media platform that isn’t known best for hash-tagging. With Facebook make sure you capitalise the first letter of the start of each word, #MakesItClear where the word starts and ends.
Don’t just hashtag on Facebook for the sake of it, use it for what it is best for, event sharing and starting a conversation.
Overall, wherever you decide to hashtag, try not to overdo it. Keep it short and sweet and don’t hashtag everything. Make sure you hashtag relevant information to bring the right audience to your social media communications.