Although most of us are likely familiar with hashtags, there is still some mystery on how they work and the best way you can use them on your social media platforms. As a brief overview, a hashtag is basically a word or phrase that describes a topic preceded by the “#” symbol. This can be a single word or a group of words, that typically have no spaces in between such as #cybermonday, #fitnesstraining or #naturalhairstyles. These clickable links now become ways that people can search a particular topic and see all related conversation in a consolidated view. Hashtags were first made popular on Twitter, and other social media channels such as Facebook, Instagram and Tumblr followed suit due to its popularity. Now, hashtags have become a major part of our lives. We use it to check the news, read up on current events, and spark conversations about our favorite TV shows in real time. When used the right way, it can also be a major promotional tool for your business.
Although the basic principles of how hashtags work can be used universally across several social media platforms, there are unique methods that can be used for each one to make the most impact. Here are some tips broken down by the social media platforms Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
Being that it started the popular concept of the hashtag, Twitter deserves the first spotlight on our list. You can search any hashtag on Twitter by simply clicking in the search button and typing a word or phrase. You will see them categorized by top tweets, latest tweets, photos, videos, and more. It is also easy to jump in on the conversation whether it is through a retweet or a new tweet that includes a popular hashtag
- Come up with predetermined hashtags and encourage your followers to use them when contributing to the conversation
- What trends for each user is different. Focus on hashtags that will engage your followers directly first before you focus on a larger audience.
- Get your followers to retweet as much as possible. This can be done by starting an engaging conversation or offering some kind of incentive such as entry into a giveaway for a gift card
- Come up with unique hashtags in order for yours to stand out above common phrases
Hashtag use on Instagram is not only simple but also very useful. The search function on Instagram is a popular, easy to use feature that allows users to search a group of pictures and videos that follow the same theme. Instagram is also the place where you can use multiple hashtags making the image more likely to show up in different searches.
- Choose hashtags that are simple and easy to remember
- Keep a tab on popular hashtags frequently
- Participate in hashtag trends that are already popular. These are a good staple to rely on because you can count on the fact that a good number of your followers are participating in these trending campaigns
- Have fun with multiple hashtags for the same photo. You aren’t dealing with the character limits of Twitter, giving you more of an opportunity to get more creative with using more related hashtags
See our #beaches example below. What else comes to mind when you think of these beautiful beach views? Here are few we’ve come up with!
#beaches #sun #sand #vacation #ocean #getaway #travellife #views
The use of hashtags is welcome on Facebook although not as widely used as a primary function. The key to making Facebook hashtags searchable with a chance of trending is to make sure that particular post is set to public to get the biggest attention and traction. Due to these limitations, keep in mind that the best use of Hashtags on a larger scale will likely be through Twitter and Instagram.
- Make sure the post is marked public if you want to reach a wider audience
- Link your Facebook and Instagram which eliminates the need to make duplicate posts
I hope that you found these tips helpful! If you need help implementing any of these or have questions on how to take your social media presence to the next level, learn about how you can work with me to learn more.