Anyone who uses social media will have seen a lot of hashtags with posts. But, do they really help your social media marketing campaigns? What is the importance of hashtags in digital marketing? How do you use them correctly? These are some of the common questions that people ask about hashtags. There are several ways in which you can use hashtags that are trending and popular among users to boost your social media posts and get more followers.
What are Hashtags?
Hashtags are words or phrases followed by a pound(#) symbol.
Adding a hashtag with a post on social media shows that your content is related to the topics. Hashtags are used in social media and microblogging sites to get all the content related to a specific topic together and create engagement. These were first used in social media sites that do not organize data. Nowadays, social media sites like Instagram organize their data but hashtags are still relevant.
For instance, if you want to find out everything related to ‘adventure’, you can search #adventure on Facebook or Instagram and find out everything posted about it on the website.
Hashtags were first used in programming languages like C, and then Twitter started using them for grouping related tweets. Then, other social media platforms also started using hashtags as they gained popularity. Now, search engines like Google use relevant hashtags from social media platforms and show popular content about topics on SERP.
What is the Importance Of Hashtags?
Hashtags can be small power words that can make or break a brand. If you want to know how using hashtags can benefit you, read some uses of hashtagging your posts on social media platforms.
Create User Engagement
Hashtags can create a lot of user engagement if they gain popularity. Hashtags should be able to evoke emotions and make people want to be part of the campaign. Creating engaging and appealing hashtags should be part of your social media marketing campaign.
You can create your brand image and build a loyal customer base through running various social media campaigns. By using creative taglines and hashtags you can promote these campaigns.
For example, have you seen the #haveabreak hashtag on Instagram or Twitter by KitKat? This is part of the #haveabreak campaign by Kitkat that was very popular. This shows that you can create brand awareness even without using the brand name. You can use creativity to make hashtags for your social media campaigns that connect with people and appeal to them.
#CheeriosHeartHuntCheapstakes is an example of branded hashtags. Cheerios used it for the promotion of their food products. Users were asked to hunt for heart-shaped cheerios in packets and post them online to win cash prizes. Using the right hashtags can boost your social media marketing strategy.
Adding Context To Posts
In platforms like Twitter where there is a limit to the words that can be written, hashtags can add context to your posts. It can show what topics your post is about.
For example, a hashtag #throwbackthursday #happy, etc. added with a post can show that your post is about something important from your past and your emotions associated with it.
Support A Social Cause
A brand is not just about business. A brand’s worth depends on how people perceive it. Your social media accounts give you a human side. It shows your human personality and voice. You can show your commitment and solidarity to various causes that you believe in by using relevant hashtags. If your business support environmental causes, you can create and share posts that show your commitment and use hashtags like #netzero or #climatechange, etc.
How To Use Hashtags on Social Media?
Hashtags are used with the pound symbol followed by a string that consists of alphanumeric characters and underscores.
- They can be used in different formats, for example a hashtag for digital marketing campaign can look like,
#Digitalmarketing# – This is used in some languages that do not have separators in the language.
The format using capital letters for separate words (DigitalMarketing) is ideal as it provides accessibility. Now, here are some steps to get more out of your hashtags:
- Firstly, make your hashtags short and easy to remember. Do not string too many words together and make it too complicated. Use creative hashtags that connect with users and prompt them to be part of the campaign.
- Next, decide how many Hashtags to use? This is a common doubt for social media users. Make sure that you do not stuff your post with hashtags. Use a few hashtags that are relevant to the campaign. Using too many hashtags that are not relevant to the posts can seem spammy on some social media platforms.
- Do not use the same hashtags over and over especially on platforms like Twitter. Your account can be suspended. Find new, relevant and good hashtags for each post and plan ahead.
- Last but not the least, focus on different types of content and not just on posts on social media platforms like Instagram and Facebook. If you are an Instagram user who wants to rank for a highly competitive hashtag, you can try to rank for reels and posts. Reels are short engaging video content and are easy to reach people.
How To Find The Best Hashtags To Use?
Hashtags can help you get your posts more followers and engagement if you use them the right way. To find the right hashtags to use, you can follow these steps.
- Start following influencers in your niche and monitor your competitors. This can give you new ideas and improve your marketing strategies.
- To create successful hashtags, you need to know what is trending. Stay active on social media platforms so that you are up to date with the latest trends.
- For finding hashtags, use hashtag finding tools like bundlepost, hashtracking, and tweetchat. These tools can give you the popularity of each hashtag and trend. Now, use these insights to get more engaging hashtags.
- You can use the hashtags you already have to find new hashtags that are related to it. Search for hashtags on social media platforms and find posts that use hashtags for tagging. Also, look for other hashtags used in these posts. If you are using a hashtag called #onlinemarketing, you can get related hashtags like #onlinemarketingstrategies, #onlinemarketingtips, #onlinemarketer, etc.
- Finally, use Social listening tools to find which hashtags to use for each social media platform that you are on.
The Bottom Line
To sum up, hashtags alone cannot boost engagement on your account. But, you can creatively use hashtags along with quality content to create more user engagement, promote various campaigns, and build your brand. To create and use hashtags effectively, you need to be up to date with the latest trends and research thoroughly. Also, if you are not sure, you can get the help of a social media marketing expert to use the right marketing strategies for your business.